Yesterday, the folks over at Tennessee Fully Exposed had a question: Did state GOP Chairman Chris Devaney implicitly endorse the Senior Senator in a primary? That would be a party no-no.
More importantly — GOP control of the U.S. Senate is in reach. With Tennessee's Lamar Alexander on the ballot, we have a chance to help put Republicans in control of that chamber, too. And with all of Congress under GOP leadership, we can bottle up the Obama agenda.
The date on this, August 30, is a full 10 days after Joe Carr announced his candidacy for the Senate, so this would appear to be a violation of party rules, right?
Apparently the mailer in question had been approved and in the works since July 31, according to a statement from the state party's direct mail firm, Steve Brown Direct Marketing, last week:
“As the Tennessee Republican Party’s mail vendor, we routinely work with the TNGOP to approve letters for prospective donors. The letter in question was approved July 31st — well before there was any formally announced opposition to Senator Alexander. The letter was meant to attract new donors, and has been very successful at doing so, and should not be viewed as an endorsement.”
So, to break it all down ...
1) Fundraising letter goes out
2) Tea party-related group cries foul
3) State party and direct mail guys give an explanation
4) Tea party-related group makes an attack they know to be false
Inside baseball? Sure. It's instructive, though, of how many punches are going to be thrown below the belt in this race. Apparently, you can never let the truth get in the way of a good hatchet job.