Roy Exum: Two Wrongs Not Right

Saturday, July 26, 2014 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

Scottie Mayfield is a delightful friend of mine but he’s the last guy in the world who should be aiming at anybody’s character. He’s always had class but today Scottie is the “star” of a shameful political commercial in which he assails challenger Weston Wamp on

behalf of a panicked Chuck Fleischmann. Mayfield, you’ll remember, ran against the two in the last race for the District 3 seat in Congress.

You’ll also remember that Scottie was horribly embarrassed during the campaign when his son, caught up in his dad’s efforts, unwisely and uncharacteristically slashed a tire that belonged to one of Fleischmann’s campaign workers. Fleischmann’s crowd did a lot of grandstanding over the regrettable incident, making it a lot worse than it really was according to Scottie back then, and the newspaper trumpeted it big because the media evermore loves a spectacle.

Mayfield was terribly hurt by the negative publicity but – oh ho! -- now its Scottie’s turn to gloat like Chuck did two years ago because Mayfield, who finished second back then to Weston’s third, has somehow morphed into Fleischmann’s “honorary campaign chairman.” Back in March, the media made a big deal of Weston “secretly recording” a conversation he had with Mayfield. Wamp, who knows well of the Fleischmann camp’s delight in playing dirty, admitted he recorded what was said because he didn’t want to be misquoted about right now.

But that was five months ago. Because Fleischmann is growing increasingly desperate after Wamp mauled him in another debate that allegedly left Fleischmann in tears, Chuck’s handlers decided to reinvent the “secret recording” in a tacky commercial and it worked. It landed on the front page of the newspaper for the second time, this just days after both of the newspaper editorialists heartily endorsed Weston Wamp instead of the two-term incumbent who is laughingly known as “Do Nothing Chuck” or worse, according to the Chattanooga newspaper’s cartoonist.

There is a real good reason that both of the newspaper editors picked Wamp -- Fleischmann has done a lousy job. Anyone can go to the website Gov.Track.us and look at Chuck’s 2013 Report Card. Here is what you and Scottie Mayfield and anybody else will find:

* BILLS CO-SPONSORED -- Fleischmann (95) is the first lowest out of nine members on Congress from Tennessee and 58th lowest out of all 435 Representatives.

* JOINING BIPARTISAN BILLS – Fleischmann (2) is the first lowest out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and 11th lowest out of all 439 Representatives.

* BILLS INTRODUCED – Fleischmann (4) is the first lowest (tied with one) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and 63rd lowest (tied with 36) out of all 439 Representatives.

* POWERFUL CO-SPONSORS (with a chair or ranking member) – Fleischmann (zero) is the first lowest (tied with one) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and first lowest (tied with 137) out of all 439 Representatives.

* WORKING WITH THE SENATE – Fleischmann (zero) is the second lowest (tied with two) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and 152nd lowest (tied with 127) of all 439 Representatives.

* CO-SPONSORS –Fleischmann (31) is the third lowest out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and 140th lowest (tied with two) out of all 439 Representatives.

* MISSED VOTES – Fleischmann (one) is fourth lowest (tied with one) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and 156th lowest (tied with 20) out of all 432 Representatives.

* GOVERNMENT TRANSPARENCY – Fleischmann (zero) is the first lowest (tied with five) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and is 1st lowest (tied with 352) out of all 439 Representatives.

* LAWS ENACTED – Fleischmann (zero) is first lowest (tied with six) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and first lowest (tied with 392) out of all 439 Representatives.

* BILLS OUT OF COMMITTEE –Fleischmann (zero) is first lowest (tied with five) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and first lowest (tied with 259) out of all 439 Representatives.

* COMMITTEE POSITIONS – Fleischmann (zero) is first lowest (tied with five) out of nine members of Congress from Tennessee and first lowest (tied with 207) out of all 439 Representatives.

Does it not stand to reason that if a Congressman is the “lowest” in his state in eight of 11 categories and famously inept when compared to all of Congress, this according to GovTrack.us, he is probably – to cop a phrase – among “the worst of the worst” in Washington? And just how much did Weston Wamp’s “secret recording” have to do with any of it? Please! I hate sleaze, gutter politics and distracting flash-bangs when all that any voter needs to know what Fleischmann needs to hide -- the truth.

Stenny Hoyer (D-MD) became the 305th member of Congress to endorse the “Prevent All Soring Tactics” Act but all seven of Tennessee’s Republican representatives instead co-sponsored a badly watered-down alternate bill that people who abuse Tennessee Walking Horses are pushing hard. Imagine that!  By joining such a ruse, Fleischmann is hardy representing the wishes of his District 3 constituents and if you’ll ask any horse about Chuck every one of them will say “Neigh! Neigh!”

According to this week’s Rasmussen Reports, only 20 percent of Americans think their current representative is doing an adequate job but 69 percent agree most members of Congress don’t care what their constituents think. Are you kidding me? Chuck Fleischmann is the “worst of the worst” right now. 

Some say Weston Wamp is “too young,” every one of them conveniently forgetting their first day of work, and some cite his close relationship with his father, which men with sons duly cherish. But the wise voter will look at the far-more-disturbing facts rather than a silly recording or a punctured tire.

Scottie Mayfield should limit his appearances to ice cream because poor judgment at the hands of troublemakers who just two years ago hurt him has put a bad taste in the very mouths of those who voted for Scottie anyway.

Chuck Fleischmann? Hold him accountable when you go to the ballot box.

royexum@aol.com




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