Yesterday marked the first day of Congressman Ford's statewide bus tour. The following article from the Jackson Sun, details Congressman Ford's speech from yesterday's rally in Madison County:
Rep. Harold Ford Jr., D-Memphis, challenged his Republican senate opponent Bob Corker to a series of straight-up debates as he spoke this morning at a rally with more than 200 supporters.
"Let's drop the ads, the negative campaigning and all the press aides. Let's just go one-on-one and let people know where we stand on all the issues," Ford said at a 7:30 a.m. rally at Madison County Democratic Headquarters.
Playing to a partisan crowd, he added, "I'm not sure he wants to campaign on the Republican record the last five years."
Ford, accompanied by Rep. John Tanner, D-Union City, State Rep. Johnny Shaw, D-Bolivar, Mayor Charles Farmer, state senate candidate Lowe Finney and state house candidate Cheri Childress of Milan, was starting a 15-county bus tour to kick off the post-primary portion of his campaign.
The tour continues later this morning at Kappis Restaurant in Humboldt (11:30 a.m.), the Gibson County Co-op in Trenton (12:30 p.m.) and near the Goodyear Plant in Union City (2:30 p.m.).
Ford told supporters, "The Republicans won't talk about issues. They'll tell you I'm black, I'm liberal and I'm from Memphis ... two out of the three are true. I am black, and I am from Memphis."
Ford told the crowd it's time for a change in Washington and in Nashville, and that "government only works when it's working for everyone, not the richest of all."
The two men have already spent more than $10 million in their campaigns to replace Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, who is stepping down this term. Last Thursday night, as he claimed victory in the Democratic Primary, Ford raised $1 million at a Nashville rally attended by former President Bill Clinton.
Ford said that he wasn't espousing a total drop of advertising or media play. "You've got to have that, too."
But when asked what was the key between now and November, "was doing as many of these things as possible. This time of year you can't touch enough voters."