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VOL. 133 | NO. 181 | Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Bredesen Says Senate Race is Different Than Previous Statewide Runs

By Bill Dries

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Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Phil Bredesen says his fourth statewide campaign is different. It’s different even from the two campaigns for Nashville mayor before his three campaigns for governor.

Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Phil Bredesen waves to parade goers along Park Avenue while campaigning Saturday, Sept. 8 at the annual Southern Heritage Classic Parade.
(Daily News/Jim Weber)

“When I first started when I ran for mayor of Nashville, it was kind of all about television,” Bredesen told a group of several dozen in Germantown on Saturday, Sept. 8. “And then as time went on, social media became more important. ... I think we are really coming back to the day like it was a while ago, when it is really personal contact where people really get their reliable information.”

On a nearby white board, the tally of doors knocked on in Shelby County for Bredesen’s Senate campaign was at 69,000.

“TV is still a very important part of any campaign,” Bredesen said later. “Now there is social media. … We’ve put a lot more energy and frankly resources into getting out the vote and knock on doors effort than I ever have in a campaign.”

Republican nominee U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn was campaigning Saturday at the Soybean Festival in Martin, Tennessee, as Bredesen marched in the Orange Mound Parade and tailgated at the Southern Heritage Classic at the Liberty Bowl. Rain and lightning cancelled the annual football match up.

The Women United for Bredesen campaign gathering at Germantown Village Square was between the parade and tailgating.

Bredesen returns to Memphis on Thursday for a campaign forum on the date he and Blackburn were to debate at Rhodes College. Blackburn bowed out of the Memphis appearance.

“I was actually hoping to have a debate down here with my opponent,” Bredesen said Saturday with the partisan crowd responding with boos. “I’m trying to be a senator for all of the state. I’ve come to love Memphis. There’s a lot of grit here. It’s a city of enormous possibilities.”

The Senate race now features third-party ads on behalf of both Bredesen and Blackburn – ads financed by outside groups that by law are not supposed to coordinate with what the candidates are doing.

The pro-Blackburn third-party ads include one accusing Bredesen of raising taxes as governor and building a “party cave” below the governor’s mansion.

The pro-Bredesen third-party ad refers to “Air Blackburn” and Blackburn’s junkets as a member of Congress.

“It’s a little frustrating for us because you have no control over them. You can’t have any kind of communication. It’s illegal to make contact with them or communicate with them,” Bredesen said of the ads. “So, you worry about what your opponent will do. You also worry about what your friends will do.”

Bredesen said he would like to see more information about the ads beyond simply a name of the group.

Bredesen has responded to the third-party ads about his time as governor, saying they untrue and directing much of the blame to Blackburn.

PROPERTY SALES 36 154 6,546
MORTGAGES 34 94 4,129
BUILDING PERMITS 201 554 15,915
BANKRUPTCIES 43 126 3,396