The chairman of the Tennessee Young Republicans said Monday that the party will fare very well in the upcoming election.
Jeremy Durham of Brentwood told the Chattanooga Pachyderm Club, "Our poll numbers are even better than we expected. They show us having a very, very good year."
He said he expects Republicans to pick up between 54 and 60 House seats.
Mr. Durham, an attorney, said getting a Republican majority is necessary in order to topple current House Speaker Kent Williams and to give Republicans redistricting control.
He said, "Kent Williams is going to help those who put him in place."
The speaker, who is originally from McNairy County, said Bill Haslam, Republican nominee for governor, "is really working well with our candidates. He's got star power and he's using it to help our candidates."
Mr. Durham said a challenger to former House Speaker Jimmy Naifeh "is in play," though he said Naifeh is expected to dump $250,000 into his re-election.
He said the Young Republican group has raised $20,000 to help candidates in the Nov. 2 election.
Rep. Richard Floyd, who was at the meeting, said the GOP is contending in 77 of the 99 House contests. He said that is the most in history.
He said, "It's so important that we take back control of the House. I'll cut my wrists if Kent Williams is speaker again."