Wednesday, January 11, 2006


Scandal-Plagued Bredesen Wins Second Term

Regular readers of this site know that I am lax to engage in rumor and innuendo. However, I feel safe in publishing the following thoughts because I have heard this from multiple sources - both in Tennessee and inside the Beltway - and have come to the conclusions below.

I feel the Conservatore Dall'Est's pain. The lack of a gubernatorial candidate is one of the greatest GOP failures in my lifetime. In an election year with a U.S. Senate seat up for grabs, several career state legislators looking vulnerable thanks to corruption within the Tennessee General Assembly, and a constitutional amendment prohibiting gay marriage on the ballot, 2006 stood to be a banner year to prove the media wrong, that conservatism was still deeply rooted in the South and that Tennessee was more of a "red state" than many (including Lamar Alexander) believe. With scandal after scandal proving that Governor Bredesen was nothing more than the emperor that lacked clothing, things seemed a bit too perfect.

And that is the case. Sources both within our borders and connected within D.C. are telling me that the GOP will not field a challenger to Governor Bredesen in 2006. From what I have heard, Beth Harwell will announce that she will not seek the office by the end of the month, and the only action by the GOP in the race for the Governor's Mansion might be to add a late (read: late March or early April) name to the ballot as nominal opposition to the vulnerable Bredesen.

So, what does this mean?

1) Democrats will be bolstered by the move, seeing the GOP as vulnerable in Tennessee. Look for actual Democratic campaigning when the 2008 presidential election begins, as compared to Kerry's invisibility in the state in 2004.

2) Bredesen will seek federal office when his term as governor concludes. That certainly could include a presidential run in 2012. If he can perform this poorly and still appear so unbeatable as to not draw opposition in a state that has been in GOP-control for the past several election cycles, the DNC will be most interested in keeping Bredesen in the fold in hopes of bottling his mojo.

3) The 2006 Senate race becomes much more interesting. First, money that would have gone into a GOP gubernatorial candidate now will flow into the GOP Senate primary. This should help Bryant, Hilleary, and Moder more than Corker, who already has enough money for the campaign (despite what he is telling everyone). It will also help Corker and Moder in their fight to gain name recognition, because there isn't another race hogging the spotlight. (Of course, given Corker's celestial negative numbers - which are unfathomably equal to his positive responses - he shouldn't believe that the key to victory is name recognition, because those that know who he is are equally divided in their reactions.)

4) Tennesseans can look forward to 4 more years of cronyism, sex scandals, state funds buying corporate interests, pretend TennCare cuts, expansion of the Pre-K financial nightmare, a state lottery that operates beyond the law, and business-as-usual under the pathetic "manager," Phil Bredesen. Of course, I guess the GOP plan is to wait until 2010, when we can be proud of Governor Marsha Blackburn.

I'm with my friend, Conservatore Dall'Est. This is extremely disappointing. The worst part is not knowing who to blame. Much like the 2002 Hilleary campaign, one has to wonder who is really pulling the strings. I have a sneaking suspicion that the puppetmasters may be beyond our borders, but I certainly can't prove that.

Again, nothing here is the Gospel. This could all be laid to waste over the next couple of weeks, and a challenger may descend from heaven to vanquish Bredesen. From what I have been told, though, that is the stuff of legend and not in Tennessee's future.

I truly hope that you are wrong about the GOP not fielding a candidate this year, especially since the Bredesen is ripe for the picking.

We could run someone straight off the street and have a shot. Perhaps you should might win...seriously, anyone who runs has a chance to beat Bredesen.
To quote what you said in the article; "a challenger may descend from heaven to vanquish Bredesen." This is exactly what I am praying for. The fact of the matter is, here in TN we can't get much worse of a governor. The one we have just dumped almost half a million people off the Tenncare system including those with serious mental illness. It was cruel and heartless to those who truly already had a tough enough life. It directly effected my loved one, and as a result affected our entire family. She could not get effective treatment from competent professionals. So, regardless of which party you affiliate yourselves with, for all those who think that the Tenncare issue is all about some worthless low-life who wants to suck off the state's system, think again. Diagnosed with a serious and persistent mental illness brought on by probable medical malpractice, my loved one legitimately needed rest on the state's social mat and had it ripped out from under her in the most barbaric of ways. Not only that, it was un-American.....not to mention, the process and transition (I use that word loosely) was inexcusably disorganized. I have heard the excuse that Bredesen had to deal with a program that was failing miserably before he got into office. That's beside the point. The health and well-being of the people MUST first. It's that simple. It's a matter of morality, priorities, and principles. The Tenncare CRISIS is not about Republicans and Democrats. It's merely about people~ and both groups have tragically missed the mark. Without saying much more, Very BAD governing on Bredesen's part. Please GOP (or Democrats for that matter) don't let any more suffer.
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