Republicans

John Rose announces run for 6th Congressional District seat

News release from John Rose campaign

John Rose of Temperance Hall announced Thursday he will be seeking the Republican nomination for Tennessee’s 6th Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives. Rose is a small business owner and farmer who was raised in Cookeville and has spent his life in the 6th district. In fact, he is the eighth generation in his family to own and operate the family farm in DeKalb and Smith Counties.

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Ken Gross is fourth Republican to launch campaign for 2nd Congressional District

Ken Gross, a politically-active Knoxville business executive, has become the fourth Republican to declare himself a candidate to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. John J. “Jimmy” Duncan Jr. in the 2nd Congressional District.

His campaign slogan, Gross tells the News Sentinel: Make Congress great again.

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Nashville crowd of 2,000 hears Pence praise Trump & TN Republicans, voice sympathy for Nashville mayor

A crowd estimated at 2,000 at the Tennessee Republican Party’s annual fundraising dinner Thursday evening heard Vice President Mike Pence hail the Trump administration’s accomplishments, praise the field of GOP gubernatorial candidates, declare U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker “extraordinary” and express sympathy with Nashville’s mayor over the death of her son.

State Republican Chairman Scott Golden says both the crowd and the money collected — about $850,000 — were records for TNGOP.

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Devaney named Lee’s campaign manager

News release from Bill Lee campaign

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – Bill Lee, a Republican gubernatorial candidate and conservative Williamson County business owner, announced several key staff additions to his growing campaign team.

Former Tennessee Republican Party Chairman Chris Devaney has joined the campaign as Campaign Manager and Senior Advisor andTony Niknejad will serve as Policy Director. Other additions include Caroline Davidson joining the finance team and Majority Strategies will lead the campaign’s direct mail efforts.

 “It’s humbling to have so many talented people join our efforts to help share my vision for Tennessee,” said Lee. “I’m grateful for the team we’re assembling. This is one more indicator of the excitement and enthusiasm we are seeing all across this state for our campaign.”   Continue reading

Diane Black launches campaign for governor — the video

The Tennessean’s report has a description of the video, which includes Black talking about her rise from humble beginnings and her willingness to fight against liberals and “weak-kneed” members of her own party.

“Most people in politics say the right things, but they never fight for the right things,” Black says in the 90-second clip. “They’re too meek or maybe even too weak … I don’t back down. Maybe’s it’s because I grew up in a family where we had nothing or maybe it’s because I was a single mom working in the night-shift as a nurse. It’s just how I’m wired.”

Black, 66, joins the race with the most name recognition of the five leading Republican contenders, polling suggests, and a track record of championing conservative causes in Congress.

…She touts her pro-life record and how she fought against a GOP-led state income tax plan when she was a state lawmaker.

“I believe in secure borders and tough choices in cutting spending and beating the liberals instead of caving into them,” she says.

…Black is one of the wealthiest members of Congress. In 2013, the assets of Black and her husband David Black, who in November retired as CEO of Aegis Sciences Corp., were valued at nearly $150 million.

The video was first posted on Black’s new gubernatorial campaign website, HERE.

Shelby County Mayor Luttrell backs Boyd for governor

From the Commercial Appeal:

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell on Wednesday endorsed Randy Boyd in the Tennessee gubernatorial Republican primary election.

Standing next to Boyd at Evolve Bank & Trust on Poplar in East Memphis, Luttrell emphasized Boyd’s business background, emphasis on education and heritage in West Tennessee. Boyd, who formerly headed up state economic development efforts under Gov. Bill Haslam, was born in Knoxville but has family on this side of the state.

Luttrell said he and Boyd became friends as they worked together on development and education initiatives for Shelby County. Boyd, who resigned as commissioner of Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development to run for governor earlier this year, managed Haslam’s “Drive to 55” and Tennessee Promise education initiatives as an un-paid adviser.

“Randy Boyd is an entrepreneur who has a passion for education,” Luttrell said before quipping that they were probably the only two people in the room who knew the location of Fruitvale, a small town northwest of Jackson.

From the Boyd campaign

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Tea party activist announces run for governor, vows to ‘drain our own swamp in TN’

Johnson City realtor and tea party activist Kay White officially her campaign for the Republican gubernatorial nomination Saturday at Jonesborough before a crowd of about 100 people, reports WJHL TV.

“I think we need to go back to some of the old values, of God, and country, and family, and good work ethics, that is what I believe in,” White said.

A check of the Registry of Election Finance website shows White has already filed the paperwork to raise money for her campaign. And there’s a campaign website, HERE, wherein White has a ‘drain the swamp’ comment echoing President Trump that’s somewhat similar to one by state Sen. Mae Beavers in announcing her candidacy for the GOP nomination. White had initially backed Beavers for governor, but the two had a subsequent parting of the ways (previous post HERE).

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House Speaker Gerald McCormick?

With Beth Harwell announcing her run for governor in 2018,  which means she can’t seek reelection to the House, state Rep. Gerald McCormick says he’s looking to succeed her as Speaker of the House in January, 2019, reports the Times-Free Press.

McCormick said with three two-year terms as majority leader under his belt — he chose not to seek the post last session and was named by Harwell in January as Finance subcommittee chairman — he believes he has “more experience probably than anybody else in the House dealing with governors and senators.”

“And that’s a lot of what the job entails, I think,” McCormick said. “I think I can step in on the first day and know what I was doing and try to get things moving in the right direction so far as our relationships with those folks go and understanding how the body works and how committees work.”

… McCormick’s successor as majority leader, former House Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada of Franklin, is seen as another possible candidate to replace Harwell.

“I’ll look at it this time next year,” Casada said of a possible bid for speaker. “I’ve got a year of a lot of members leaving — it’s the governor’s last term. So we’ve got a lot of work to go and as majority leader I’ve got to focus on that.

“I can’t take my eye off the ball of being majority leader for the next 12 months,” said Casada, who expects 10 to 12 of the 73 Republican incumbents, including Harwell, not to seek re-election to the House.

Asked earlier about the possibility of Casada running, McCormick noted the Franklin Republican hasn’t been involved in the Finance Committee, which participates in negotiations with senators over the state’s annual spending plan.

Moreover, McCormick noted that in six years, he carried any number of bills for the governor.

“So I’ve got more experience from that standpoint,” McCormick said.

Williamson County businessman Bill Lee wins Williamson County GOP gubernatorial straw poll

News release from Williamson County Republican Party

THOMPSON’S STATION, Tenn. — The Williamson County Republican Party held its annual summer BBQ  (Saturday night) tonight at Little Creek Farms in Thompson’s Station. A record sold-out crowd of 400+ guests attended, and 243 voted in the straw poll, making this the largest gubernatorial straw poll in recent Tennessee political history.

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Pence set as keynote speaker for TNGOP Statesmen’s Dinner Aug. 3

News release from Tennessee Republican Party

Nashville, Tenn. – July 15, 2017 – Tennessee Republican Party Chairman Scott Golden released the following statement on the 2017 Statesmen’s Dinner:

I am very excited to announce that the Tennessee Republican Party’s Keynote Speaker for the 2017 Statesmen’s Dinner will be Vice President Mike Pence. This is an exciting time for the Tennessee Republican Party as we continue to grow and gear up for 2018’s critical elections. With Vice President Mike Pence as our Keynote Speaker and Governor Bill Haslam as our Dinner Chair, we expect this will be one of the largest and most successful Statesmen’s Dinners to date. It will certainly be an event no Republican in Tennessee will want to miss.”

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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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