Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

Donald Trump Endorses Bill Lee for Governor of Tennessee

Donald Trump Endorses Bill Lee for Governor of Tennessee Donald Trump Endorses Bill Lee for Governor of Tennessee
Charlie Simmons | 06 August, 2018, 08:14

Here are five takeaways from the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races.

"There's a lot of things I don't personally like about Donald Trump, but he's the president of the United States and if he has an idea, and is pushing some things that I think are good for the people of Tennessee, I'm going to be for it". It's been an even longer drought in the Senate, with the last Democratic victor former Vice President Al Gore in 1990.

Easy primary wins Thursday just made it official. In the race for Senate, candidates were running to replace Republican Senator Bob Corker, who will retire at the end of his term; the election has become competitive for Democrats, despite Trump winning nearly every county in the state in 2016.

Lee defeated three other Republicans in a bruising primary for Tennessee governor Thursday, setting the stage for a competitive fall contest against former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, who cruised to the Democratic nomination.

Dean faces the GOP victor, either U.S. Rep. Diane Black, former state economic development chief Randy Boyd, businessman Bill Lee or state House Speaker Beth Harwell. NPR's Jessica Taylor reported, "In Tennessee, Phil Bredesen is trying to prove that national partisan divides can be overcome in the most surprising Senate battleground of 2018".

Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean thanks supporters at a victory party after winning the Democratic nomination for Tennessee governor Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018, in Nashville, Tenn.

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Trump did visit the state in May to stump for Blackburn - who spoke at his rally - but barely mentioned the Republican gubernatorial candidate.

The organization's financial investments in Blackburn's primary campaign were in the form of direct contributions, opposition research, a grassroots program and other efforts.

On Friday, another Republican candidate got what Black wanted in the primary: Trump tweeted his support for GOP nominee Bill Lee in the general election contest for governor. Corker, for one, has further complicated the race by saying he's supporting Blackburn but won't actively campaign against Bredesen, whom he has called a friend.

Lee declined to take overt swipes at his opponents when they started a heavy rotation of attack ads. Blackburn has aligned herself strongly with the White House and held public events in Tennessee with Trump and Pence.

Dean had a huge advantage in campaign cash, outspending Fitzhugh $4.4 million to $984,800.

Bredesen, who remains popular, would again need to peel off support from moderate Republicans and independents. In a press release, the group said it will continue to support her as she pursues the seat that will soon be vacated by the retiring Republican Sen.

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