This time a week ago I was having supper with some friends when I was asked about the midterm elections. I said at the time, “This last week of campaigning will be as good as the horses in the home stretch of the Kentucky Derby.” I was wrong. It is even better. Do you realize that Tennessee had such a turnout in early voting, Secretary of State Tre Hargett just announced the 1,378,840 who have already voted this fall is less than 50,000 of the TOTAL votes in the midterms four years ago.
“We are already telling counties: Be ready,” Mark Goins, the state’s coordinator of elections, told the Nashville Tennessean. “We are going to have a historic midterm election,” he easily predicted after a 119 percent increase in early voting compared to 2014 – that’s over double and, mind you, this is Tennessee, the state said to have the worst voter turnout in the entire country.
Why the difference? From where I sit and watch I believe there is more angst – or is ‘foreboding’ now a better word? And every week it seems more vicious. I thought the liberals' response in the Kavanaugh hearings was the worst I had ever seen but there has been no let up.
The Tennessee Senate race between Marsha Blackburn and Phil Bredesen, which CNN has called the most important Senate race in the country, has easily surpassed $50 million in spending and who would have ever thought both Donald Trump and Mike Pence would be in Chattanooga to passionately call for more Marsha votes.
But it’s the mood that causes my worry. And some of these protesters – whether they are paid or not --are so wacky they are dangerous.
My heavens, not two hours up I-24 an effigy of Blackburn was just found hanging from a tree in Shelbyville. Of course, Shelbyville is home to radicals of both parties but with Chattanooga such an easy Sunday afternoon drive, mark my words the hecklers can hardly wait to descend on the UTC Arena late this afternoon.
Last week, after a bombing threat was uncovered against some Democrat politicians, Trump firmly spoke out. “No nation can succeed that tolerates violence or the threat of violence as a method of political intimidation, coercion or control.”
Yet not two weeks ago, Democrat Nancy Pelosi was helping with her party’s efforts in Florida when she stopped at a restaurant. A crowd moved in and the video – aired uncensored on several news outlets - was absolutely explosive.
“Look at Nancy Pelosi right here!!” came the lusty shouts. “Look at this piece of **** right here. ******* communist! You don’t belong here you (expletive)! Get the **** out of here!... you and your (expletive) Democrats!”
After she entered the building, the protesters then began pounding on the door and if that isn’t clearly ‘disturbing the peace’ then we have more than politics to worry about. If that unfolds in Chattanooga tonight, whoever should clearly be hauled to jail and, if I was king, I would have the paddy wagon already parked at the front door.
You’re going to love this: A group of what is being called some progressive women assembled for a totally nude group photo in Vermont and the only thing covering their genitals were signs that read, “Grab ‘em by their ballots!” this a play off a pre-election tape that was passed around to diss The Donald. Yep, if those progressives appear tonight, they go to jail too!
The boo birds were quick to jump on Obama in Florida over the weekend. At one point the former President had to admonish one jerk: “Sir, sir, don’t curse in front of kids, come on. Don’t do that in front of them, come on,” Obama calmly told one heckler.
Please, this to a former President of our country. According to a Huffington Post story, Obama tried to settle the crowd. “We’re OK, we’re OK, we’re OK,” he said after the unidentified person was reportedly removed by security and the crowd stopped chanting the ex-POTUS’ name.
“You know what? This is what I look forward to, is having a few hecklers to get me back in the mood. You know, it’s like, I enjoy that,” Obama tried to make light of the snarly mood. “You always gotta have a few in order to know that you’re on the campaign trail,” he said.
But later he was clearly irked by another heckler, “Hold on a second. Sir, sir. Here’s the deal, if you support the other candidates, then you should go support the other candidates. Don’t be here,” said Obama, before telling the heckler to not “come hollering here.”
That we have reached this point in our lack of civility and decorum is even more unbelievable than having the President and the Vice President here at the same time. Whew, we needed that extra hour of sleep.
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* -- The New York Times reports: “A consensus is emerging among Democratic and Republican strategists — based on public and private polling, early voting and likely turnout — that Democrats are on track to pick up about 35 seats in the House of Representatives in Tuesday's elections. Republicans now have a 23-seat House majority."
* -- THE BEST BUMPER STICKER: “Heaven has a wall and a strict immigration policy. Hell has open borders.”’