- 30 Oct 06, 09:16 PM
Reading some of the warnings of impending Republican meltdown next week - coming from both sides I hasten to add - you’d think the party’s core supporters had vanished off the face of the earth.
Well, if rural Tennessee is anything to go by, they haven’t - and contrary to Karl Rove’s greatest fears, many of them will be turning out to vote. People like Janice Bowling, who has stood as a Republican candidate in the past and was busy persuading people to support the Republican candidate for the Senate at a big barbeque competition in Lynchburg.
As far as she, and many others I met there are concerned, the Republican party still stands for what they believe in: low taxes, no gay marriage, no abortion and above all belief in God.
As for the war in Iraq, they’re certainly not happy about it, but they don’t blame the Republicans. As one woman told me, it might not be going well, “but that’s to be expected.”
And the scandals amongst Republicans in Congress? It just doesn’t seem to be an issue. In the smaller towns and the countryside, Republicans are more concerned with the character and experience of the local candidates.
Democrats, undecideds and some moderate Republicans may see this election as a verdict on the national leadership of the past five-and-a-half years, but the committed Republicans I met in rural Tennessee do not.
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