Press Releases

Carr Campaign Touts Five More Endorsements from State Legislators

Press release from the campaign for Joe Carr for U.S. Senate; July 2, 2014:

NASHVILLE, TN – The Joe Carr for Senate campaign today announced the endorsements of Tennessee State Senators Jim Summerville (R-Dickson) and Stacey Campfield (R-Knoxville) and State Representatives Richard Floyd (R-Chattanooga), David Alexander (R-Winchester), and Kelly Keisling (R-Byrdstown).

“Lamar Alexander has chosen to support an amnesty agenda driven by Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and LaRaza at the expense of Tennessee’s working families,” stated Rep. David Alexander on behalf of the group of Legislators. “Look at the growing crisis on our southern border today, and we know exactly where that agenda has gotten us. We need a strong conservative like Joe Carr to go to Washington to do what he has done in the Tennessee State House – fight to enforce the rule of law.”

“I have always believed that this is a campaign that will be won or lost at the grassroots level and to have this kind of support from so many of my colleagues in the State Legislature tells me that something special is happening on the ground here in Tennessee,” said Carr. “Lamar Alexander thinks he can hide from his record, refuse to debate, and that somehow the people here in Tennessee won’t hold him accountable for choosing 11 million illegal immigrants over them – he’s setting himself up for a Dave Brat-like surprise.”

  • Senator Summerville represents the 25th Senatorial District covering Cheatham, Dickson, Hickman, Humphreys and Robertson Counties.
  • Senator Campfield represents the 7th Senatorial District covering part of Knox County.
  • Representative Floyd represents the 27th House District covering part of Hamilton County.
  • Representative Alexander represents the 39th House District covering Franklin, Moore and Marion Counties.
  • Representative Keisling represents the 38th House District covering Clay County and part of Fentress, Macon, Pickett and Scott Counties.

They join a growing list of TN state legislators who are backing Carr’s bid for Senate. In recent weeks, the campaign has announced the endorsement of:

  1. Senator Hensley (R-Hohenwald)
  2. Senator Niceley (R-Strawberry Plains)
  3. Rep. Hill (R-Jonesborough)
  4. Rep. Holt (R-Dresden)
  5. Rep. Sanderson (R-Kenton)
  6. Rep. Shipley (R-Kingsport)
  7. Rep. Van Huss (R- Jonesborough)
  8. Rep. Wirgau (R-Buchanan), Butt (R-Columbia)
  9. Rep. Matheny (R-Tullahoma)
  10. Rep. Pody (R-Lebanon)
  11. Rep. Rogers (R-Goodlettsville)
  12. Rep. Sparks (R-Smyrna)
  13. Rep. Spivey (R-Lewisburg)
  14. Rep. Womick (R-Rockvale)
Press Releases

Carr Invokes Rand Paul in Debate Challenge to Lamar

Press release from the campaign for Joe Carr for U.S. Senate; June 30, 2014:

Nashville, TN – Just as then candidate-Rand Paul fought for debates against the establishment candidate in his 2010 primary, Tennessee State Rep. and U.S. Senate candidate Joe Carr today challenged Senator Lamar Alexander to a series of debates.

“I challenge Lamar Alexander to debate before any impartial group,” said Carr. ”As Tennessee’s senior Senator, Lamar Alexander has voted to support amnesty, confirm President Obama’s hand-picked choice to implement ObamaCare and joined the President on his ‘War on Coal.’ Tennesseans deserve a full and robust debate so they can make the most informed decision on who truly represents their best interests.”

Sen. Alexander today is participating in an event with Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, who as a candidate in 2010, spoke out on the importance of debates saying “voters deserve a more serious discussion about the future of our country.”

“As a candidate for Senate, Rand Paul’s establishment opponent ducked, dodged and avoided debates – since they are together today, I wonder if Senator Paul still believes in the value and importance of debates and if he thinks that Lamar Alexander should commit to a series of debates throughout Tennessee,” added Carr.

Press Releases

Carr Claims Credit for Alexander’s Reversal on Sebelius Resignation

Press release from the Joe Carr Campaign for U.S. Senate; October 29, 2013:

Under fire from Conservative Joe Carr, Lamar flip-flops on Sebelius

Nashville, TN –Just one day after Conservative Senate candidate Joe Carr criticized Senator Alexander for his refusal to call for Secretary Sebelius’s dismissal, Senator Alexander dramatically reversed his position.

