The political arm of the Senate GOP on Monday slammed musical artists Ben Folds and Jason Isbell as members of the “unhinged left” ahead of a rally where they will perform in support of Tennessee Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) pointed to Folds’s support of Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill’s 12:30 Report: Milley apologizes for church photo-op Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness MORE (I-Vt.) in the 2016 presidential race and an anti-Trump comment by Isbell as evidence of “how far to the left Phil Bredesen is.”
“Despite Bredesen’s moderate act, he continues to embrace people who have made it a habit of insulting the Tennessee voters who proudly supported President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE,” NRSC spokesman Michael McAdams said in the statement. “Today’s fundraiser is the latest example that Phil Bredesen is completely out-of-touch with a majority of Tennesseans.”
ADVERTISEMENTFolds and Isbell will perform at the Our Country, Our Future event on Monday night, which the Democrat’s campaign has marketed as a coming-together of “Tennesseans of all political stripes who are excited about Bredesen’s candidacy,” according to The Tennessean.
Bredesen, who is running against Rep. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnGOP senators introduce resolution opposing calls to defund the police GOP senators dodge on treatment of White House protesters Five things to know about Trump’s legal power under the Insurrection Act MORE (R), served as the state’s governor from 2003 to 2011, making him the last Democrat to win statewide office in deep-red Tennessee.
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Democratic strategists have argued he could be uniquely positioned take back the seat currently held by Republican Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerGOP lawmakers stick to Trump amid new criticism Trump asserts his power over Republicans Romney is only GOP senator not on new White House coronavirus task force MORE, who is retiring.
Bredesen’s campaign responded to the NRSC’s comments noting that Folds played at the Republican National Convention and saying “the swamp” should take a closer look at Blackburn’s “ties to hate groups and Russian nationals.”
“Jason Isbell is a champion for working men and women,” Laura Zapata, Bredesen’s communications director, said in a statement to local outlet The Tennessean. “Ben Folds is a leading advocate for arts education and he even played at the Republican National Convention. The swamp needs to spend less time worrying about these popular recording artists and more time looking into Marsha Blackburn’s ties to hate groups and Russian nationals, and her illegal coordination with dark-money groups in Washington.”
The NRSC pointed to an Isabell interview where he said of Christian Trump supporters, “God is gone from those people.”
“I’ve been in the paper a few times now, but this one is my favorite,” Isabell tweeted, responded to The Tennessean’s report of the NRSC statement. “This is one I’ll be proud to show my grandkids.”
I’ve been in the paper a few times now, but this one is my favorite. This is one I’ll be proud to show my grandkids. https://t.co/rUhhalbmfE
— Jasoñ Isbell (@JasonIsbell) August 20, 2018