By Tamas Mondovics
More than 1,000 Tennessee Democrats from across the state attended the 2018 Three Star Dinner and Celebration last week in Lebanon TN. Aside from a huge turnout, the event entitled ‘Honor the Past, Celebrate the Present, and Fight for the Future reportedly saw a surge in fundraising as attendees heard from elected leaders and candidates, paid tribute to Democratic accomplishments and hoped to gain momentum leading up to November 6
According to Tennessee Democratic Party spokesperson Amanda Yanchury, the event welcomed Keynote speaker U.S. Senator Doug Jones of Alabama who spoke about to the opportunity to restore the party’s values to all levels of government.
“Thanks to each of you, we are once again loudly proclaiming the values we have held for generations,” Sen. Jones said. “Decency, honesty, dignity, and respect. Giving hate no safe harbor and leaving no one in our society behind.”
Jones has reportedly emphasized that his victory and the coming election is proof that Republicans don’t have a permanent hold on the South. U.S. Senate candidate Phil Bredesen focused on joining Senator Jones on what he reportedly called “the ‘kitchen-table issues’ in the Senate so that others can experience Tennessee as a land of incredible opportunity, as it was for him.”
As mentioned by Yanchury, Bredesen stated his goal of opening “doors and pave the way for this next generation,” adding, “I need your help — but I’m not going to pay it back. I’m going to pay it forward, and be the best damn senator you’ve ever laid your eyes on.”
Also in attendance were Democratic candidates for governor Karl Dean and Craig Fitzhugh, who while addressing the crowd, focused on capitalizing on the energy of the moment and “remembering what we’re fighting for.” Dean, reportedly stressed the importance of expanding Medicaid, while Fitzhugh spoke to the energy of Democrats around the state stepping up to run for office and
“People are fighting back against what once were overwhelming odds,” Fitzhugh said. “At the end of the day, this election is about people. People matter.”
The As reported, the TDP raised more than $450,000 and combined with investments from the DNC totaling more than $125,000, Jones was quoted saying, “It is clear that Tennessee is a “state of opportunity.”
Tennessee Democratic Party Chair Mary Mancini summed up the event when she acknowledged that more than 100 candidates are running for legislative seats, all fantastic candidates in all nine congressional races, and top-tier candidates for the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races.
“It’s a good year to be a Tennessee Democrat,” she said.