The Democrats' favorite spittle-flecked Republican, Zach Wamp, lets his loony flag fly on the campaign trail 

Zach Wamp says if Tennessee will only outlaw abortion, God will give our state new jobs and a booming economy. According to Wamp, God already has blessed the economy of his hometown of Chattanooga for keeping abortion clinics out of the city.

"Let me tell you one of the reasons why Chattanooga is a very blessed city today, why we have so much new economic development and why we're really an anointed city," the eight-term congressman said at a Tennessee Tea Party convention this summer in Gatlinburg.

"There are no abortion clinics in Chattanooga. We made a decision. We made a decision a long time ago that we were going to work as a community to not allow abortion clinics in our city, and I got to tell you we're trying to be after God's own heart. I mean it's hard to say that. Lincoln said, we don't claim to have God on our side but we strive to be on his. And that's the deal here. People who seek righteousness and the right thing are blessed and anointed. Our city is blessed. Our state will be blessed as we remove this scourge and plague of killing innocent children in the womb."

We hope God realizes this state can't ban abortions unless the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade. Maybe Wamp will let God know this. We wouldn't want to anger Wamp's God. He might decide to punish us (we're imagining a very scary plague of spiders!) and it wouldn't even be our fault.

Two abortion clinics operate in Nashville "so maybe that's why we had this thousand-year flood," Planned Parenthood's Jeff Teague says.

"It's all the same line of thinking," Teague says. "God's going to punish you because you're an evil city because people drink and party and have a good time, or God's going to bless you because you don't have an abortion clinic. That's not the way my God operates."

We phoned Teague and read Wamp's remarks to him. Indeed, Teague says, there are no abortion clinics in Chattanooga. We asked how Chattanooga legally could bar them from the city. "Oh, they can't," Teague says. When Wamp says the city decided not to allow clinics, he probably means Chattanooga's abortion opponents vowed to intimidate any physician who tried to open one.

"He's probably talking about the usual intimidation and terrorist tactics" employed by abortion foes all over the country, Teague says.

In the governor's race, Wamp has hopped aboard the crazy train for a wild ride around the bend. His rants have become so zany that he's the clear favorite now of Democrats in the August Republican primary. A Wamp victory would do wonders for Mike McWherter's sleepy little campaign. Immediately after Wamp's nomination, donations for McWherter would shoot through the roof.

"I'm going to be a Rick Perry kind of governor, and we need that in Tennessee as we go forward," Wamp said at another forum for candidates. That's Texas' Rick Perry, who has suggested that his state could secede from the Union and who rejected hundreds of millions of dollars in federal stimulus money for the jobless.

Wamp is comfortable in the company of secessionists. At every campaign stop, he basically tries to incite an armed rebellion, threatening to meet President Obama at the border personally to stop him from confiscating our guns.

At the Tea Party convention, he said he sleeps with a gun next to his head. It's not paranoia if the federal government really is out to get you, is it?

"I'm just telling you, Tennesseans, because there are some tough times coming," Wamp warns. "Don't elect some sissy wannabe as your governor. It's time for tough people standing up to protect what we have left in this country."

Wamp also says he thinks it's good for wildlife for coal companies to blow the tops off Tennessee's mountains, and he scoffs at the science of climate change because he shivered a little bit this winter. It was cold outside, therefore global warming is a myth.

One more very important thing to know about Wamp: Don't call him a wild man! It upsets him. He's not feral, OK? At one recent appearance, he informed the audience out of the blue that he's tired of everybody thinking he's a hot-tempered lunatic looking to pick fights. He was really hot about it, in fact, and ready to fight about it.

"I was hailed for my bipartisanship until I became a candidate for governor, and now some would have you think that I'm just a wild man wanting to fight," Wamp said. "But there are certain things worth fighting for. And I am a fighter."

Wamp is too smart to talk crazy in his TV ads, which focus on how he'd try to improve the state's economy. Funny, but his plan doesn't mention banning abortion.

Email editor@nashvillescene.com

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