Tennessee is a deep red state, and while Blackburn seems likely to enjoy a victory that will have her move from the House to the Senate, the fact that it's even so close may give some solace for Democratic political operatives.
Rep. Marsha Blackburn, a conservative Republican, was elected to the U.S. Senate on Tuesday night, beating former Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen in a race that had been rated a toss-up by election analysts. Blackburn, meanwhile, hitched her horse to President Donald Trump, who won the Volunteer State by 26 points in 2016.
Afterward though, she managed to consolidate support across the GOP's various political circles, including from former U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher, who briefly opposed her in the primary and called for Corker to run again upon dropping out of the race. The race has been declared in favor of Blackburn.
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The Democrats won't be picking up a Senate seat in Tennessee.
One of the most popular public figures in state history and the last Democrat to be elected statewide, Bredesen led much of the early polling and kept the race deadlocked nearly until the very end, thanks to support from GOP moderates and independents. "There's somebody else here that you should vote for and she's very good at that stuff", Bredesen said Sunday, when asked about his final message to voters on the fence.
"President Trump has made three trips to Tennessee to back the Republican Marsha Blackburn running against a different kind of Democrat here".
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Describing herself as "hard core" and "politically incorrect and proud of it", Blackburn embraced her reputation as a conservative firebrand.
Blackburn took aim at Bredesen for donating to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama and receiving campaign checks from high-profile Democrats.
'She voted against equal pay for women. She fought for Tennessee values in the legislature and in Congress.
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