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Volume 79

Tennessee still focus of national attention

Published (Volume 79, No. 10)


For the latest local, state and national election coverage complete with maps, visit pacer.utm.edu/election starting Tuesday, November 7.

Tennessee has been at the center of a national media frenzy over this year’s mid-term elections. With talk of the Democrats usurping Republican control over the House and Senate this election, it is no wonder that Tennessee has been under the microscope of media and on the campaign trail of some of the larger political powers, especially considering the neck-and-neck Senate race in the state.

The latest poll numbers for the Harold Ford Jr. and Bob Corker Senate race show Corker up with 50.8-percent to Ford’s 44.4-percent, according to www.pollster.com, giving Corker a slight lead in a race that has been close since mid September.

While early poll results showed the Democrats possibly taking control of the Senate, the most recent numbers give Republicans a slight majority. States like Missouri, Montana, Maryland and Virginia still have poll results within the margin of error, making them too close to call either way.

While Republicans seem to have a slight lead in taking the Senate, Democrats have the overwhelming lead in taking the House. Tennessee’s incumbent House Representative, Democrat John Tanner, is expected to keep his seat.

Also on this year’s ballot are challenger, Republican Jim Bryson, and incumbent, Democrat Phil Bredesen in the battle for Governor. The latest polls put Bredesen with a cozy 62-percent over Bryson’s 30-percent.

Democrats may have something else to worry about besides Republican attack ads as far as discouraging voter turn out goes. “The Republicans Should Pray for Rain: Weather Turnout and Voting in U.S. Presidential Elections,” that will be published in the Journal of Politics next year, says that rain has historically kept Democratic voters from turning out. As of last Monday, today had a 60-percent chance of rain.