“I’m glad that Senator Alexander has reversed his position and now admits I was right. But its unfortunate he only did the right thing after political pressure. Unlike Senator Alexander, I’ll fight for our conservatives principles from day one.”

Last week, Senator Alexander gave an interview to Fox News in which he was asked if Sebelius should be fired. Alexander responded: “Well, that’s up to the President. I think he should make that decision.”

On Monday, Carr released the following statement:

“ObamaCare is a disaster and the implementation is even worse. It’s time for Kathleen Sebelius to be held accountable for the debacle she helped create. Senator Alexander’s refusal to call for her ouster is further proof he is well to the left of the conservative mainstream,” said Carr.

Today, Lamar reversed his position.

Press Releases

Knoxville-Area Democrat Files for U.S. Senate Race

Press release from the Campaign for Terry Adams for U.S. Senate; October 28, 2013:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Terry Adams, a Navy veteran, entrepreneur and attorney, announced today that he has filed to run as a Democrat for the U.S. Senate in 2014.

“After getting strong encouragement from a wide range of people around Tennessee, I have decided to enter this race,” Adams said. “We think the time is right for someone with a unique profile to run and win this seat and to serve Tennessee.”

Adams continued, “Washington is broken and we are not going to fix it by sending back the same people responsible for breaking it in the first place.”

Adams noted that if we had more small business owners and military veterans in Washington that common sense might prevail over out-of-control gridlock and brinksmanship.

“We have fewer veterans serving than in recent memory and I think that’s one of the reasons Washington is so painfully partisan and amazingly ineffective.”

With Republicans Lamar Alexander and Joe Carr battling for the nomination, Adams also noted that the Tea Party candidate had defeated an establishment Republican in at least eight recent Republican primaries for U.S. Senate: in Utah (Senator Lee), Colorado, Delaware, Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky (Senator Paul), Nevada, and Texas (Senator Cruz). Five out of the eight candidates then lost general elections.

Adams has roots in East, West and Middle Tennessee. He and his wife Phillis have two businesses in the Knoxville area where they live. Adams was raised in Nashville and went to college at UT Knoxville and the University of Memphis.

Nashville attorney, former Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman, and former U.S. Senate Democratic Party nominee, Bob Tuke is the Treasurer of Adams’ campaign.

A formal campaign kickoff and statewide tour is being scheduled.

Click here to read Adams’ short biography online.

Press Releases

Carr Takes on Alexander over $3B Kentucky Dam Project

Press release from the Joe Carr Campaign for U.S. Senate; October 21, 2013:

Nashville, TN — Today, the Joe Carr for Senate campaign released it’s first television advertisement, drawing attention to Senator Alexander’s sell out of conservatives on spending cuts and defunding ObamaCare, as well as his effort to include a $3 billion pet project in the recent bill to re-open the government.

“Senator Alexander sold out conservatives while pushing a $3 billion pet project in a backroom deal. I would have voted against the Reid-Alexander compromise and never would have fought for a pet project. That’s a real difference between Senator Alexander and I that voters should know about,” said Conservative Republican candidate Joe Carr.

The ad will run statewide on Fox News and online during the coming week.

The ad can be viewed here.

The script:

Joe Carr to camera:

Washington’s broken and it’s getting worse.

For weeks, conservatives fought the good fight to cut spending and defund ObamaCare.

Lamar Alexander however, was behind closed doors trading favors

Amid the chaos, Lamar snuck in three billion dollars for a dam . . . like this one.

Three billion for a dam? No darn way.

I’m Joe Carr. I approve this message because I want to return our country to the constitutional principles that made it great.

Join me at

Representative Joe Carr is an announced candidate running against Sen. Lamar Alexander in the 2014 Republican Primary. He is a principled conservative who believes that Washington needs to return to our founding core principles of personal responsibility, individual liberty, and free and fair markets.

Press Releases

Carr Criticizes Alexander’s Role in Nearly $3B Earmark to KY Dam Project

Press release from the Campaign for Joe Carr for U.S. Senate; October 17, 2013:

Nashville, TN — Citing reports that Lamar Alexander inserted a $2.9 billion earmark for a Kentucky dam project into the bill that ended the government shutdown and raised the debt ceiling, Conservative Republican Senate candidate Joe Carr released the following statement regarding Senator Alexander’s work to include the “Kentucky Kickback” in the final spending deal.

