Monday, April 03, 2006

The Ford Campaign Rolls Through Southern Middle Tennessee

This past weekend was the world wide renowned Mule Day celebration in Columbia, Tennessee.

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to attend Mule Day and to spend the day with my good friend Congressman Ford as he made a swing through southern middle Tennessee.

I arrived at Mule Day on Saturday morning sometime around 6:00 a.m. at the senior citizens building for a ham and biscuit breakfast that Congressman Ford and his traveling partner Congressman Lincoln Davis were to attend.

Congressman Davis had traveled with Ford the day before and would be with him throughout the day on Saturday at Mule Day and later at Lewis County.

My good friend Congressman Ford and Congressman Davis arrived at the breakfast around 7:15. As the breakfast room began to fill up with Mule Day-goers, Congressman Ford made his way around the room introducing himself and talking the issues of the day with the attendees.

After Congressman Ford and Congressman Davis left that breakfast, they headed over to a pancake breakfast at the Memorial Building in Columbia.

As the two Congressmen made their appearance at that breakfast, I headed on over to the Farm Bureau building, where they would be in just a short little while.

When I arrived at the Farm Bureau gathering, I found out that all of Congressman Ford's opponents where in the house. Ed Bryant, Van Hilleary, Bob Corker, and Rosalind Kurita were all inside greeting people.
As I waited outside, Van Hilleary and Bob Corker each came over and spoke to me very briefly.

I was not impressed by either, however, Van Hilleary really did not impress me. He seemed so unprofessional to me by the way he presented himself.

Both Hilleary and Corker wore lavish clothing to Mule Day. Hilleary had on loafers, a sport coat, and slacks while Corker wore a button up shirt and slacks. That is compared to Congressman Ford who wore a Ford for U.S. Senate shirt, blue jeans, a camouflage hat, and boots.

The Congressman did a great job working the crowd at the Farm Bureau event.

He went from person to person introducing himself and putting smiles on people's faces. Unlike the other candidates in attendance, people young and old rushed to shake hands or have their picture made with Ford. He really is like a celebrity every where he goes.

Also in attendance at this event were our Govenror Phil Bredesen and rumored GOP opponent Jim Bryson.

Next on the campaign trail after the Farm Bureau event was a stop at the old F&M in Columbia.

When the Congressman arrived there, he was once again swarmed by adoring supporters as he made his way throughout the crowd.

After taking a some photos from that stop, I made my way over to Congressman Davis's field office where all of the Ford supporters were meeting to get ready to walk in the parade.

As soon as I got there I saw all of my good friends from the campaign as well as my friends from Lawrence County who made it up to take part in the parade.

It really was a great sight seeing so many people there in support of the Congressman.

While the other candidates there may have had a handful of supporters in attendance, Congressman Ford's support group blew them out of the water.

The parade really began to move around 11:30. As it picked up steam, Congressman Ford had a hard time staying up as all of his onlooking supporters wanted to shake his hand and talk to him. It really was a great sign of support.

As the parade pressed on through downtown Columbia, our group was greeted a handful of times of cheering supporters. Once again, the grassroots support from the crowd was evident.

When the parade came to an end, I made my way back to my vehicle and managed to catch back up with the campaign, who was not at Marvin Sandrell's beautiful home in Columbia. The food and refreshments there were great.

After the Congressman greeted supporters and grabbed something to eat, it was on to a meet and greet in Hohenwald, which is located in Lewis County.

We arrived in Hohenwald around 3:15 to a enthusiastic crowd of about 100 people including several of my friends from Lawrence County. All of them were anxious to meet Congressman Ford and hear him speak.

Following several minutes of pressing hands with supporters, it was time for Congressman Davis and Congressman Ford to speak.
Congressman Davis was first to speak as he talked about the importance of this U.S. Senate race in Tennessee. Davis then introduced Congressman Ford to the eager crowd.

Congressman Ford spoke on a wide range of issues including our nation's oil dependence, balancing the budget, and education. While the Congressman was speaking, I could see everyone in the crowd nodding in approval of what he was saying. He can command a crowd like no other politican I have ever saw.

Ford spoke for about a half and hour and the crowd was alert the whole time. At the conclusion of his speech, Ford was met with cheers and a loud round of applause.

For the next 10-20 minutes, the Congressman once again shook hands and spoke to supporters.

Just before 4:00, the Congressman and the campaign said their goodbyes and headed for Ashland City.

Overall, Saturday was a great day for the Ford campaign.

Maury and Lewis county are typically Republican counties. However, judging by the response Congressman Ford got in both this past weekend, I really do feel that they too are ready for a change!

After this weekend, I have no doubt that the Ford campaign is on the right direction and has the momentum in this race!

89 Days

Days of Congressional Inaction on Ethics

Above is the number of days that have passed since Jack Abramoff pleaded guilty to bribing Congressman.

It is also the number of days in which Congress has failed to pass an ethics reform bill that would limit private travel, ski and golf junkets, and would call for a full disclosure of expenses by lobbyists on members of Congress.

It is time for Congress to step up and pass an ethics reform bill that would do all of the above. In addition, it is time to end the pork barrel spending system as we know it and establish an independent ethics commission that would review ethics complaints against members of Congress.

I am proud Congressman Harold Ford Jr. is fighting for that reform!

Read Congressman Ford's call for reform of the House rules here!