Conservatives clash in District 17 race

Sunday, July 25, 2010 at 11:45pm

There’s a moment relished by professional wrestling fans, one that never fails to excite.

A villain returns to the ring, a good guy switches sides or the hero makes a triumphant comeback in time to save the day.

Mae Beavers, the state Senate’s conservative stalwart, announced she was abandoning her run for Wilson County mayor to instead focus on re-election to the Senate, meaning she’d be challenging fellow uber-conservative Rep. Susan Lynn — also of Wilson County — for the GOP nomination in the sprawling, nine-county 17th District.

Beavers’ move made very public what was long an open secret: Beavers and Lynn really, really, really don’t like each other. It’s a rivalry that dates back to at least 2004, when Beavers told party officials that Lynn was plotting to take over the Senate seat while Beavers battled breast cancer.

It was a charge, naturally, Lynn denied.

In the six years since then, charges have flown from both sides — whispers in the ears of reporters and Republicans — of one seemingly nefarious deed after another. Their feud was even responsible for the late-night final session of the General Assembly this year, which saw the pair’s competing versions of the Health Freedom Act — a protest measure against the health care reform law — bounced back and forth on Capitol Hill, as neither woman would give an inch.

Predictably, that acrimony rolled right into campaign season. Beavers’ ads accuse Lynn of torpedoing the Heath Freedom Act, of being soft on illegal immigration and — the horror! — of being friendly with Democrats. Lynn’s camp, of course, says the attacks are misleading. At a recent forum sponsored by the Lebanon Democrat, Lynn reminded the audience it takes 50 votes to get things done in the state House, a subtle jab at Beavers “Lynn-is-a-softie” attacks.

The fact is, policy-wise, there isn’t much space between the two. Neither would ever vote for an income tax, both received A-plus ratings from the National Rifle Association. And while the 17th isn’t as red as some analysts would have you believe, the winner of the Republican primary will likely win the Senate spot. And the loser will have an uphill battle to get back into professional politics.

9 Comments on this post:

By: rot on 7/26/10 at 8:23

Who would have ever thought it would have got to this. I have been here in Wilson County as long as Mae and a lot longer than Susan. I have followed Mae from her county commission day's, through her house day's when she beat Monty Mires and when no one believed that Bob Rochelle could be beat. That is a long way from Susan who takes credit for anything and was only elected by hanging on to Mae's coatail's. Regardless of the claim's made Mae and a few others were responsible for the demise of the state income tax. When all this took place Lynn wasn't even around. Also all the road project's that Lynn takes credit for was initated before Ms Lynn showed up in this county from New York. Mae also spondored the bill to reduce sales tax on food and wants to eleminate it in its entirety amongst many of her accomplishments. That is a long way from a bill to allow mothers to breast feed in public and as far as I can tell that may be Lynn's marquee legislation. Also you never hear Mae running to the newspaper's and whinning about everything. My vote is with Mae and she will prevail in the August primary.

By: govskeptic on 7/26/10 at 8:36

The defeat of Bob Rochelle was the best thing that has happened in Wilson Co politics in the last 30 yrs.

By: pswindle on 7/26/10 at 11:41

We do not need these ladies. We need a complete change. DeKalb Co. is part of the district, and I'm telling you that these ladies are not in the know on anything,. They are an embarrassment. We need someone that works for us and not to further their own agenda. At a town meeting, Buck, fomer senator, had to come to Beavers rescue. Lynn is out for a bigger fish, she wants to represent us in Congress one day. Help us all! It is time for both to be defeated. Surely, there is someone better in the district.

By: Bellwood Bill on 7/27/10 at 8:19

What i'm wondering is who is actually running for Senate, Mae Beavers, or Aj McCall aka McCallPAC? I think Steve Gill was paid over 13k by Mae, to carry her water. But McCallPAC gave Mae $20K to cover that. Did AJ even drop out, or just marry up against alll the others to keep the power of the Establishment in power? Mae has done alot for the Republicans, but a Muppet can sit and drink coffee and vote no on everything. She has everyone carrying her water now and sets open the thrown.
Time for a change. Somebody, anybody now but her! Please! She should have retired and took the Mayor job, but waited til the last minute, after everyone had donated to her and people had decided to run for Lynns seat. Not everybody running for offices gets or has McCallPAC money. Most of the road and bridge projects Mae claimed, were paid for by Fed money anyway, and her RHINO buddy Alexander already had those in the works last year. Even he knows elections mean you have to court the locals, and cut those ribbons for the papers like Mae.
She is too buddy buddy with Black for Congress. Another bad decision. Payback for handing over the Health Freedom bill to Mae to kill again. You cant over-ride an unconstitutonal Fed law with an unconstitutional state law. The AG can't be forced by the Legislature to do anything. Its against the STATE Constitution. What about our STATE Constitution does Mae not understand? She thinks she can force all her whims on everyone, She has too much power and money anymore and has become blinded and arrogant, and looks down her nose til election time. I've voted for her for the LAST TIME.

