United States Senate elections in Tennessee, 2014

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U.S. Senate, Tennessee General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngLamar Alexander Incumbent 61.9% 849,629
     Democratic Gordon Ball 31.8% 437,251
     Independent Ed Gauthier 0.2% 2,311
     Independent Bartholomew Phillips 0.2% 2,380
     Independent C. Salekin 0.1% 784
     Independent Danny Page 0.6% 7,710
     Independent Eric Schechter 0.1% 1,668
     Constitution Joe Wilmoth 2.6% 36,063
     Independent Joshua James 0.4% 5,672
     Independent Rick Tyler 0.4% 5,753
     Tea Party Tom Emerson, Jr. 0.8% 11,149
     Green Martin Pleasant 0.9% 12,536
Total Votes 1,372,906
Source: Tennessee Secretary of State Vote totals above are unofficial and will be updated once official totals are made available.



CongressLogo.png

2014 U.S. Senate Elections in Tennessee

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
August 7, 2014

November 4 Election Winner:
Lamar Alexander Republican Party
Incumbent prior to election:
Lamar Alexander Republican Party
Lamar Alexander.jpg

Race Ratings
Cook Political Report: Solid Republican[1]

Sabato's Crystal Ball: Safe R[2]


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2014 U.S. House Elections

Flag of Tennessee.png
Voters in Tennessee elected one member to the U.S. Senate in the election on November 4, 2014.

Incumbent Lamar Alexander defeated Gordon Ball, independent candidates Ed Gauthier, Bartholomew Phillips, C. Salekin, Danny Page, Eric Schechter, Joshua James and Rick Tyler, Tea Party candidate Tom Emerson, Jr., Constitution Party candidate Joe Wilmoth and Green Party candidate Martin Pleasant in the general election.

Candidate Filing Deadline Primary Election General Election
April 3, 2014
August 7, 2014
November 4, 2014

Primary: Tennessee is one of 14 states that uses an open primary system, in which registered voters do not have to be members of a party to vote in that party's primary.[3][4][5]

Voter registration: To vote in the primary, voters had to register by July 8, 2014. For the general election, the voter registration deadline was October 6, 2014.[6]

See also: Tennessee elections, 2014

Incumbent: The election filled the Senate seat held by Lamar Alexander (R). Alexander was first elected in 2002.

Candidates

General election candidates


August 7, 2014, primary results

Republican Party Republican Primary

Democratic Party Democratic Primary

Withdrew from race

Removed from ballot

Election results

General election

U.S. Senate, Tennessee General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngLamar Alexander Incumbent 61.9% 849,629
     Democratic Gordon Ball 31.8% 437,251
     Independent Ed Gauthier 0.2% 2,311
     Independent Bartholomew Phillips 0.2% 2,380
     Independent C. Salekin 0.1% 784
     Independent Danny Page 0.6% 7,710
     Independent Eric Schechter 0.1% 1,668
     Constitution Joe Wilmoth 2.6% 36,063
     Independent Joshua James 0.4% 5,672
     Independent Rick Tyler 0.4% 5,753
     Tea Party Tom Emerson, Jr. 0.8% 11,149
     Green Martin Pleasant 0.9% 12,536
Total Votes 1,372,906
Source: Tennessee Secretary of State Vote totals above are unofficial and will be updated once official totals are made available.

Republican primary

Despite state Rep. Joe Carr's high-profile endorsements from Sarah Palin and conservative talk-radio host Laura Ingraham, the tea party-backed candidate was unable to defeat incumbent Lamar Alexander, who defeated six challengers in the Republican primary.[10][12]

U.S. Senate, Tennessee Republican Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngLamar Alexander Incumbent 49.7% 330,088
Joe Carr 40.6% 269,169
George Flinn 5.2% 34,207
Christian Agnew 1.7% 11,203
John King 1.2% 7,876
Brenda Lenard 1.2% 7,697
Erin Magee 0.5% 3,412
Total Votes 663,652
Source: Results via Associated Press

