By now this is old news, of course, but for the last few days I couldn't help but think just which Tennessee superdelegate was it Governor Bredesen was talking about in the Philadelphia Inquirer earlier this week? For a refresher, let us look at the words spoken by the Honorable Phil Governor:
Another worrisome sign: Bredesen said some Democrats running for local and statewide office in Tennessee are now distancing themselves from both Obama and Clinton.
"One of the superdelegates said to me, 'I'm in a swing district and both of them are poison to me,' " Bredesen said.
Making educated guesses and looking at the list of delegates many astute political watchers made assumptions as to whom the culprit was. John Rodgers of the City Paper seemed to cement the conventional wisdom by putting the word "think" in quotes when introducing this denial by Rep. Lincoln Davis's spokesman, Tom Hayden:
"I don't think the governor was speaking about Lincoln Davis because he did not say this to the governor."
But is the key word "think" here or is it the rest of this sentence? I mean the denial is in there stated rather plainly after all, is it not? Why say "think" at all then? Well, the Governor is the Governor and one doesn't put words in the governor's mouth. Tom Hayden can't say who the Governor was referring to because Tom Hayden is not the Governor.
Now, of course, the Governor is never going to say whom he was referring to and whomever said it to the Governor is not likely to cop to it. But if one takes at face value the Davis denial, if one accepts the explicit denial that Lincoln Davis did not say this to the Governor, I thought it only fair to get some responses from other possible suspects.
When asked for a confirmation or a denial that his boss, Congressman John Tanner, was the superdelegate being referred to, spokesman Randy Ford said the following:
I'm not in a position to confirm or deny. As you know, Congressman Tanner isn't yet decided in the primary race but looks forward to a successful election year for the Democratic Party. He talks regularly with Gov. Bredesen and others in the delegation on a variety of topics, but we don't comment on those private conversations.
The other member of the Congressional delegation who would seem to fit the description would be Congressman Bart Gordon of the Sixth Congressional District:
Congressman Gordon doesn’t recall having any conversations with the governor regarding the election. I would suggest you ask Governor Bredesen who he was speaking about since he has been all over the country talking about the issue.
Of course, none of this proves anything but if one is going to parse statements there is certainly plenty to go around, is there not?
- ALEX B FRUIN INHERITANCE TRUST; CANDACE F STEFANSIC INHERITANCE TRUST; CANDANCE F STEFANSIC INHERITANCE TRUST; FRUIN, ALEX B TRUSTEE; FRUIN ALEX B INHERITANCE TRUST; STEFANSIC, CANDACE F TRUSTEE; STEFANSIC CANDACE F INHERITANCE TRUST; STEFANSIC CANDANCE F INHERITANCE TRUST
- ROSS, BRIDGETT D
- COOKE, ETHEN LANYARD TRUSTEE; COOKE, ETHEN LEWIS ESTATE
- JACOBS, JESSICA ALEXANDRA; JACOBS, ERIKA BESS