By: Melani Stephens on 7/27/10 at 4:03

We voted for Gordon Borck. He is the only one that will unite the Conservatives! We don't have to choose between Mae & Susan. We have a real choice this election, I encourage you to google Gordon Borck. Gordon Borck is the person for the job. MelaniWilson County

By: Bellwood Bill on 7/27/10 at 6:06

Why google Borck, Melani? If you know he is the right guy, you know his website and other info and should have just posted it. He's on Facebook as well. I HAVE researched him almost since he became a candidate, and you use the same talking point as you does. Its okay to come out and say you support him and give out his other standard points, since" He is the only one that will unite Conservatives".
My observations:
Gordon lives in Rome and has a Lebanon adress listed on his site but lives in Smith County and came to TN in 93 from Phoenix, though his website says Prescott, he took over his family's business at the age of 19 but his facebook page says 21. He has a nice huge family and is, and should be proud. He is a very Religious man and he says everyone who knows him likes him. I think he is a nice guy too, but zero experience. He could do On the Job Training, and i'm sure we have lots of time for that right now. He will push for term limits, which means the first time he files the bill, and it gets voted down, he can file it again eventually. He promises to hold himself to 8 years in office, regardless, then all taxpayers need do is insure him and the family for how much, and how long? By then, he'd be fully trained and people will have all but forgotten his promise. He could even end up making a good Senator. He has many good quotes by other people and says he is a gentleman, but terms like catfight. brawl, Dimestore Drama, and other derogatory remarks toward women in general arent uncommon on his sight or in his words, and i assume condoned. My wife spotted that but i saw the pattern too. However, he is an Elder in his church and it may not be a deep seated issue for him.
An armchair quarterback can tell you the players and what the team SHOULD have done. He really has very little dirt on him to go after, so he can claim little credit or except any blame as he has not played the first play in a game.
If Gordon had started out in ANY kind of Public Service, and worked his way up the ladder for at least a couple of years like Mae, Susan and most everyone else running for an office, i would give him much more consideration. I do admire his persistence and determination, but has NO experience, and i cant take that risk with my vote. I wish he'd ran for and held a county office or something that i could look at and decide on by merit, not just a promise. I may have considered it more, but nice guy, some promises for Change, famous quotes, and articulate words got us in a Ton of trouble in the 08 elections. Never again, be it Democrat or Republican, will i go for that from another who comes from out of nowhere.
Gordon Borck is his name. I'm not asking anyone to take MY word. Look for yourself as Melani suggests. This comment is just that, my opinion.

By: Gordon_Borck on 7/29/10 at 12:34

Do not take to heart the opinions of our friend Bellwood Bill. Anyone who does a cursory check of the facts will find his opinions to be laced with half-truths, which is why he must hide behind an alias (a thing I have asked my supporters not to do when engaged in opinions regarding this legislative race). In our campaign we take full responsibility for what we say and do.

By: Bellwood Bill on 7/30/10 at 5:01

To Gordon Borck,
Ihave have used this username for years on various websites and it isnt uncommon. They are usually nothing more than a nickname, and some use them to keep people such as yourself from attacking or using their"supporters" to attack them or seek retribution. The question is not my username, (if you were aware of the general area you live in, you'd know my user name includes the community of residence) but why you attempt to use the fact people commonly have usernames, (see above) and divert attention from the facts, NOT half truths. I made screen prints of both your website as well as the sexist remarks you've made on your facebook page, and the ones posted by your "real name" supporters which you didnt condemn, but contributed to and fed off of. Had you made those comment to or about my wife she wouldnt have been as easy on you as i have been.
I do know what county, and city i live in, and i know what i did at age 19 and 21. Why would you confuse Prescott from Phoenix? I lived there a couple of years and its like saying you're from Nashville when you live in Lebanon. Of course, after my last post, i'm sure those little details have been corrected.
1 Those age and resident oversights are minor details, but the catfight, Dimestore Drama, referee for two women, and other sexist comments arent.
2..Although much of my comment was complimentary, my main point was that you have no experience, yet instead of defending or proving your qualifications, you went into attack mode and went after my free speech, be it anonymous or not. And i stand by my prior statement.
3. I posted what i did not only because they are facts, but to see if you would still claim to be a Gentleman you do, or go on the attack to defend yourself. This IS afterall, your theme of your campaign. What did you do when you were critcized? The very same thing you brag of putting an end to.
So thank you for responding to my comment with an even thinner skin than even i suspected you'd have. Now i know that when someone actually confronts you, how YOU react. How does it feel to have to defend yourself against criticism? This was a Test...
Mr. Borck...You are not ready to be a Senator

By: Gordon_Borck on 8/1/10 at 7:01

Hmmm...It seems I've hit a nerve with Bellwood Bill.
Well, I stand by what I've said and my real name is on it. My supporters can stand by what they say, and their real names will be on their opinions. And any honest person with concerns knows how to reach me because my contact information is listed on my website at
Thanks to my many dedicated supporters who have born with me through the heat of this campaign.