Tuesday, November 20, 2001



Posted By on Tue, Nov 20, 2001 at 4:00 AM

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Bredesen made his umpteenth recent appearance before a Memphis audience Monday night at the Folks Folly restaurant on Mendenhall. There were two main differences this time: The former Nashville mayor, who for some months was cultivating local soil with a series of meet-and-greets, was well into the fund-raising stage of his campaign this time ($1,000 and up was the amount “suggested” for attendees) and, perhaps more importantly, Republicans were every bit as prominent as Democrats at the Folks folly affair.

Tellingly, several of those present were prominent supporters of current Republican governor Don Sundquist in the last two elections. A case in point was co-host Jim McGhee, the developer and former Airport Authority chairman, who introduced Bredesen with remarks that included a lament that sitting congressmen _ he mentioned Sundquist and former Governor Ray Blanton -- had proved “a mistake” in the role of chief executives for the state.

(One edge of that blade swiped at the leading Republican candidate, 4th district congressman Van Hilleary.)

Another longtime local Republican, industrialist Jim Fri, said he distrusted Hilleary’s adamant stand against the income tax and, even though Bredesen has also shied away from espousing such a tax, said, “I trust Jim McGhee on this.”

A prominent former aide of Sundquist’s, AutoZone executive Ray Pohlmann, was also in attendance.

Of course, Democrats were on hand, too _ including Shelby County party chairman Gale Jones Carson, former chairman Sidney Chism, current county mayor candidate A C Wharton, and hotelier Pace Cooper.

But the emphasis was on the Republicans and independents present, a fact underscored by the candidate himself, who noted the political diversity of the room and referred to those present as a “cross section” of the Memphis community.

In a reference to last week’s flap concerning the fundraiser that Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams hosted for him at Adelphia Coliseum, Bredesen, quipped that he had discovered “maybe seven people” in the state who were upset about the financial package he helped prepare (along with Sundquist) to entice the NFL contender to Nashville. If the Titans matter became an issue, Bredesen said, “I’ll be all right.”


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

    • Mae Beavers for Governor?

      Yes, Flyer folk, you may have the General Assembly's Iron Maiden to deal with in 2018!
    • John DeBerry: An Outlier on Vouchers

      The Memphis state representative and supporter of the Kelsey bill foresees a close vote when push comes to shove.
    • Surprises Galore at Local GOP's Lincoln Day Dinner

      Strickland says he eschews local media; Keynoter Alberto Gonzales picks a bone or two with President Trump; and candidates turn up in droves.

Speaking of School Consolidation


Readers also liked…

Most Commented On

© 1996-2017

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation