Tag Archives: paul

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.

Rand Paul Hasn’t Endorsed Lamar Alexander

Aides to Sen. Rand Paul said the Kentucky Republican’s participation in Sen. Lamar Alexander’s campaign ad should not be construed as an endorsement for a third term in the Senate, reports Chris Carroll.
Paul, a tea party favorite who praises Alexander in the Volunteer State Republican’s statewide ads, said through a spokesman his remarks should be viewed in a very narrow context.
“The footage that Sen. Alexander’s campaign is using is from a public press conference in regards to a bill they both cosponsored,” spokesman Sergio Gor said. “At this time Senator Paul has not made an endorsement in this race.”
Viewed in a broader light, Paul’s actions belie his statement in the ad that “Nobody wants to say no to Lamar Alexander.
In fact, Paul opposed Alexander on three recent, high-profile votes: the “fiscal cliff” measure, an Internet sales tax bill and immigration reform.
Alexander voted for all three, angering some tea party activists.
Gor and Paul chief of staff Doug Stafford said the former Bowling Green ophthalmologist has not decided whether he’ll endorse Alexander or anyone in Tennessee’s 2014 Senate race.
To date, Alexander has not drawn a GOP primary challenger. But conservative opposition groups, including one called “Beat Lamar,” have sprung up across Tennessee. Lately, they’ve cited Alexander’s immigration vote as a reason to bring him home from Washington.
Initial reports about the ad, which deals with a bill fighting fishing restrictions, highlighted Paul’s presence and its effect on Alexander’s political future. An article in The Hill newspaper cites an unnamed Alexander campaign aide saying, “Paul’s inclusion in the video is designed to boost Alexander’s credibility among the grassroots Tea Party activists.”
But in a Friday phone interview, Alexander himself cautioned against “making more or less of the ad than there is.”
“I know how to run an endorsement ad, and this was not an endorsement ad,” Alexander said. “I’ve run into several people who saw the ad, liked it and understood it was about fishing.”

Alexander TV Ad: Fishing saved and Rand Paul Can’t Say No to Lamar!

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Lamar Alexander’s first ads of his re-election campaign feature fellow Republican U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, a tea party favorite from neighboring Kentucky.
The Alexander campaign announced Friday it has bought $180,000 worth of ads to run over two weeks on broadcast and cable television and on the radio.
The ads highlight Alexander’s successful effort to place a moratorium on an Army Corps of Engineers plan to erect barriers to prevent people from fishing below dams on the Cumberland River. (It was, says Alexander in the radio version, “one of the most extreme cases of government overreach in history.”)
The spot includes video of Paul saying: “Nobody wants to say no to Lamar Alexander.”
Alexander’s campaign had $1.8 million on hand through the first quarter of the year. While some tea party groups have grumbled about a third term for Alexander, no Republican challenger has emerged so far.

Note 1: Politico says Alexander collected $2 million in second quarter fundraising and has some details on the ad, HERE.
Note 2: The Alexander campaign news release, with links to the radio and TV versions of the ad, is below.

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Book shedding new light on TN history

From “History Bill” Carey:
Paul Clements spent 11 years researching first-person accounts of the early settlements of Middle Tennessee. He assembled every available account of events such as the journey of the Donelson Party, the Battle of the Bluffs, the Nickajack Expedition and countless other events between 1775 and 1800. He recently published many of these in the book “Chronicles of the Cumberland Settlements.” This amazing 800-page volume sheds new light on the early history of Nashville and proves that many of the stories we have heard only tell part of the story.
Carey’s Q and A session with Clements is HERE.
And Carey has a piece in the City Paper. An excerpt from that:
A native of Nashville who doesn’t even have a degree in history, Clements just moved the understanding of Nashville’s early history forward one very large step. He did this the old-fashioned way — by staring at microfilm for more than a decade in places such as the Metro Nashville Archives and the Tennessee State Library and Archives.
“I’m in awe of what Paul has done,” said John Egerton, Southern historian and the author of Speak Now Against the Day: The Generation Before the Civil Rights Movement in the South. “The very idea that such a thing could happen at this stage is astonishing.
“The only way it could have happened is because of a guy like Paul.”
You see, in the 1840s, a man named Lyman Draper interviewed many of the people who were here when present-day Davidson and Sumner counties consisted of nothing more than a series of forts and homesteads. Draper conducted these interviews intending to write a long book about the history of the American frontier.
Draper never wrote the book, but he wrote transcripts of the interviews. In some cases, the notebooks containing these interviews had never been translated from his mid-19thcentury handwriting — until Clements did it.
Furthermore, about 75 pages of handwritten notes written by someone who interviewed Edward Swanson in the 1820s were discovered in a West Tennessee home in the 1980s. This was a remarkable discovery. Swanson, you see, was one of Middle Tennessee’s earliest settlers; he came to the “French Lick,” as Nashville was once known, before the Donelson Party got here. Swanson’s notebooks were detailed, containing accounts of events such as the Battle of the Bluffs, and descriptions of the fort that used to be in present-day downtown Nashville.

Rand Paul to Help With State Senator’s Fundraising

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (AP) — A potential Republican presidential candidate is headlining Tennessee state Sen. Jack Johnson’s annual summer barbeque in Franklin.
U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, of Bowling Green, Ky., is scheduled to attend the fundraiser at the Factory in Franklin on July 28. Several hundred people have attended the event in years past. Tickets are $50.
Johnson is the chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee and a prominent fundraiser in the Tennessee General Assembly.
Tennessee Republicans have not voted for the eventual presidential nominee in the primary since giving the nod to President George W. Bush in 2004.
In 2008, the Tennessee GOP primary was won by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee over U.S. Sen. John McCain, and in 2012 Republicans voted for former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum over former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Ron Paul and Jimmy Duncan: Ideological Twins?

