Tag Archives: U.S. Senate

Knoxville lawyer announces run for U.S. Senate as Democrat

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Democrat Terry Adams has announced he will run for the U.S. Senate next year.

Adams is a Navy veteran and a Knoxville attorney. He said in a release Monday that his campaign will seek to capitalize on infighting within the Republican Party, where state Rep. Joe Carr is challenging incumbent U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander for the nomination.

Adams noted that Democrats have prevailed in other states where tea party candidates bested establishment Republicans in the primary.

Adams’ campaign treasurer is Nashville attorney Bob Tuke, a former state Democratic Party chairman who unsuccessfully ran against Alexander in 2008.

Others who have already announced for the race include Democrat Larry Crim and Republican Brenda Lenard.

Note: Previous post HERE. The announcement news release is below
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Corker criticizes Cruz ‘show’ on Senate floor

From Politico:
The GOP’s anger at Sen. Ted Cruz — expressed mostly in private meetings this week — burst onto the usually collegial Senate floor on Thursday, with Sen. Bob Corker excoriating his Texas Republican colleague for blocking a quick vote to avert a government shutdown next week.

In a highly unusual Republican v. Republican exchange, Corker accused Cruz of delaying a Thursday vote simply to create a “show” to cater to his conservative activist supporters at the expense of making good policy.

“You want the American people and the outside groups that you’ve been in contact with to be able to watch us tomorrow,” a perplexed Corker charged on the floor. “The reason we’re waiting is that y’all have sent out releases and emails and you want everybody to be able to watch. And it just doesn’t seem to me that that’s in our nation’s interest.”

And Corker ridiculed Cruz’s 21-hour floor speech earlier this week, saying never before in the “the history of the country” has a senator delivered such a marathon speech before casting a vote in favor of debating the measure he or she has sought to block.
Cruz shot back.

“Why is Majority Leader Harry Reid going to vote the same way you’re proposing to vote? Why is every Democrat in this chamber going to vote the way you’re proposing to vote,” said Cruz. “When we told our constituents we oppose Obamacare, we meant it. So we are not going to be complicit in giving Harry Reid the ability to fund Obamacare.”

The bitter exchange on the Senate floor between two fellow Republicans is just the latest iteration of the ongoing fight Cruz is waging with his party over whether to use the threat of a government shutdown as leverage to defund Obamacare. While they oppose the president’s health care law, most Senate Republicans refuse to back the Cruz tactic, arguing it would prompt a politically damaging government shutdown and will fail to convince Democrats to gut the president’s signature legislative achievement.

Note: The C-SPAN video is HERE.

Sunday Column: On Semi-credible Carr vs. Running-scared Alexander

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander has been wisely running scared since announcing a year ago that he would seek a third term, aware that the recipe for unseating old-school Republicans is now public knowledge and most of the ingredients may be available right here in Tennessee.

The first line of defense in the apparent Lamartian strategy was to keep any potential challenger with a modicum of credibility out of the race. He boldly cast this building of war chest, assembling of allies and other tactics in military terms of “shock and awe” in one Washington interview — tea party critics call it “intimidation” — while simultaneously engaging in diplomacy. He met with prospective opponents that he heard about and talked them out of running — whether by shock and awe, by generous surrender terms or both, one can only speculate.

That first line of defense was bypassed last week as state Rep. Joe Carr, R-Lascassas, declared himself a candidate. He has a modicum or two of credibility, though not enough to cause too much alarm in the Alexander army. There are other lines of defense before getting to the “shock and awe” counterattack stage.

The most immediate impact on Tennessee’s political landscape of Carr’s announcement, by conventional wisdom, was the elevation of state Sen. Jim Tracy from “probable” winner of the 4th District Congressional seat to “virtually certain” winner. Carr pulled out of the 4th District race to run for the Senate, leaving Tracy in an apparent head-to-head matchup with embattled U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais. Tracy’s legislative colleagues were already calling him “congressman” last week.
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Mark Clayton: $10 Million Plan, $500 Collected

