Marsha Blackburn

Ogles says Trump should fix ‘legislative opioid debacle’

News release from Andy Ogles campaign

Republican conservative U.S. Senate candidate Andy Ogles is calling on President Donald Trump to issue an Executive Order directing DEA and other federal agencies to use all available means to intensify the investigation and prosecution of those engaged in the reckless, illegal and dangerous overprescription and distribution of opioids.

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Pro-Trump super PAC and Club for Growth backing Blackburn

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn of has been endorsed by two more big conservative political organizations in her run for the U.S. Senate, reports the Nashville Post.

The pro-Trump super PAC Great America Alliance endorsed Blackburn, saying, “The best way to advance the ‘America First’ movement is to hold elected leaders accountable — get on board and get the job done or be replaced by someone who will.”

And the anti-tax, free market 501(c)(4) Club for Growth has also endorsed Blackburn, along with state Sen. Mark Green (R-Ashland City), who officially filed with the FEC on Friday to raise money for a run for Blackburn’s current 7th District Congressional seat.

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Blackburn bashed over bill undercutting DEA authority over opioid distribution

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, now running for the U.S. Senate, is cited in a 60 Minutes report as a leading proponent of legislation approved by Congress – after heavy lobbying by the drug manufacturing industry — that apparently undercut the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency’s authority to oversee distribution of products involved in the national opioid abuse crisis.

The report has brought a round of criticism aimed at Blackburn from Democrats and former U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher, who is exploring a run against Blackburn for the Republican nomination to U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Bob Corker.

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Fincher already contrasting himself with Blackburn

Stephen Fincher hasn’t yet declared his candidacy for the U.S. Senate, but the Associated Press reports he is drawing a stark contrast between himself and Rep. Marsha Blackburn, who launched her campaign for the Republican nomination within an hour of Gov. Bill Haslam’s announcement that he isn’t running.

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Blackburn turns Twitter rebuff into fundraising effort

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn has been barred from advertising her campaign for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination on Twitter because a line about her efforts to investigate Planned Parenthood was deemed “inflammatory,” reports Politico. Blackburn is using the Twitter rebuff as a theme in her fundraising efforts.

Blackburn, who is running to replace retiring Sen. Bob Corker, launched her campaign last week with a video proclaiming herself “a hard core, card-carrying Tennessee conservative.” In her announcement video, she boasts: “I fought Planned Parenthood and we stopped the sale of baby body parts. Thank God.”

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Statewide Fincher listening tour precedes decision on U.S. Senate run

News release from Stephen Fincher

FROG JUMP, Tenn. – Listening to voters before launching a possible bid for the U.S. Senate seat held by retiring Senator Bob Corker, Stephen Fincher will travel the state from Mountain City to Memphis to hear what voters want in their next U.S. Senator.

Fincher will begin the tour in Mountain City on Monday and travel to multiple counties a day meeting with small groups of Tennesseans. The tour will work westward and conclude in Memphis in the coming weeks.

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Marsha Blackburn announces as Senate candidate via video

Beginning of an AP story:

NASHVILLE (AP) — U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn announced her campaign for U.S. Sen. Bob Corker’s seat on Thursday in a video that slams the “totally dysfunctional” Senate and Republicans in particular for their failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

Blackburn also touts her support for gun rights, opposition to abortion rights and calls for more limits on government spending in the video.

“I know the left calls me a wingnut or a knuckle-dragging conservative,” she said. “And you know what? I say that’s all right. Bring it on.”

Democrat raises $100K for run against Blackburn (or?)

Reality television star Justin Kanew says he has raised more than $100,000 as a Democratic candidate for the 7th Congressional District seat currently held by Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn, reports the Nashville Post.

“As Marsha decides which office best suits her, we’ll be over here running hard for the opportunity to truly represent the people of the 7th district,” Kanew said in a press release. “We’ll likely never match the millions Marsha has sitting in her war chest, but over the course of the next year we look forward to continuing to raise enough money to get our message out through grassroots efforts, adding more volunteers and voters to our team who are excited about bringing something new to TN7. This is a campaign by the people and for the people, and that won’t change no matter who the GOP nominates.”

…The son of a Hollywood director, Kanew has been endorsed by celebrities like Adam Brody, Mindy Kaling and Martina Navratilova, but he said that 84 percent of his donations were under $200. 

As of June 30, Blackburn has $3.12 million on hand in federal campaign funds — all of which she could use for a Senate run, which she is strongly considering. 

Harsh Haslam-bashing foreseen if governor runs for Senate

The Associated Press and The Tennessean have collected comments and offered some observations on the developing Republican U.S. Senate primary in separate articles appearing this weekend.

In the Tennessean piece, the lead observation is that Gov. Bill Haslam, if he enters the race, is going to face a lot of opposition from the party’s right wing because of past criticisms of President Donald Trump and a public refusal to vote for him. The AP article includes criticism of the governor from Democrats as well.

Both quote from the conservative Club for Growth’s critique of Haslam on Friday.

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Update on Corker successor candidate speculation

Gov. Bill Haslam, through a spokeswoman, declined to comment on the possibility of trying to succeed Sen. Bob Corker Tuesday. He’s certain to be asked about it at his next scheduled media availability on Thursday.

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn is definitely interested, reports The Tennessean, and will make a decision soon.

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ABOUT THIS BLOG

Former Knoxville News Sentinel capitol bureau chief Tom Humphrey writes about Tennessee politics, government, and legislative news.

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