“Senator Alexander’s backroom deal is exactly what is wrong with Washington DC. While conservatives were fighting to reduce spending and stop ObamaCare, Senator Alexander was busy negotiating for an ‘earmark.’ This is a totally unacceptable.”

“John McCain called Senator Alexander’s backroom deal ‘disgusting’. Harry Reid defended it. That should tell Tennessee voters everything they need to know about Senator Alexander’s actions.”

From Bloomberg (10/17/13): Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, the top Republican on the appropriations subcommittee that handles spending on water projects, said in a statement last night that he and the panel’s chairman, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, requested the provision.

From the Daily Beast (10/16/13): McCain trashed the provision to The Daily Beast: “These people are like alcoholics. They can’t resist taking a drink. It’s ridiculous. It’s absolutely ridiculous. It should have gone through the normal legislative process. Its their legislative reputation even more and makes it even more difficult for me to vote for the overall bill—which I will. It shows that there are people in this body who are willing to use any occasion to get an outrageous pork-barrel project done at the cost of millions and millions of dollars. It’s disgusting.”

From the Huffington Post (10/16/13): Reid said there’s nothing shady about the “so-called anomaly” tucked into the bill.

NewsTracker Transparency and Elections

Carr Lags Behind Alexander in Fundraising

The clip at which Rutherford County state Rep. Joe Carr is raising money to try and unseat incumbent U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander in the Tennessee GOP primary next year doesn’t appear to be fast and furious.

Carr told conservative radio host Ralph Bristol his campaign didn’t do nearly as well as incumbent Alexander, who reported raising nearly $1 million in the same three-month period.

“I don’t have an exact figure, but it was a little less than $100,000, I believe,” said Carr, who shifted his campaign from the 4th District House nomination to the U.S. Senate in August.

In fact, Carr’s report this week to the Federal Election Commission indicates he only raised $52,000 in the third quarter. He also posted $285,000 cash on hand, which is an increase from the second quarter.

The Carr campaign justified the low numbers by saying he was more focused on endorsements than fundraising.

“Winning the support of Tennessee grassroots conservatives was our focus these past months – and we hit it out of the park, earning the endorsement of both the Beat Lamar organization and the Coalition for a Constitutional Senate, an informal coalition of 63 Tea Party and Liberty groups. Now were are going to build on that grassroots foundation and turn our focus to fundraising – I’m confident we will have a stellar 4th quarter,” Hillary Pate, Carr’s communications director said Wednesday afternoon.

Alexander reported raising $838,000 in the last three months making his year-to-date fundraising $3.9 million. The incumbent has $2.8 million on hand.

Campaign Fundraising from the House

Jim Tracy is winning the fund-raising race more than a year before he faces incumbent Rep. Scott DesJarlais in the 2014 primary for the GOP nomination for the 4th District in the U.S. House.

Tracy said the numbers prove he has the momentum in the race and enjoys broad support throughout the district that stretches from Rutherford County from Middle to East Tennessee.

“We have great support from inside the district,” Tracy said.

Tracy has taken donations from more than 1,200 individual donors with most coming from inside the contested district. DesJarlais, on the other hand, has taken cash from more out-of-state donors.

In the third quarter Tracy raised $181,721.79. During the three-month period, which ended Sept. 30, DesJarlais, raised $113,249. A state senator from Shelbyville, Tracy has collected $921,649.79 in this election cycle, compared to DesJarlais, who has $273,729.25.

Overall Tracy boasts a four-to-one lead in campaign funds with more than $750,000 on hand. DesJarlais is only holding on to about $170,000.

The only other incumbent with a seemingly viable opponent, Jimmy Duncan, R-Knoxville, raised $67,000 in the third quarter. He has raised $133,205.65 this election cycle and has $1.55 million on in the bank.

His primary challenger, Jason Zachary, reported raising $17,607.43 in the third quarter. He has raised $52,331.36 since announcing his candidacy in September. He has $20,364 in his campaign war chest.