Democratic primary

Gordon Ball defeated Larry Crim, Gary Davis and Terry Adams in the Democratic primary.[10]

U.S. Senate, Tennessee Democratic Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngGordon Ball 36.5% 87,665
Terry Adams 35.6% 85,528
Gary Davis 17.6% 42,278
Larry Crim 10.3% 24,778
Total Votes 240,249
Source: Results via Associated Press

Issues

Candidate forum

Alexander and Ball met at a candidate forum in Cookeville on October 16, which quickly turned hostile. Alexander tied Ball to Barack Obama, noting that Ball supports the Affordable Care Act. Citing Ball's recent plagiarism of policies on his website, Alexander said, Ball would be "one more cut-and-paste vote for the Obama agenda."[13]

Alexander also attacked Ball's profession. He said, "My opponent has a reputation as a very good lawyer in Knoxville. If you're a cocaine smuggler, and you're guilty, he's the one you'd want to hire to persuade the jury that you're not. I've made my money being a capitalist. He made his money suing capitalists."[13]

Ball then went on the attack saying, "If you want to change what's gone on under my opponent's watch in this country, you've got to change the people in Washington. ...If gridlock is Harry Reid, then why did my opponent vote for Obama and Reid 62 percent of the time?"[13]

Plagiariam

According to BuzzFeed.com, "Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful Gordon Ball appears to have plagiarized nearly every word on his issues pages from a vast array of politicians including West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan, and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren."[14]

In response to the accusation Ball said, "I had no idea that this material was cut and pasted on my website from other sources."[14]

Involvement in Syria

According to a report by The Hill in September 2013, Joe Carr was among four Republican senate candidates who had come out against intervening in Syria, while the incumbent, Lamar Alexander, remained undecided.[15]

Key votes

Below are important votes that Alexander cast during the 113th Congress.

Economy

Farm bill

Yea3.png On February 4, 2014, the Democratic controlled Senate approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[16] It passed the Senate with a vote of 68-32. The nearly 1,000-page bill reformed and continued various programs of the Department of Agriculture through 2018. The $1 trillion bill expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that will kick in when prices drop; however, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[17] Alexander joined with 19 other Republican senators in favor of the bill.

2014 Budget

Yea3.png On January 16, 2014, the Democratic-controlled Senate approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[18][19] The Senate voted 72-26 for the 1,582 page bill, with 17 Republicans and 55 Democrats voting in favor of the bill.[19] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[20] It included a 1 percent increase in the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel, a $1 billion increase in Head Start funding for early childhood education, reduced funding to the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency and left the Affordable Care Act without any drastic cuts. Alexander voted with the 17 Republican and the 55 Democratic members in favor of the bill.[18][19]

No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013

Nay3.png Alexander voted against H.R.325 -- No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013. The bill passed the Senate on January 31, 2013, with a vote of 64 - 34. The purpose of the bill was to temporarily suspend the debt ceiling and withhold the pay of members of Congress until a budget could be passed. The vote largely followed party lines with Democrats overwhelmingly supporting it and many Republicans in opposition to the bill.[21]

Government shutdown

See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Yea3.png During the shutdown in October 2013, the Senate rejected, down party lines, every House-originated bill that stripped the budget of funding for the Affordable Care Act. A deal was reached late on October 16, 2013, just hours before the debt ceiling deadline. The bill to reopen the government, H.R. 2775, lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[22] The final vote on H.R. 2775 was 81-18, with all 18 votes against the bill from Republican members. Alexander voted with the Democratic Party for the bill.[23]

Immigration

Mexico-U.S. border

Yea3.png Alexander voted for Senate Amendment 1197 -- Requires the Completion of the Fence Along the United States-Mexico Border. The amendment was rejected by the Senate on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 39 - 54. The purpose of the amendment was to require the completion of 350 miles of fence described in the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 before registered provisional immigrant status may be granted. It would also require 700 miles of fence be completed before the status of registered provisional immigrants may be changed to permanent resident status. The vote followed party lines.[24]

