Thursday, November 6, 2008

I Volunteer, Sir

As we closed into the final weeks of the campaign season 2008, an economic "crisis" was suddenly thrust upon us. Our politicians told us that "something must be done" and that that was the reason they drafted and enacted the CEO/corporate bailout bill, though they gave it a different name and marketed it as 'our salvation.'

Bart Gordon voted twice for the bill that was used to force the US Taxpayer to buy into our banks, whether or not they wanted it. Eighty percent of the electorate was against this measure. It was a wakeup call for me. I began searching for alternatives in the 6th District and found two opponents to the entrenched and powerful Washington Insider.

Chris Baker was on the ballot but that was about it. He had no money, no website and a websearch of him produced footnotes that he was running in a few scattered articles. His positions could not even be identified.

Steve Edmonson was waging a write-in campaign. He had come to the same realization as had I, a few months earlier. He has ran twice before against Bart, once on the Republican ticket and once as an Independent. Write-in campaigns are difficult to win and this one demonstrated less success than some others.

With this in mind, I rode through much of the District, from Cookeville to Woodbury. I noted the patriotism demonstrated by multiple flagpoles. I remembered conversations with so many citizens of our districts, conversations that demonstrated we have a bit more common sense here in Middle Tennessee and the Upper Cumberland, conversations that demonstrated our desire to self-determination and against government interference.

On November 5th, I looked at the results for the 6th and noted that Baker, who had not campaigned, who had no money, no website, and no publicity had garnered 25% of the vote. I asked a few people what they thought about it.

"Bart's been good to Murfreesboro." "Bart's been good to Cookeville." "Bart's been good to Woodbury." "Some people will always vote the party line." But when I asked if they had ever heard of Chris Baker, the answer was "no."

Do we know Bart? He gets a lot of positive press in Middle Tennessee. I'd like to hire his publicist. But who does he represent?

When I was researching the choices for the 6th in 2008, I found he had the 3rd largest campaign war chest of any Tennessee politician of the election year. Lamar Alexander and Fred Thompson had more. Rep. Gordon had gathered:
$1,264,951 in campaign dollars. But where did this money come from?
$791,551 From Political Action Committees! That's 62.6% of his donations.
$ 65,761 From 131 Tennessee Individuals. That's 5.4% from his "constituents!" But, that is not the whole story. Many of those individuals are from Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis or otherwise outside the district.
In fact of the few individuals contributing to his campaign, the second largest majority were from the District of Columbia.

With that in mind, I ask you: Who is his real constituency? How is it that Chris Baker who did nothing more (that I can determine) than put his name on the ballot, get 25% of the voted from the best financed Representative of Tennessee?

I am exploring the possibility of running against Representative Bart Gordon FOR the 6th District in 2010. I am not asking for your hard earned money. I will not pledge to avoid the money of the rich, the corporations, nor the PACs. I will pledge that I will represent OUR district, regardless of who pays for the campaign.

I have jokingly stated that I can win this district if only my distant relatives, most of whom have never met me and some of whom cannot remember my face will vote for me. I am unknown to them, because we are a prolific family who settled Middle Tennesse in the 1800's and much of my life I've served in the Military in distant lands, hunting down the enemies that would do us harm. We live in hollers, cities, and some of our ancestral land lies at the bottom of lakes created by the TVA. We believe in personal responsibility and self-determination. Our Family has served in every conflict this Nation has fought.

Representative Gordon, Candidates Edmonson & Baker: I ask for your endorsement.

I am a Veteran of Afghanistan and of Desert Storm. I will bring (Un)Common Sense from Middle Tennessee to Washington. I have devoted most of my adult life to serving this Nation. My campaign would be grass roots and internet based. I will gladly speak to the good citizens of Middle Tennessee, explain why my positions are what they are and who I am. I will gladly sit down with the local journalists of Our District.

And you can contact me TNTaylorFor-TN6th2010 @

Let me know your thoughts. Are we ready to send Common Sense to Washington? Are we ready to ask Rep Gordon to enjoy retirement? What are the issues you want addressed?

TNTaylor©2008, all rights reserved.


Chris said...

Mr. Taylor,
I laud your efforts and courage to step up to the plate. However, I would like to take a moment to clear the record. I did have a website for my campaign, I did have a nominal amount of money (hence the website), and I did do some campaigning. Your article paints me to be total ghost candidate. Admittedly, I did not have the exposure which I wished to have, but money speaks louder than words. Not having name recognition or the backing of a major party did not help matters much. People are reluctant to donate to unknown candidates. In hindsight, many things could have been done differently. Being the first time I have ever ran for public office, I say I did well for myself. I'm sorry that my message did not find you during this past election season. I have the letters and emails of those persons who were able to find my information. Therefore I can say with certainty that my message did reach voters from across the district. Unfortunately, it was not enough. Good luck to you in your future political aspirations. God bless and thank you for your service to our country.

Tennessee Taylor for 6th District -2010 said...

Mr. Baker,

I apologize for any misperceptions on my part or those I have created. My apology is more aptly listed in a full article here dated 20 Jan 2009.

TN Taylor