So, who is Mark Clayton, the man who will represent Democrats in November?
The question is posed by Chas Sisk, who then gives the short answer:
A study in political contradictions — and an example of the limitations of party labels.
An excerpt from the elaboration:
Clayton, 35, has worked against gay marriage and for Tennessee’s controversial “Don’t Say Gay” legislation, but he opposes a Republican-backed law requiring new welfare applicants to be drug-tested. He’s pro-life, but he thinks the Republican Party has nothing to offer working-class people. He’s pro-military — and was briefly a part of it — but he says it has “gone overboard.”
Some of Clayton’s policy positions are off the beaten path of either major party: his talk of a “new world order”; fears of America sliding into an “Orwellian super state”; concerns about “FEMA prison camps”; and a belief that the United States, Canada and Mexico want to form a “North American Union.” But he can come across as more reasonable in person, speaking earnestly about what average citizens want and need from government.
…Clayton was born in Mobile, Ala., and spent most of his early years in Alexandria, Va. He has described his parents as “Goldwater Republicans.” His father lobbied Congress on religious liberty issues.
After graduating from high school, Clayton joined the U.S. Army Reserve, where he started learning to be an aircraft electrician. He later changed course “on intuition” and decided to enroll at Pensacola Christian College, where he graduated with a pre-law degree in 2002.
A year later, tired of the high cost of living in northern Virginia, he moved to Nashville. He intended to go back to Army officer training, but then his father and a beloved mentor, author William Gill, both died.
“My greatest political defeat was wrought by death,” he said Thursday between sips of iced tea at Demos’ Restaurant downtown.
So in 2004 he bought a 1920s-era farmhouse on 3 acres of land in Whites Creek, where he still lives with his dog, Saint. He has never married.
Clayton isn’t a lawyer, businessman, governor or actor. He has worked at Target and a call center. He has sold life insurance, siding and roofs. He has been a church youth group leader and a floor installer and now works for a moving company.
…Clayton said he passed out nearly 5,000 fliers and knocked on “an uncountable number of doors” during his first campaign four years ago, which did “a lot of the heavy lifting” for his current Senate bid.
He has not filed any fundraising reports with the Federal Election Commission.
He said he raised $100 for the primary and spent $65 of it on a news release.
Now, he said, he plans to raise $10 million for the general election. But his $500 haul in the first week won’t threaten Massachusetts candidate Elizabeth Warren as the biggest fundraiser among first-time Senate nominees.

Loser Asks Democrats to Hold New U.S. Senate Primary

A losing candidate for Tennessee’s Democratic U.S. Senate nomination launched an effort Monday to have the election of the winner, Mark Clayton, thrown out because he is a member of a “hate group.”
Larry Crim, who finished fourth in Thursday’s seven-candidate field, met with State Election Coordinator Mark Goins Monday, then delivered letters to the state Democratic Party headquarters asking that Clayton be rejected and that a new primary election be conducted no later than Oct. 9.
Tennessee Democratic Party spokesman Sean Braisted said attorneys were reviewing the letter and wanted to research legal issues involved. The letter from Crim’s lawyer s a demands a reply by 3 p.m. Tuesday. (Note: Letter from Crim HERE; letter from Crim’s lawyer HERE.)
The party issued a statement Friday disavowing Clayton’s candidacy, saying he is “associated with a known hate group in Washington, D.C.” Clayton is vice president of Public Advocate of the United States, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has classified as “a hate group” – a depiction disputed by Clayton and by the group.
State Democratic Chairman Chip Forrester said Friday that the party is simply asking voters to write-in a candidate of their choice in November’s election rather than vote for Clayton.
“That’s not a remedy at all – not for the candidates, not for the voters and not for the party,” said Crim.

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Candidate Crim Wants Redo of Democrats’ U.S. Senate Primary

(Note: If Clayton were off the ballot, Larry Crim would be at the top in alphabetical order. His proposal here amounts to calling a statewide special election — with, I think, the state party required to cover the cost — and likely won’t get much further than the news release phase. Here is the news release.)
News release from Larry Crim campaign:
Larry Crim, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Tennessee’s August 2nd Primary, learned on Friday August 3rd that an unknown hate group leader Mark Clayton, who sneaked in as a democratic candidate on the ballot ahead of Crim, had hoodwinked the democratic party and voters taking the votes from top of the ballot positioning away from Crim and other bona fide Tennessee Democrats.
The democratic party’s discovery of the CLAYTON hate group association and his lack of democratic credentials was not until Clayton perpetrated a fraud on the party and voters by garnering top of ballot positioning and most votes on Thursday August 2, 2012.
The Tennessee Democratic Party has now said Clayton won exclusively because of being at the top of the ballot and has disavowed any association with Clayton because he is not a democrat and is an officer of a known
hate group.
Based on that premise, the Larry Crim U.S. Senate campaign maintains Mr. Crim, who conducted a grass roots campaign mostly in Memphis and Nashville where he won more than any other candidate except Clayton, would have been the Democratic Elected Nominee on August 2nd since Crim would have also garnered the votes by topping the ballot but for Clayton’s fraudulent acts which caused Clayton’s name to be listed ahead of Crim.
Mr. Crim said: “The Tennessee Democratic Party has rightfully disavowed any and all association with Mr. Clayton, who is an officer and pawn of this extremist group seeking to infiltrate and dominate the democratic political
processes through such skullduggery in which Clayton and his group have engaged.”
Although all “bona fide democratic candidates were affected by Clayton’s actions”, said Crim, “our candidacy was especially impacted because the name of ‘Crim’ would have topped the ballot and reasonably garnered the nomination had this Clayton fraud not been on the ballot”.