Endorsements

Lamar Alexander

Alexander was endorsed by the following people:

Joe Carr

Carr was endorsed by the following people and organizations:

  • Upon announcing his entry into the race, Carr gained the endorsement of Tea Party Nation. The group's founder, Judson Phillips, said, "A conservative challenger has emerged to take on Lamar Alexander. His name is Joe Carr. We enthusiastically endorse Joe Carr in the Tennessee Republican Senate Primary."[29]
  • Nashville area talk show hosts Ralph Bristol and Michael DelGiorno from radio station 99.7 WTN[30]
  • Anti-Lamar PAC[31]
  • Beat Lamar[31]
  • The Coalition for a Constitutional Senate[31]
  • Laura Ingraham, conservative talk-radio host[32]
  • Sarah Palin[33]
  • Eagle Forum PAC[34]

Polls

General Election
Poll Lamar Alexander Gordon BallOtherUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
YouGov
September 20 - October 1, 2014
53%32%2%12%+/-41,007
YouGov
August 18 - September 2, 2014
47%32%10%11%+/-41,056
Rasmussen Reports
August 11-12, 2014
47%32%10%12%+/-4750
AVERAGES 49% 32% 7.33% 11.67% +/-4 937.67
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org
Tennessee Republican primary
Poll Lamar Alexander Joe CarrGeorge FlinnOtherUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Red Racing Horses (July 28-30, 2014)
41%29%5%5%20%+/-5.0400
Triton Polling (July 10-11, 2014)
43%36%6.7%4%10.1%+/-2.91,099
AVERAGES 42% 32.5% 5.85% 4.5% 15.05% +/-3.95 749.5
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org
Tennessee Republican primary
Poll Lamar Alexander Joe CarrOtherUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
North Star Opinion Research (May 12-14, 2014)
56%14%8%22%+/-4600
North Star Opinion Research (February 3-6, 2014)
62%17%3%18%+/-4600
Public Policy Polling (December 2-3, 2013)
46%40%0%14%+/-5391
North Star Opinion Research (August 19-22, 2013)
64%22%0%14%+/-4600
AVERAGES 57% 23.25% 2.75% 17% +/-4.25 547.75
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Media

Lamar Alexander


Lamar Alexander's January 2014 ad, "Standing Up For Tennessee."

Lamar Alexander's October 2014 ad, "Vote For A New Senate Majority."

Lamar Alexander's October 2014 ad, "Gordon Ball: One More Vote for Obama."
  • In January 2014, Alexander ran his first campaign ad of 2014. The ad featured residents of Tennessee who discussed Alexander's conservative values.
  • In Alexander's ad, "Vote For A New Senate Majority," he said, "Obamacare’s a failure; border security’s a mess, terrorists run rampant and America’s drowning in debt. If that’s okay with you then vote for my opponent — he’ll be just one more vote for Barack Obama’s agenda. But America’s better than that. Your vote can mean a new Senate majority where I can work to fix our broken system and get the right things done."[35]
  • The narrator in "Gordon Ball: One More Vote for Obama," said, "Gordon Ball tells us he’d be independent. But he’d be just one more vote for Obama. He’s a liberal, pro-Obamacare, pro-choice, pro-gun control, slick talking personal injury lawyer. Clearly Gordon Ball would be just one more vote for Barack Obama’s agenda. Slick talk, one more vote for Obama, that’s the real Gordon Ball."[36]

Lamar Alexander's October 2014 ad, "Trust Me With Your Vote."

Lamar Alexander's October 2014 ad, "Together."
  • In Alexander's ad, "Trust Me With Your Vote," Alexander said, "These are serious times, and here’s the choice. A vote for my opponent is just one more vote for Barack Obama’s agenda. Trust me with your vote. It could mean a new Senate majority that will stand up to terrorism, secure our borders, and make it easier to find a job. And finally, we’ll begin to fix our broken system."[37]
  • In "Together," Alexander argued that he has seen what Tennesseans can do when they work together. He then said, "Trust me with your vote and I will put that kind of Tennessee common sense to work in a new majority in the United States Senate, and we can begin to fix our broken system and move our country in the right direction."[38]

CRES


CRES TV ad: "Maverick."
  • Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions released "Maverick" in support of Alexander. The ad argued that Alexander has helped keep America secure and will continue to do so.

Gordon Ball


Gordon Ball's June 2014 ad, "Why Gordon Ball is running for Senate."

Gordon Ball's July 2014 ad, "Working for Tennessee."

Gordon Ball's October 2014 ad, "Same Old Song and Dance."
  • The narrator in "Why Gordon Ball is running for Senate" said that Ball will "stand up for the working poor and middle class."
  • The narrator in "Working for Tennessee" agued that politicians in Washington are only fighting for their own jobs. In addition, the narrator said that Ball has promised to stand up for the middle class.
  • The narrator in "Same Old Song and Dance" argued that Alexander is "out of tune" with what Tennessee needs.

Joe Carr


Joe Carr's 2014 ad, "Crisis in America."

Joe Carr's 2014 ad, "Listens."
  • Joe Carr's ad, "Crisis in America," criticized Alexander for his stance on immigration.
  • Joe Carr's ad, "Listens," accused Alexander of working with Washington insiders, rather than for the people of Tennessee. The narrator said, "Lamar Alexander is listening to Washington, not Tennessee conservatives."

George Flinn


Flinn's 2014 ad, "U.S. Border Protection."

Flinn's 2014 ad, "Seal the Border."
  • Flinn's ad, "U.S. Border Protection," attacked Alexander's record on immigration. Flinn also promised to protect America's borders, if elected.
  • Flinn highlighted the problems associated with "career politicians" in his ad, "Seal the Border." He promised to bring "conservative solutions to problems."

Campaign contributions

Candidate ballot accecss
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Lamar Alexander

Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Alexander's reports.[39]

Lamar Alexander (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[40]April 15, 2013$1,010,758.68$1,011,187.37$(216,029.39)$1,805,916.66
July Quarterly[41]July 15, 2013$1,805,916.66$2,039,529.20$(723,012.28)$3,122,433.58
October Quarterly[42]October 15, 2013$3,122,433.58$842,131.03$(1,158,871.38)$2,805,693.23
Year-End[43]January 31, 2014$2,805,693$774,639$(402,356)$3,177,975
April Quarterly[44]April 15, 2014$3,177,975.95$643,440.80$(703,032.63)$3,118,384.17
July Quarterly[45]July 15, 2014$3,118,384.17$917,137.13$(623,840.59)$3,411,680.71
Running totals
$6,228,064.53$(3,827,142.27)

Joe Carr

Joe Carr (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[46]7/15/2013$0.00$205,479.00$(13,837.71)$191,641.29
July Quarterly[47]7/15/2013$191,641.29$100,225.00$(16,858.01)$275,008.28
October Quarterly[48]10/15/2013$275,008.28$52,276.98$(41,778.03)$285,507.23
Year-End[49]January 31, 2014$285,507$251,173$(131,530)$405,150
Running totals
$609,153.98$(204,003.75)

Danny Page

Danny Page (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
October Quarterly[50]November 7, 2013$0$0$(0)$0
Year-End[51]January 30, 2014$0$635$(584)$50
April Quarterly[52]April 2, 2014$50.21$681$(462.72)$292.82
Running totals
$1,316$(1,046.72)

Brenda Lenard

Brenda Lenard (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[53]April 11, 2013$4,250.32$3,106.68$(6,891.64)$465.36
July Quarterly[54]July 15, 2013$465.36$0.00$(0.00)$465.36
October Quarterly[55]October 15, 2013$465.36$1,047.18$(7,339.72)$3,582.82
Running totals
$4,153.86$(14,231.36)