The blogosphere has been abuzz with speculation about who might continue to carry the torch for U.S. Rep. Ron Paul now that the straight-talking Texan and campaigner for low taxes and limited government is retiring from Congress.
For some, the answer seems obvious, reports Michael Collins: The next Ron Paul just might be U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr., a straight-talking Tennessean whose political philosophy and voting record are closely in sync with Paul’s on many issues.
“He’s probably the closest to Ron Paul’s ideological twin on Capitol Hill,” said Mark Anderson, a Ron Paul fan from Atlanta.
Duncan, a Knoxville Republican, said while he and the retiring congressman share many of the same beliefs, “I don’t think anyone can replace Ron Paul or become another Ron Paul, and that certainly is not my goal.”
At the same time, “it is probably accurate to say that during the 16 years Congressman Paul and I have served together, no two members have voted more alike than we have,” Duncan said during a recent floor speech in which he lauded Paul’s service in Congress.

Former AG Summers Named Senior Judge

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Former state Attorney General Paul Summers has been appointed to a four-year term as a senior judge beginning on Jan. 1.
Summers is currently a partner at the Waller law firm in Nashville.
According to a news release from the firm, prior to his nearly eight years as attorney general, Summers spent eight years on the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals. Before that, he was district attorney general for the 25th Judicial District in West Tennessee.
Summers has 33 years of commissioned military service as a judge advocate general officer, retiring with the rank of colonel in the U.S. Army. Summers received the National Guard Distinguished Service Medal from Gov. Phil Bredesen and the Legion of Merit from President George W. Bush.

Ryan’s Memphis Fundraiser: Praise for Ribs, Haslam’s ‘Common Sense’

After genuflecting at the altar of barbecue with a reference to Rendezous’ ribs, Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan reminded his supporters that President Barack Obama’s time in office needs to end, reports the Commercial Appeal.
“This is the most important election in your generation,” the Wisconsin congressman said at The Racquet Club on Thursday afternoon.
“We are picking a path that will set in motion either a reclamation of the American dream,” he said, or one that will result in a “welfare state with a debt crisis” like Europe.
The fundraiser included a $10,000 photo opportunity, a $1,000-per-person reception attended by 220 people and then a $25,000-per-plate dinner at the home of FedEx CEO and founder Fred Smith.
Earlier in the day, the Wisconsin congressman raised $1 million at a similar fundraiser in Knoxville. (Note: News Sentinel story HERE; and the Memphis Daily News says $1 million was raised at Memphis, too.)
…He stressed the need to bring manufacturing opportunities back to America, touting the dangers of “spending money we don’t have.”
“We know what we need to do,” Ryan said. “We know how to pull it together. … This country knows we don’t want four more years of the same. They want to get back to growth and opportunity and we’re going to do that.”
Ryan praised Tennessee’s political leaders — including Gov. Bill Haslam, who hosted the fundraiser — saying that he wished “we had more of this Tennessee common sense.”
A who’s who of state GOP heavyweights turned out to support Ryan, including U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, state Sen. Mark Norris and U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher.

Ryan Collects $1 Million at Knoxville Fundraiser

The Mitt Romney- Paul Ryan team wants to win a GOP victory “by acclamation” in the Nov. 6 election, vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan said today at a fundraiser at the Knoxville Marriott, reports the News Sentinel.
Ryan told a crowd of 310 people that since President Obama can’t run on hope and change, he’s going to do it by dividing the nation and winning by default.
At the event, Gov. Bill Haslam announced that about $1 million was raised at the fundraiser. This included persons who donated at either the $1,000 or $10,000 level.
Those donating $10,000 were able to have their photographs with Ryan.
Ryan’s theme throughout the 15-minute speech was that voters have a choice between personal liberties and smaller government offered by the Romney-Ryan team — or bigger government and fewer liberties offered by the Democrats.
He said the Romney-Ryan ticket stresses the American system of freedom and free enterprise, while President Obama practices a different government and sees its role as establishing new government-defined rights.
Earlier today, with a wave to reporters and a nod toward a banner touting the University of Tennessee, Ryan had stepped off his campaign plane at McGhee Tyson Airport and headed for the fundraiser at the Marriott.

Some Boycott Democratic Fundraiser Over Joke

Some Democrats are boycotting the Hamilton County Democratic Party’s upcoming annual fundraiser in response to Chairman Paul Smith’s continued refusal to apologize for a sexist joke, reports the Chattanooga Times-Free Press.
It’s the latest setback for Smith, who’s facing louder calls to step down after an attempt at humor on a Democratic Party business document was perceived by numerous women as misogyny.
An email about Smith obtained by the Chattanooga Times Free Press began circulating among party officials and board members Wednesday. It explored the possibility of an emergency meeting about a no-confidence vote that could prompt his resignation.
Reached by phone Wednesday, Smith declined to discuss his future as chairman or the Oct. 10 Estes Kefauver Dinner, named after the esteemed Chattanooga lawmaker and considered the local party’s main mechanism for pre-Election Day money.
“I don’t want to get in an argument with that bunch,” he said, describing those he offended and others who are boycotting the dinner. “I’m trying to register people and work for the candidates.”
Smith, 75, included a lengthy joke about women on a board meeting agenda four days after U.S. Rep. Todd Akin’s comments about “legitimate rape.” He said he printed it as an attack on Akin, but his explanation baffled and offended high-ranking women in the county party. Smith last week called them “troublemakers” who don’t understand his jokes.
Board member and Hamilton County Young Democrats President Colby Knecht, 20, said his group is withdrawing a $1,500 commitment to the dinner.