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U.S. Senate Candidate Indicted for Soliciting 7-year-old Girl

A Johnson City man who is running for the Democratic nomination to the U.S. Senate seat now held by Republican Bob Corker is also facing a felony charge in one of those counties, according to the Johnson City Press.
Thomas Kenneth Owens, 36, was indicted by a Carter County grand jury on May 14 on a charge of solicitation of a minor. Owens was arraigned in Criminal Court on May 31.
When asked about his employment and financial status, Owens informed the court that he was a candidate for the U.S. Senate. He then filed an affidavit of indigency and Judge Robert Cupp appointed a public defender for Owens.
Cupp also ordered a mental evaluation. When he was contacted Monday afternoon about the criminal charge against him and what impact it would have on his candidacy, Owens said “Those charges are false charges and there should not be any publication.”
The telephone call was then disconnected. The charge stems from an investigation by the Carter County Sheriff’s Department into allegations that a 7-year-old girl was riding her bicycle in front of the apartment where Owens lived on May 21, 2011.
The girl told her mother and later Lt. Randy Bowers that Owens came out of his apartment and asked the girl if she wanted a “twisty tie” ring that he had made. When she entered Owens’ apartment, she said he gave her the ring and asked her for a hug. After she hugged him, he allegedly unzipped his pants and exposed himself, asking her to perform an inappropriate act.
The girl told Owens she had to go home and finish her chores. She then ran home
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Two U.S. Senate Candidates Past Problems Aired

U.S. Senate candidate Brenda Lenard said Wednesday that she has been urged to leave the race and endorse another of incumbent Sen. Bob Corker’s opponents in the Republican primary because of a bad check conviction and bankruptcies in her background.
Lenard, a Tea Party activist and single mother working on a doctorate in political science at the University of Tennessee, said she will “absolutely not” do so and believes that her life experiences – including the 1990s financial problems – make her a better person and a better candidate.
“There is not one thing in my past or even now that I’m ashamed of,” said Lenard, 45, of Sweetwater. “Life is tough and sometimes you have to roll with the punches.”

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Overall on Senate Race: ‘If Nobody Else Will Do It, I Will Do It’

Greeneville-based actress and nuclear power critic Park Overall has thrown her hat into the ring for the U.S. Senate race in Tennessee.
Overall, 55, formally filed papers to run on the Democratic ticket for the office Wednesday in Nashville at the state Board of Elections.
“I have officially filed to run against [Republican incumbent] Bob Corker for the U.S. Senate,” Overall told The Greeneville Sun this morning. “Somebody had to do it and if nobody else will do it, I will do it.”
….Overall told the Sun she is looking for a campaign manager as she gears up for a serious run at the office.
“I’m a good Democrat and there doesn’t seem to be one around. I’m going for broke,” she said.
Overall said she will focus on women’s issues and the environment in her campaign.
Overall is an outspoken critic of nuclear power, and has frequently spoken at hearings and public meetings associated with the operation of the Nuclear Fuel Services plant in Unicoi County.
Overall said she received a favorable response about her candidacy Saturday from a crowd of 700 at the Jackson Day event in Nashville.
She characterized herself as an “all-inclusive” candidate who will “tell it like it is.”
“It’s the hatred and the rhetoric. Why can’t anybody tell the truth? I’m going to tell the truth,” Overall said.
An official announcement will be made this week, Overall said.
“I will start low, build slow, strike fire and leave the stage,” she said.

Beverly Marrero for the (U.S.) Senate?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Democratic state Sen. Beverly Marrero says she’s “stunned” by an online effort to draft her to run for the U.S. Senate this year.
Marrero has been a vocal critic of the legislative redistricting plan that places her in the same Memphis district as fellow Democratic Sen. Jim Kyle.
She said Wednesday that the calls for her to instead run against Republican U.S. Sen. Bob Corker this year are a “very lovely gesture” and said she’s not ready to rule anything out.
Marrero was elected to the state Senate in 2007 after serving six years in the House. She is 72.
The candidate filing deadline is April 5.

Note: See also Trace Sharp backing the draft Marrero idea HERE; and the facebook page on the draft Marrero movement HERE.