Larry Crim

Larry Crim (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[56]April 11, 2013$2,633.22$0$(1,775.83)$857.39
July Quarterly[57]July 11, 2013$857.39$2,365.00$(3,029.00)$193.39
October Quarterly[58]October 13, 2013$193.39$30,045.00$(12,408.00)$17,830.39
Year-End[59]February 4, 2014$17,830$10,190$(9,185)$18,835
April Quarterly[60]April 12, 2014$18,835.39$11,816.00$(6,748.00)$23,903.39
Running totals
$54,416$(33,145.83)

Ed Gauthier

Ed Gauthier (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
Year-End[61]January 23, 2014$0$0$(318)$-318
April Quarterly[62]April 1, 2014$0$0$(-340.28)$-340.28
Running totals
$0$(-22.28)

Christian Agnew

Christian Agnew (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[63]April 8, 2014$0$200$(0)$200
Running totals
$200$(0)

Terry Adams

Terry Adams (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
Year-End[64]January 30, 2014$0.00$23,570.14$(3,117.39)$20,452.75
April Quarterly[65]April 14, 2014$20,556.71$42,128.00$(44,035.30)$18,649.41
Running totals
$65,698.14$(47,152.69)

Election history

2012

On November 6, 2012, Bob Corker won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Mark Clayton, Shaun Crowell, David Gatchell, James Higdon, Michel Long, Troy Scoggin, Kermit Steck and Martin Pleasant, in the general election.

U.S. Senate, Tennessee General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngBob Corker Incumbent 64.9% 1,506,443
     Democratic Mark E. Clayton 30.4% 705,882
     Constitution Kermit Steck 0.8% 18,620
     Green Martin Pleasant 1.7% 38,472
     Libertarian Shaun E. Crowell 0.9% 20,936
     Independent David Gatchell 0.3% 6,523
     Independent Michael Joseph Long 0.3% 8,085
     Independent Troy Stephen Scoggin 0.3% 8,080
Total Votes 2,320,189
Source: Tennessee Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"

2008

On November 4, 2008, Lamar Alexander won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Robert D. Tuke (R), Edward L. Buck (D), Christopher G. Fenner (I), Daniel Towers Lewis (I), Chris Lugo (I), Ed Lawhorn (I) and David Gatchell (I) in the general election.[66]

On November 4, 2008, Alexander won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Robert D. Tuke, Edward L. Buck, Christopher G. Fenner, Daniel Towers Lewis, Chris Lugo, Ed Lawhorn and David Gatchell in the general election.[67]

U.S. Senate, Tennessee General Election, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngLamar Alexander Incumbent 65.1% 1,579,477
     Democratic Robert D. Tuke 31.6% 767,236
     Independent Edward L. Buck 1.3% 31,631
     Independent Christopher G. Fenner 0.5% 11,073
     Independent Daniel Towers Lewis 0.4% 9,367
     Independent Chris Lugo 0.4% 9,170
     Independent Ed Lawhorn 0.4% 8,986
     Independent David Gatchell 0.3% 7,645
Total Votes 2,424,585

See also

External links

References

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  2. Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2014 Senate Races," accessed August 21, 2014
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  4. Fair Vote, "Congressional and Presidential Primaries: Open, Closed, Semi-Closed, and 'Top Two,'" accessed January 6, 2014
  5. Ballotpedia research conducted December 26, 2013, through January 3, 2014, researching and analyzing various state websites and codes.
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  15. Politico, "Senate primary challengers target GOP incumbents on Syria strikes," September 8, 2013
  16. Senate.gov, "H.R. 2642 (Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013)," accessed February 12, 2014
  17. New York Times, "Senate Passes Long-Stalled Farm Bill, With Clear Winners and Losers," accessed February 12, 2014
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  36. YouTube.com, "Gordon Ball: One More Vote for Obama," accessed October 20, 2014
  37. Youtube.com, "Trust Me With Your Vote," accessed October 20, 2014
  38. Youtube, ""Together" Television Advertisement," accessed October 30, 2014
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  63. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 24, 2014
  64. Federal Election Commission, "Year-End," accessed June 18, 2014
  65. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 24, 2014
  66. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
  67. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013