NASHVILLE - Republican U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais and his GOP primary rival Jim Tracy don't agree on much, but the the two 4th Congressional District candidates are both offering jabbing welcomes to Democratic President Barack Obama in advance of the president's Chattanooga visit on Tuesday.
Tracy, a state senator from Shelbville, released a video in which the lawmaker sits in a rocking chair and offers a folksy but barbed welcome to the president, saying "we conservatives in Tennessee just have to thank you. Your left wing polices have created such a backlash we now have control over the Tennessee General Assembly and our congressional delegation.
"And it's been good for the people of Tennessee," Tracy says. "You see, we do things differently down here. While you've been in Washington racking up our national debt of over $16 trillion dollars , here in Tennessee we have the lowest debt ratio in the nation. There's a lot you can learn from us."
DesJarlais' office issued a release in which the congressman says the president "could certainly learn a thing or two about creating jobs from Tennessee. Thanks to our state's low taxes, right-to-work policies and pro-jobs regulatory framework, Tennessee is leading the country in innovation and opportunity.
"Unfortunately," DesJarlais added, "President Obama's approach of bigger government, more spending and higher taxes has created a situation where the federal government is actually hurting economic growth across our state.
Both DesJarlais, Tracy and state Rep. Joe Carr, R-Lascassas, are duking it out in the GOP's 2014 primary.
Read more in Tuesday's Times Free Press.