Her are FEC tallies from Tennessee’s other U.S. House incumbents:

  • Phil Roe, R-1st District, raised $144,225 in the third quarter, $253,454 year-to-date and has $446,399.39 on hand
  • Chuck Fleischmann, R-3rd District, raised $95,880, $410,032 year-to-date with $250,222.41 on hand
  • Jim Cooper, D-5th District, raised $56,625, $344,051 year-to-date and has $910,762.31 in the bank
  • Diane Black, R-6th District, raised $127,621.61, year-to-date $552,362.45 and has $699,231.14 in the bank
  • Marsha Blackburn, R-7th District, raised $368,874.74 in the last quarter, $882,022.45 this year and holds $1.67 million in the bank
  • Stephen Fincher, R-8th District, raised $184,441.80 in the third quarter, $825,227.45 for the year and has $2.1 million in his campaign war chest
  • Steve Cohen, R-9th District, raised $59,125 for the quarter, $151,045 for the year and has $837,433.47 on hand.
Press Releases

BEAT LAMAR Announces 5 of 10 Regional Coordinators for New 10-10-10 Plan

Press release from the BEAT LAMAR campaign; October 14, 2013:

Spring Hill, TN—BEAT LAMAR has hired five of the ten Regional Coordinators that will lead the group’s 10-10-10 conservative ground game plan to get-out-the-vote for Joe Carr’s victory over Lamar Alexander in the August 2014 Republican Senate primary.

“Herman Cain had his 9-9-9 plan. BEAT LAMAR has our 10-10-10 plan,” said Michael Patrick Leahy, co-founder of BEAT LAMAR.

“750,000 votes will be cast in the August 2014 Republican primary,” Leahy explained. “Our 10-10-10 plan will get the 375,001 votes Joe Carr needs to beat Lamar Alexander with 10 BEAT LAMAR Regional Coordinators on our paid staff, each of whom will work with 10 BEAT LAMAR Volunteer Leaders in their region. These Volunteer Leaders, in turn will work with at least 10 BEAT LAMAR Volunteer door-to-door canvassers in their local community.”

“With 1,000 BEAT LAMAR Volunteer door-to-door canvassers across the state of Tennessee, each responsible for bringing 375 voters in their voting district to the polls for Joe Carr on primary day in August 2014, we’ll get those 375,001 votes needed to beat Lamar Alexander,” Leahy added.

Leahy announced the names of the five BEAT LAMAR Regional Coordinators:

“Kelly Turberville, who travelled to Ohio in 2012 to knock on doors for Mitt Romney, will be our Northern Middle Tennessee Regional Coordinator. Kelly’s husband has been in the Army for 28 years and is currently serving in Afghanistan. Kelly is based on Clarksville.

“Michele Waddell, who worked getting-out-the-vote for the 2012 Romney campaign in Florida, will be our Chattanooga Regional Coordinator. Michele is a graduate of Belmont and Liberty University Law School.

“Tina Ferguson, who was a leader in the 2012 Volunteers for Virginia project that helped get-out-the vote for Romney in the Commonwealth of Virginia, will be our Southern Middle Tennessee Regional Coordinator. Tina is based in Williamson County.

“Bethany Littleford, a volunteer leader in the 2012 Rick Santorum campaign, will be our East Tennessee Regional Coordinator. Bethany is based in Johnson City.

“Lucas Hutchinson, a student at the University of Tennessee at Martin and experienced BEAT LAMAR door-to-door canvasser, will be our North West Tennessee Regional Coordinator.”

At 9 am on Saturday October 19 these Regional Coordinators, along with five additional Regional Coordinators in Knoxville, Cookeville, Memphis, Jackson, and South West Tennessee whose names will be announced later this week, will host meetings in ten locations around the state to launch the first BEAT LAMAR & VOTE FOR JOE CARR Volunteer Day.

BEAT LAMAR is a project of the Real Conservatives National Committee, an independent expenditure Super PAC located in Spring Hill, Tennessee, that focuses on the development of a conservative ground game infrastructure. Michael Patrick Leahy and Lorie Medina are its co-founders.

Press Releases

Coggin Looks to Replace Carr in State House

Press release from the Campaign for Adam Coggin for State House; August 29, 2013:

Murfreesboro, TN -– AUGUST 29, 2013 — Rutherford County Commissioner Adam Coggin announced the leadership team for his campaign to become the next state representative from the 48th district. The seat is being vacated by Representative Joe Carr, who recently announced his candidacy for United States Senate. The 48th District includes the eastern portion of Rutherford County including Lascassas, Walter Hill, MTSU and East Murfreesboro. Coggin will be a candidate in the Republican primary to be held on August 7, 2014.

