October 15, 2007
Is District 4 (TN Senate) a lock for reclamation by the GOP?
[Update: It occurred to me that the original post title may have led one to believe that I'm speculating about Tennessee's 4th Congressional district, currently held by U.S. Rep. Lincoln Davis, D-Pall Mall. In fact, the post is about the 4th District of the Tennessee State Senate. If you knew that, carry on...]
State Senator Mike Williams, District 4, departed the GOP and declared himself independent in March of this year. It would be wrong to say that he "formally" left the Republican Party, because Tennessee has no registration by party. Candidates, however, do file for the ballot as either Democratic, Republican, or Independent. As Williams is planning to run for re-electiion — which, incidentally, naturally makes him a prime target in a part of the state that has elected Republicans essentially since there have been Republicans — he stands to be the first independent elected to the Tennessee legislature since 1982, according to Ballot Access News. ("Independent" can mean any number of things here, as ballot access hurdles prevent other parties from being able to list candidates, but Williams is not affiliated with a minor party.)
Enter Church Hill, TN attorney Mike Faulk, whose family (of Republicans, one would assume) has lived in the district for nearly a dozen generations. Never mind this candidate's qualifications (which, to be clear, are not being disputed here). The state party is rolling out the red carpet for him with spectacular vigor. They held a fundraiser last week in Nashville where dignitaries such as former Gov. Winfield Dunn and current Congressman Marsha Blackburn (her preference is not to be called "Congresswoman") helped raise money for the challenger.
Meanwhile, blogger David Oatney wonders if the incumbent even realizes that these forces are lining up so strongly toward defeating him.
Stay tuned for more on this race. The power of incumbency is nothing to be taken lightly, yet Republicans across the state are vowing to overcome it. Perhaps they should consult with Senator Lowe Finney.
State Senate Elections | By joe lance | 10:40 PM