VOL. 129 | NO. 173 | Friday, September 5, 2014
Flinn Gets Republican State Senate Nomination
By Bill Dries
Fresh from running in the August U.S. Senate Republican primary, George Flinn is back on the Nov. 4 ballot as the Republican nominee in the special general election for state Senate District 30.
Flinn was chosen by acclamation and without opposition Thursday, Sept. 4, by members of the Shelby County Republican Party’s steering committee.
Local Democratic executive committee members choose their party’s nominee at Monday party meeting.
The state Senate seat at stake is the seat given up by Democrat Jim Kyle who was elected a Chancery Court Judge in the August elections with a term of office that began Sept. 1.
The winner of the special election in November will serve the two years remaining on Kyle’s Senate term of office.
“This is a tough race,” Flinn told Republican leaders at the East Memphis meeting in Clark Tower. “We are underdogs. But that’s never stopped us before. … We’ve got a good chance.”
The district is predominantly Democratic. But Flinn, who ran this summer in the statewide U.S. Senate primary challenging incumbent Senator Lamar Alexander and finished third, said there are undecided voters who could tip the balance and add another Senate seat in Nashville to the Republican super majority in that chamber.
The contenders for the Democratic nomination at Monday’s Midtown meeting of Democrats are former state Senator Beverly Marrero, former state Representative and Memphis City Council member Carol Chumney and former Tennessee Public Service Commissioner and Tennessee Regulatory Authority member Sara Kyle, who is Jim Kyle’s wife.
Local party members from state House districts within the Senate district are choosing the nominees because there is not time for a primary election under state law.
The process is a political rarity that prompted the Tennessee Attorney General’s office to issue an opinion on how the complex process should work.