After weeks of laying low while his gubernatorial opponents pick on each other, Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey joined the club and fired off a few shots at them Thursday.
Ramsey, the Senate Speaker seeking the GOP nomination for governor, outlined a bit of his campaign strategy to reporters Thursday. When the time is right, he’ll be criticizing one candidate for being part of the problem in Washington and another for joining up with gun-grabbers when it seemed politically expedient, said Ramsey.
“I try to keep in mind this is a marathon, not a sprint. We’re still five months away (from the primary election),” he said.
The lieutenant governor said he’ll draw attention to how Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam joined a mayoral coalition against guns. Haslam has since left that group.
Ramsey plans to also call out Haslam for being a child of privilege who was handed a job running a national company, whereas Ramsey began his own business from scratch.
Ramsey said U.S. Congressman Zach Wamp, another candidate for the GOP nomination, won’t escape the crosshairs either.
Wamp, who has fashioned himself lately as a staunch 10th Amendment advocate, said that as governor he’d “meet the federal government at the state line” to defend state’s rights.
But that kind of talk rings a little hollow from a guy who’s “been up there (in Washington) for 16 years,” said Ramsey.
“Who’s he going to meet? Himself?” asked Ramsey.
Ramsey has held back much of his public political attacks while his opponents fought against themselves this month.
Wamp and Shelby County District Attorney General Bill Gibbons, a final Republican candidate for governor, have been hammering away at Haslam for running an expensive TV ad six months before the August primary, not to mention harping on his as-yet undisclosed financial ties to the Haslam’s family-owned Pilot Corp., a national truck-stop company.
“I supposed when they’re attacking there’s no need to pile on,” said Ramsey.
The primary election is in August.