Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester calls Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey’s criticism of U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander’s decision to vote in favor of the president’s Supreme Court nomination a bad move for a gubernatorial candidate.

“The lieutenant governor is obviously pandering to his extreme far right base, which may be foolish in the long run,” Forrester said. “But it’s typical behavior for someone who is more interested in dividing people than in trying to get them to work together to move the state forward.

“Ramsey and other like-minded Republicans in the General Assembly were more interested in passing wacky bills and debating wedge issues this past legislative session. We have families who are struggling to make ends meet. Why not focus on real issues like how to get people back to work, how to get more children into college and how to make health care affordable for more Tennesseans?”

Tennessee’s other U.S. senator, Bob Corker, has reportedly said he will vote against Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s confirmation to the Supreme Court.

Fabian Bedne, the president of the Middle Tennessee Hispanic Democrats, said he appreciates Alexander’s desire to move the state and the nation forward.

“The Hispanic community will remember the lieutenant governor’s stance on the Sotomayor nomination in the upcoming gubernatorial election here in Tennessee,” said Fabian Bedne, president of the Middle Tennessee Hispanic Democrats. “And we thank Sen. Alexander for being a statesman instead of being a partisan demagogue. It’s important that we as a state promote tolerance and diversity in our communities and find a common ground to help all of Tennessee’s citizens.”

“Sen. Alexander,” Forrester added, “shows he truly understands the need to unite our country and state so we can focus on real problems that face us.

“I just wish Republicans like Ramsey, Corker, Rep. Stacey Campfield, Congressman Marsha Blackburn and congressional candidate Robin Smith would focus their energy on solving problems, not trying to divide people with dishonest rhetoric and shameful scare tactics.”



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