Chris Devaney says U.S. Senate candidate Manny Sethi has lined up the same campaign team that Bill Lee utilized to pull off an upset win in the last governor's race.
Mr. Devaney, a Lookout Mountain resident, led that effort and last June he left the Lee administration to launch the campaign for the "conservative outsider surgeon" who wants to step into the seat long held by Lamar Alexander.
He told members of the Pachyderm Club that Dr. Sethi has almost $2 million in cash on hand. He said it appears that is about the same as Bill Hagerty, the other major candidate, from his reading of reports from his campaign. He acknowledged that Mr. Hagerty has the endorsement of President Donald Trump, but said that is natural "since he was his ambassador." Hagerty officials later said they have over $3 million.
Mr. Devaney said Dr. Sethi "is not the establishment candidate. They kept trying to get him not to run."
But he said Dr. Sethi "is an exceptional man with the background and principles" to serve in the national office.
The former state Republican Party chairman noted that his parents, who are both doctors, came to the U.S. from India "legally." He said Manny Sethi learned from his father that "it's not how much money you have, it's the difference you make in lives."
Mr. Devaney said Dr. Sethi earlier "was led to Christ, and it is his Christian values that drive him."
He said Manny Sethi is staunchly pro-life and pro second amendment and wants to work toward immigration reform as well as completing the southern border wall.
Mr. Devaney said the Sethi team has leadership in all 95 counties and is holding 6-7 events a day.
He said he has been urging Dr. Sethi to come out more on the campaign trail, saying, "The more that people get to know him the more they are going to like him."
The speaker said he would have liked to have Dr. Sethi making his own presentation to the Pachyderm Club, "but he is in surgery today."