Tag Archives: endorsement

Rand Paul ‘very supportive’ of Lamar Alexander (but that’s not an endorsement)

By Erik Schelzig, Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Kentucky’s Rand Paul said Monday that he’s “very supportive” of fellow U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander but stopped short of endorsing the Tennessee Republican, who is up for re-election next year.

Alexander’s campaign has been working to fend off potential primary challengers from the right. Tea party activists unhappy with Alexander staged a counter-rally last week when the senator held a campaign event in Smyrna. But a GOP opponent has yet to emerge.

Alexander’s first TV ad of the campaign features Paul, a tea party favorite, in the two senators’ role in halting an Army Corps of Engineers plan to erect barriers to prevent people from fishing below dams on the Cumberland River. The spot includes video of Paul saying: “Nobody wants to say no to Lamar Alexander.”

Paul told reporters before a forum at a Nashville charter school on Monday that he didn’t want to be drawn into what he called a media-driven “parlor game” about endorsements.

“I’m very supportive of Sen. Alexander, and I hope he doesn’t get an opponent, I hope he wins re-election,” Paul said. “I’m very supportive of him, but I really just don’t want to get trapped into all these political games.”

But Paul, who is considering a presidential bid in 2016, hasn’t completely exempted himself from political endorsements in Tennessee. He was in in suburban Nashville on Sunday night to speak at a fundraiser for state Sen. Jack Johnson, R-Franklin.

Alexander said he was comfortable with Paul’s position, noting that he has not been endorsed by any other U.S. senator other than Bob Corker, a fellow Tennessee Republican.

“We’re not here to endorse each other,” Alexander said. “What I try to do is earn the respect of my colleagues. And Rand Paul has certainly earned my respect for the way he speaks out and works on education, and I hope I can earn his.

“So we’re not here about endorsements; we’re here about how can we help teachers, and parents and children, and I appreciate very much what he has to say,” he said.

Alexander said his campaign ad featuring Paul was not meant to give the impression that he had won his endorsement.

“My TV ad I hope gives the impression that we’re pretty effective when it comes to defending the rights of fishermen,” Alexander said.

Tennessean Breaks Tradition, Backs Republican for President

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville has broken with a decades-long tradition of backing Democratic candidates for president and given its endorsement to Republican Mitt Romney.
An editorial (http://tnne.ws/PcEWUV) published Thursday expressed disappointment with the campaign tone set by Romney and President Barack Obama and the lack of clarity on what either would do if elected.
It faulted Romney for straying from the positions he held as governor of Massachusetts and Obama for pursuing health care reform instead of the economy.
The editorial urged Romney, “Be the man who governed Massachusetts, and you’ll reunite America.”
Of Obama, the paper said, “it’s clear whatever shaky bridges were burned in the push for health reform only emboldened Republicans to oppose his subsequent economic proposals. That has rendered much of his presidency ineffective.”
The newspaper’s editorial page leans left and has endorsed Democratic candidates for president since 1972, when it backed George McGovern.
The paper endorsed Obama in 2008, and the Democrat won in Nashville. But John McCain won Tennessee by a landslide with 57 percent of the vote.

Note: The News Sentinel earlier broke tradition by deciding not to make an endorsement in the presidential race. Editor Jack McElroy discusses the reaction in a blog post.

News Sentinel Ends Endorsements in Presidential Race

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Knoxville News Sentinel has ended a decades-old tradition of endorsing presidential candidates, saying it no longer has any special access to the candidates.
Editor Jack McElroy said in a column (http://bit.ly/WpA2Ec) published Sunday it was a difficult decision.
“Citizens can find plenty of opinions about the presidential candidates to weigh against their own, and there is no shortage of community dialogue — far from it,” McElroy wrote. “The News Sentinel also has no special access to the candidates, and, in this age of global Internet and 24-hour news, we have no sources of information that every other citizen does not have as well.”
The tradition of endorsing a presidential candidate dates to the paper’s beginnings in the 1920s.
Until 2008, the newspaper’s presidential endorsement was decided by its parent company, E.W. Scripps Co. Most went to Republicans, including in 2000 when the paper backed George W. Bush over Tennessean Al Gore. In 2008, the newpaper’s editorial board endorsed John McCain.
McElroy said the editorial board sees strong reasons for endorsing candidates in local races, including sparking community dialogue and using a newspaper’s special access to candidates to help inform voters. That rationale no longer applies to the presidential contest, he said.
The paper will continue to endorse candidates in local races

Romney Campaign Removes Praise of DesJarlais from Campaign Website

Mitt Romney hailed Scott DesJarlais as an “independent and principled conservative” in a May endorsement of the 4th District congressman’s re-election, but his campaign has now quietly removed a news release on the endorsement from a campaign website.
The Huffington Post says the news release was taken down Thursday after the Internet news service asked about it, in light of revelations that DesJarlais had encouraged his pregnant mistress to get an abortion when he believed her pregnant.
From the HuffPo:
Romney’s campaign so far has declined to comment.
But the GOP presidential nominee himself was effusive in the original posting.
“I’m very proud to have the support of such a principled and independent conservative as Scott DesJarlais,” said Romney. “In his time in Congress, Scott has been a real leader for balancing the budget, lowering taxes and scaling back the size of government. I look forward to working with Scott to spread that kind of conservative message across the Volunteer State as we work to restore America’s promise.”
That message may be missing from Team Romney’s site, but Romney’s kind words can still be found on DesJarlais’ news feed.
DesJarlais’ Facebook page also features a photo of the congressman and his family posing with the presidential contender.

Endorsements in Senate District 6 Race

News-Sentinel Backs Roddy
When Jamie Woodson announced she would resign her 6th District state Senate seat last spring to run an education nonprofit, three fellow Republican women leapt at the chance to succeed her in a special election.
Our choice in the Republican primary to replace Woodson is City Councilwoman Marilyn Roddy.
Roddy would bring to the seat an impressive command of the issues facing state government, experience working with Gov. Bill Haslam when he was mayor and a strong emphasis on education shared with Woodson.
….Roddy faces a tough road to the general election. Her strongest opponent is Becky Duncan Massey, who has done stellar work in the community as executive director of the Sertoma Center. Though politically inexperienced herself, she grew up the daughter of a congressman and is the sister of U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr. Victoria DeFreese, a former Knox County commissioner, has enough name recognition and enthusiasm for campaigning to siphon off enough votes to make a difference in the outcome.
All three primary candidates paint themselves as conservative, but Roddy’s record on City Council and her statements in interviews and in candidate forums indicate she will be more pragmatic than ideological, making her an ideal legislative ally for Haslam.
(Full editorial HERE.)
State Employees for Massey
News release from TSEA’s PAC:
NASHVILLE – Monday, September 12, 2011 -The Tennessee Employees Action Movement (TEAM) – the PAC of the Tennessee State Employees Association – proudly endorses Becky Duncan Massey (R – Knoxville) in her bid for election to the District 6 seat of the Tennessee State Senate
“We are pleased to endorse Becky Duncan Massey’s campaign,” said James Braswell, Chair of the TEAM Administrative Committee. “Becky Massey appreciates state employees and values the services they provide daily to the citizens of Tennessee. She understands that quality services depend on a motivated, effective and efficient workforce and we believe she will be a strong supporter of state employees.” said Braswell.
TEAM, is the political action arm of the Tennessee State Employees Association, which represents hundreds of state employees in the 6th Senate District. TSEA was established in 1974. For further information, visit the Web site at www.tseaonline.org.