In this ad, Bill Haslam's campaign claims he helped develop the Haywood County industrial megasite, one of the state's biggest job-creating ventures. This news came as a great surprise to anyone who knows anything about it. We all thought credit went to Gov. Phil Bredesen and the legislature, which OKed the project's funding despite the reservations of certain Republicans. Senate Republicans actually deleted funding from the state budget at one point, but put it back in after Bredesen complained. He used the word "stupid" to describe the Republican plans. Remember that? We asked the Haslam campaign to tell us how the Knoxville mayor helped out Haywood County, and here is campaign flack David Smith's response:
"Mayor Smith called up Mayor Haslam, who understood and appreciated what Mayor Smith was doing and the potential impact the Megasite could have in West Tennessee. He wanted to help out any way he could, so he made some calls to help raise awareness of the importance of the project."
That sounds like BS to Pith—and to Sen. Jim Kyle who just happened to be walking past the Legislative Plaza pressroom a minute ago. We asked whether Haslam helped develop the megasite, and Kyle replied, "I'm sure the mayor's a great guy, but that is beyond an overstatement."
Can you believe that a politician would try to take credit for something he didn't do? We're beginning to wonder if Haslam really likes chocolate pie.