Devaney: TNGOP a ‘Shining Light’ to Nation

A top Republican strategist says his party won big in Tennessee because voters are “gravitating to the message” Volunteer State GOP politicians communicate.

Now, Republicans in Tennessee couldn’t really ask to be in a better position to execute the policy measures they say will propel the state along a path of economic prosperity, fiscal responsibility and social conservatism.

“Tennessee, I think, is a shining light and an example across the country for what we can do,” Chris Devaney, chairman of Tennessee’s Republican Party, told

In fact, Devaney said he sees no reason his party’s historic supermajorities in the House and Senate won’t continue to grow in 2014.

“It’s about job-creation and education … tax reform, legal reform, all of that, and people just keep gravitating to that message,” said Devaney, who added: “The Democrats, really, in this state have no message.”

Democrats certainly disagree with Devaney on the message issue, but Republican Party dominance at the polls speaks for itself. Bob Corker handily won re-election to the U.S. Senate, the GOP continues to hold seven of nine Congressional seats and in the statehouse have secured walkout proof majorities in both chambers.

Devaney said he did encounter one unpleasant surprise on Election Night. Mitt Romney may have won Tennessee by 20 percentage points, but nationally his Republican message didn’t resonate like it did here.

“I thought Romney would win and that we might pick up a couple of more seats in the House,” he said.

It’s likely that Devaney will be around for at least another two years. He is running for a third term as Tennessee Republican Party chairman. The party’s executive committee will make its decision at a Dec. 1 meeting, and party officials say they are not aware of any challenges to Devaney’s re-election.

That means that those who want to run under the Republican banner will continue to face a strict litmus test.

“We’ve got to make sure… that we have people who are sticking by the core principles,” Devaney said. “One thing I ask people when they walk in here is, ‘Are you for a state income tax?’”

If they are, Deveaney said, they won’t get a dime of state GOP campaign money.

“Second amendment, same thing, pro-life, same thing,” he said.

Trent Seibert can be reached at, on Twitter at @trentseibert or at 615-669-9501.

One reply on “Devaney: TNGOP a ‘Shining Light’ to Nation”

Actually, the TN GOP has nothing to do with anything of conservative, founding principles happening in Tennessee. Liberty loving people in Tennessee turned out to vote for Mitt, and other Republican candidates, because the alternative was, and is, a total disaster and a threat to the Republic.

If the GOP as a whole had really wanted to have won the presidency, it would have backed the one candidate who could have won, Herman Cain. The people of Tennessee wanted Herman Cain and he would have won the state easily. If you remember, Mitt Romney did not win the Tennessee primary, Santorum did because, after the establishment GOP drove Herman Cain out, he was the closest thing we had left to a Constitutional Conservative.

The statist TN GOP leadership, statist Governor Haslam, and two statist US Senators, Alexander and Corker, and others like them are part of the problem, not part of the solution. The sooner the progressive, establishment GOP understands that, the better chance they have of remaining in power.

It is time for real men and real women in the GOP to take a stand and return to our founding principles, otherwise, it will the the GOP to blame for the loss of
freedom and liberty in America. The leadership has the power to stop this rush toward Socialism, but it does not, or apparently does not, have the collective backbone to do the honorable thing.

For the record, it is quite disgusting and shameful the way the GOP has come out and trashed Mitt Romney for his absolutely correct ‘gifts’ comment. The very same people who pushed Romney on us, saying he was the only candidate who could beat Obama, are now bashing him when he has the nerve to tell the truth. Conservatives told the GOP hacks all along that Romney would be the one candidate with the least chance to win, but they pushed him anyway. Now that they were proven incompetent, and conservatives proven correct in their assessment, they have the nerve to trash the man. That disgusting behavior is but one of the many reasons people of honor and integrity are leaving the GOP in droves.

Mitt Romney seems to be a decent man and would have made a fine president. He deserves respect from the GOP leadership, not thrown under the bus. It would behoove the GOP to listen to what Mitt is saying about, as Rush put it, the party of Santa Claus, because his comment about gifts was spot on.

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