Tuesday, May 31, 2005


Roundtable: Tennessee GOP Senate field down to 3?

Blogging for Bryant has posted that Teddy Bart's Roundtable has leaked that one of the GOP Senate possibilities will be bowing out by the end of the week.

B4B predicts that it is Beth Harwell, which I suspect is correct. There are a few questions, though. The first question is: who benefits the most? My answer is that I believe Ed Bryant benefits the most, followed by Van Hilleary. Ed receives a duel benefit - one less candidate to compete for funding in one of his stronger fundraising areas (Belle Meade), plus he can pull votes out of the Nashville suburbs. Van can also tap into some of the votes that Beth would have pulled, but - call it a hunch - I don't see a monetary benefit for Van following Beth's predicted removal from the race. The big loser is obviously Bob Corker. He doesn't need to worry about campaign funding, and having one less conservative in the race to divide the conservative electorate only makes the moderate-liberal Corker more exposed. If the conservatives unify behind one candidate, then Corker's campaign is toast.

The second question is: will Beth Harwell run for governor? I have previously posted that it was in her best interests to switch to the governor's race and clear the field before several second-tier candidates (not necessarily second-tier in my book, but certainly so in the all-important name-recognition category) flooded the primary ballot. I suspect that Beth will jump into the race for the Governor's Mansion, and such a move will lock Hilleary into the Senate race (and, thus, seal his fate). It should be an interesting week...

You're leaving out the fact that Corker probably has more vote garnering capabilities in Nashville than Ed. He has strong connections from his stint with the state. He will also make inroads with the less conservative Repubs. in Nashville.
Beth wasn't getting any votes, so it really won't affect the race at all. Her half of a percentage point won't really move the race much.

In response to predictable yawn's posts, I doubt having connections in Nashville will be a real selling point with the grassroots primary voter--especially on the heels of the Tn Waltz sting.

Don't forget either, the fat lady hasn't sung yet regarding Sundquist. Stamps entered a plea bargain--maybe he'll roll on a few more "connections."
Anonymous -

I agree that the Stamps situation could certainly have an impact on this race still - and that would most likely hurt the GOP candidate with the most significant ties to Sundquist.

Now who could that be?


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