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Upset TNDems want to recall Republicans

There’s an effort afoot in the Volunteer State to amend Tennessee state law to allow voters to recall state elected officials. From their Facebook page:

This page serves to educate voters and lawmakers on amending Tennessee state law to empower voters with the right to recall state elected officials.

Tennessee voters have shown a great deal of prudence in their use of the state’s current recall law in local county politics. It’s time to give Tennessee voters the power to recall state elected officials as well by amending T.C.A. 2-5-151.

17 other states empower voters with the right to recall state elected officials. Just like Tennessee’s current recall law, they are rarely ever used.

Tennessee currently has an “ouster law” (T.C.A. 8-47-101), but this law only protects voters from criminal politicians. It doesn’t protect voters from politicians who lie in the interview process and then switch to their own personal agendas and that of outside groups and donors.

The state’s current recall law works so well, not a single state lawmaker has tried to repeal it. If we’re going to treat government like a business, it’s time to give the real boss the power to fire politicians who feel entitled to a full term of insubordination. Let’s protect Tennessee from politicians who serve themselves before the great state of Tennessee.

While “Recall TN” – as it is being termed – does not expressly announce a partisan slant, the organization is no doubt the creation of liberal Democrat activists, who have seen their influence dwindle in recent elections. A full 80% of the other pages “Recall TN” supports are either Democrat in nature or of a left-of-center slant. Also, most of the chatter on the “wall” is of a Democrat nature.

Just as in Wisconsin, they’re undoubtedly hoping to capitalize on the populist idea of throwing out elected Republicans who make tough decisions in state government.

As I’ve said before, we already have a process to recall politicians. It’s called the next election. Unless a politician does something illegal or unethical, they were elected to serve a term mandated by law.

Just because you don’t like something a politician does, that doesn’t mean they’re not doing what they think is in the best interest of the electorate.

Seems to me “Recall TN” is made up of a bunch of sore losers, who don’t appreciate the democratic process of elections.

August 9, 2011   No Comments

TN Frosh raise some $$$

Right At Home blog dug into the 2nd Quarter fundraising numbers for Tennessee’s freshman Republican Members of Congress yesterday:

The [OpenSecrets.org] article goes on to list the top 10 and bottom 10 fundraisers in the second quarter, and none of the four freshmen from Tennessee made either list.

Just how did they fare?

Diane Black (TN06) and Stephen Fincher (TN08) both exceeded the average in Q2, with $297,929 (#22) and $271,728 (#28), respectively. Chuck Fleischmann (TN03) and Scott Desjarlais (TN04) fell considerably further down the list, with Fleischmann coming in at #60 with $147,041 and Desjarlais hitting #63 with $141,585.

For the first and second quarters combined, the four rank a little higher compared to their colleagues, but stack up similarly against each other:

#16      Diane Black (TN06)                    $556,561

#21      Stephen Fincher (TN08)          $521,874

#55      Scott Desjarlais (TN04)            $277,875

#56      Chuck Fleischmann (TN03)   $274,540

A major reason for Black’s being at the top of the TN heap appears to be her PAC fundraising – measuring PAC contributions as a percentage of her total fundraising, she really stands out from the rest of the TN heap. She has a significantly higher percent of PAC contributions that the rest of the Tennessee freshmen:

Black – 60%

Fleischmann – 38%

Fincher – 37%

Desjarlais – 35%

It’s interesting to see that Fincher has raised nearly as much as Black (93% of her year to date total), but is almost exactly the mirror image of her PAC to Individual contribution ratio. Is that a difference that matters to voters?

RAH poses the question, does it matter where the money comes from? Writing anecdotally, I think this really only matters to opponents. I haven’t ever seen a time when people really got fired up about fundraising data, except around reporting periods or if someone took money from some shady character like Hassan Nemazee.

As a numbers guy myself, I’ve dug into the state-level reports for the 2nd Quarter. Not much there at the moment because they only recently adjourned.

Clarksville Democrat State Senator Tim Barnes looks kind of weak with only about $6,000 on hand. State Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Sargent has nearly $77,000 on hand. Rutherford County State Representative Joe Carr has about $6,000 in the bank.

I’ll dig more into these numbers in a few days.

By the way, if you’re a Republican and you want help fundraising, drop me a line.

July 21, 2011   No Comments

Planned Parenthood TN loses $335k in state funding

According to LifeNews:

The de-funding of the Planned Parenthood abortion business in Nashville, Tennessee became official on Friday as the state shifted the funds to the city’s health department.

As North Carolina, Indiana, Kansas and Wisconsin became the nucleolus of states to de-fund or cut Planned Parenthood funding, Tennessee joined them as Nashville’s public health department agreed earlier this month to accept all available family planning funds and to provide the required services to targeted populations. As a result, 94 of 95 Tennessee counties now accept all available Title X funds from the state Department of Health and provide the required birth control services themselves rather than forcing taxpayers to fund the nation’s biggest abortion business.

In Nashviile, the Davidson County health department took over the $335,000 federal grant that used to go to Planned Parenthood for family planning. On Friday, the funds were officially diverted.

Jeff Teague, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Middle and East Tennessee, tried to put a good face on the news in an interview with the Tennessean.

“One of the things that’s been really interesting about this whole experience is that it has been a wonderful opportunity to educate,” Teague said. “In a real weird, perverse way, it’s helped people learn more about what Planned Parenthood does.”

Despite fighting the de-funding at every turn, Teague tried to make it appear Planned Parenthood didn’t want the funds.

“The board had had discussions about the wisdom of staying in (and continuing to receive the grant) and had basically decided that it would not be in our best interest to,” Teague said. “We started months and months and months ago planning on not having the funds available.”

Teague also claimed that the public exposes of Planned Parenthood, which has been caught covering up cases of sexual abuse and assisting sex traffickers in arranging abortions for young women, have led to an increase in public support.

But Brian Harris, of Tennessee Right to Life, said he is happy the abortion agency is no longer getting tax dollars in the state capital.

“Planned Parenthood is an abortion business. They derive their income from the killing of unborn children and the harming of women during an especially vulnerable time in their life,” Harris said. “It is inappropriate for tax dollars to go to … such an agency.”

July 8, 2011   No Comments