PHOTO: Marsha Blackburn speaking at the Williamson County Enrichment Center in Franklin on Wednesday / Photo by Alexander Willis
BY ALEXANDER WILLIS
Well over a hundred residents poured into the Williamson County Enrichment Center in Franklin on Wednesday for a Get Out the Vote Grassroots rally featuring U.S. Senate Republican nominee Marsha Blackburn and Tennessee Governor Republican nominee Bill Lee.
Also speaking at the event was Tennessee Senate member Jack Johnson and Franklin Mayor Ken Moore.
“Keep America Great” shirts and hats dotted the audience as Moore introduced the first speaker to the crowd, Tennessee Senator Johnson.
Johnson explained how Republicans had only controlled the state government in Tennessee since 2010, and listed a litany of achievements made throughout the last few years.
“I had a front row seat to that momentous occasion when Republicans took over our state government,” Johnson said. “We did what Republicans do; we cut taxes by $800 million dollars, we eliminated the Inheritance tax, the Hall Income tax, we reduced the sales tax on food, we streamlined our state government, we cut regulations, we passed a constitutional amendment to forever ban state income tax in the state of Tennessee.”
Johnson represents District 23 in the Tennessee Senate, which encompasses Williamson County, and is up for reelection this November. Johnson’s opponent in the race is Kristen Grimm, the first Democrat to run for the seat since 2006.
“We have the lowest unemployment rate now in the history of the state of Tennessee,” Johnson said. “Williamson County has the lowest unemployment in the state – that’s a good thing. Why do I say all this? It’s because there are people in this state, and in this county even, who would like to see control back to the Democrats. Do we want that to happen?”
In a short speech, Lee called Williamson County his “home county,” and spoke of Tennessee’s role in the country as a state of leadership.
“I do believe that Tennessee can lead the nation, and I do believe that this nation needs some states to lead, and we can be one of them with the right leadership,” Lee said. “I would be honored to serve you, and all Tennesseans, as that leader.”
Blackburn took center stage following Lee, critiquing her opponent, Phil Bredesen, saying he would only answer to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
“I will tell you right now, Tennessee is not going to be the state to hand the U.S. Senate to the Democrats,” Blackburn said. “Tennesseans know that a vote for Phil Bredesen is a vote for Chuck Schumer, who would be his boss. Tennesseans know a vote for Phil Bredesen is a vote for Dianne Feinstein, a vote for Elizabeth Warren.”
The audience reacted negatively to the mention of Warren, with some booing and saying “Pocahontas,” a nickname given to the Massachusetts Senator by President Trump.
“Tennesseans also know that Phil Bredesen wanted Hillary Clinton to be president,” Blackburn said. “Tennesseans know if Hillary Clinton were president, you would not have the economic growth. You wouldn’t have started building the wall to secure the southern border. You wouldn’t have gotten rid of the individual mandate from the Affordable Care Act. You would not have had the tax cuts, and Tennesseans know Phil Bredesen said they were crumbs, and he would have voted against them.”
“The Democrats keep saying that they’ve got a blue wave that is going to hit,” Blackburn said. “I keep saying that it is going to run into the great red wall when it gets here.”
— Alexander Willis (@ReporterWillis) October 18, 2018
Early voting began on Wednesday, and will continue through November 1. For voting locations in Williamson County and further details, click here.