Coggin’s leadership team is comprised of: Rita Ash, Trustee Teb Batey, County Commissioner Jack Black, Mayor Ernest Burgess, Murfreesboro City Councilman Toby Gilley, Ted Goodman, County Commissioner Joe Frank Jernigan, Bill Jones, Senator Bill Ketron, Craig Lynch, County Commissioner Allen McAdoo, Hubert McCullough, Murfreesboro City Councilman Shane McFarland, Dr. Warren McPherson, Celeste Middleton, Bricke Murfree, County Commissioner Jeff Phillips, Shane Reeves, Dr. Nate Schott, County Commissioner Chantho Sourinho, Representative Mike Sparks, Senator Jim Tracy, Mike Vaught, Representative Dawn White, and Murfreesboro City Councilman Doug Young.

“I am grateful for everyone who has joined my leadership team and I am honored to have their support. These friends are business and community leaders in Rutherford County, and I know their advice and counsel will help me effectively communicate our campaign’s message and serve the residents of the 48th district,” Coggin added.

“Holly and I are humbled by all the encouragement and support we’ve received from our friends, family and neighbors from the 48th district. It has been overwhelming; we’re very blessed,” Coggin said.

Coggin serves as director of AdamsPlace Independent Living in Murfreesboro, and he previously served as director of development at Middle Tennessee Christian School. He graduated from Middle Tennessee Christian School, and earned his bachelor’s degree from Lipscomb University.

He is currently a member and previous board member of the Murfreesboro Noon Rotary Club, serves on the Read to Succeed board, the Project Help Advisory Council, and is a previous board member of the Rutherford County Family YMCA.

Coggin and his wife Holly have two children, Slater and McCall, and they are active members of North Boulevard Church of Christ.

Press Releases

Carr: Alexander’s Record ‘More Liberal’ Than Cooper’s

Press release from the Joe Carr Campaign for U.S. Senate; August 26, 2013:

Murfreesboro, TN—Rep. Joe Carr criticized Senator Lamar Alexander’s liberal voting record today. Alexander, responding to a question from Knoxville’s WBIR, said “I hope Tennesseans will look at me and the score card…”

“I hope Tennesseans take Senator Alexander up on that offer and examine his scorecard,” Carr responded. “They won’t like what they find. The scorecard reflects what we’ve been saying: Alexander is ranked the third most liberal of Tennessee’s eleven member delegation, with an unacceptable 41% conservative voting record.”

“Democratic Congressman Jim Cooper scored higher than Alexander. That’s very troubling to conservatives, and they realize it’s time to make a change in leadership. You also have to consider that the average Senate Republican has a 67% conservative voting record. I don’t think Tennesseans are going to let Senator Alexander get away with calling himself a conservative when he is that far below average,” predicted Carr.

According to Heritage Action for America, Alexander earned a dismal 41% conservative score based on his voting record, falling below Democratic Congressman Jim Cooper from the 5th Congressional District.

Congressional scorecards from conservative organizations Club for Growth and Madison Project demonstrate a similar liberal voting pattern.

“Senator Alexander has missed several opportunities to lead as a conservative. Instead he’s sided with liberals time and time again. Whether failing to stand with Senators Ted Cruz and Mike Lee on defunding Obamacare, voting to give amnesty to 11 million illegal immigrants or voting with President Obama 62% of the time—Lamar has lost touch,” Carr said.

Rep. Carr, a 1981 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University, is a business consultant who helps companies become more energy efficient. Additionally, he and his wife Ginny own and operate Cedar Snag Farms in Lascassas.
He was elected to the Tennessee General Assembly in 2008 and currently serves as Chairman of the Local Government subcommittee. He is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association, a member of the National Federation of Independent Business, Tennessee Right to Life, Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce and the MTSU Blue Raider Athletic Association. He is also an accomplished private pilot and member of the Aircraft Owners & Pilot Association.

Rep. Carr and Ginny, married for 30 years, have three children: Erin, Joe Jr., and Maddie. Ginny and Joe also have a grandson, Colby. Carr has lived in Rutherford County since he was a young boy and his family roots go back five generations in Rutherford County. Joe, Ginny and Joe Jr. are members of Believers Chapel in Murfreesboro.