Thursday 15 November 2018

Marsha Blackburn shakes off Taylor Swift’s intervention to win in Tennessee

Swift had said Blackburn’s voting record “appals and terrifies me”.

The so-called Taylor Swift effect failed to flip Tennessee as the Republican candidate for the US Senate wins (Ian West/PA)
The so-called Taylor Swift effect failed to flip Tennessee as the Republican candidate for the US Senate wins (Ian West/PA)

By Keiran Southern, Press Association Los Angeles Correspondent

The so-called Taylor Swift effect failed to flip Tennessee as the Democrats’ candidate for the Senate lost to Republican Marsha Blackburn.

Swift had broken her long-held silence on political matters to announce she would be voting for Phil Bredesen in her home state in the US midterm elections.

The popstar said Blackburn’s voting record on issues such as LGBT rights “appals and terrifies me”, adding she would like to support women in office but “I cannot support” Blackburn.

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Marsha Blackburn has been elected to the Senate, despite opposition from Taylor Swift (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Following Swift’s intervention in October, voter registrations spiked. But it failed to stop staunch conservative Blackburn taking the Senate seat after she beat Bredesen on Tuesday.

Blackburn is the first female to represent the state in the Senate.

The result should not come as a surprise as Tennessee, in the US South, is considered a safe Republican state.

In presidential elections it has voted with the Republicans since 2000 and in 2016 60% of voters opted for Donald Trump.

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I’m writing this post about the upcoming midterm elections on November 6th, in which I’ll be voting in the state of Tennessee. In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now. I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country. I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG. I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent. I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love. Running for Senate in the state of Tennessee is a woman named Marsha Blackburn. As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn. Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me. She voted against equal pay for women. She voted against the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which attempts to protect women from domestic violence, stalking, and date rape. She believes businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples. She also believes they should not have the right to marry. These are not MY Tennessee values. I will be voting for Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives. Please, please educate yourself on the candidates running in your state and vote based on who most closely represents your values. For a lot of us, we may never find a candidate or party with whom we agree 100% on every issue, but we have to vote anyway. So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count. But first you need to register, which is quick and easy to do. October 9th is the LAST DAY to register to vote in the state of TN. Go to vote.org and you can find all the info. Happy Voting! 🗳😃🌈

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

As she announced her voting intentions in October, Swift said: “In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now.

“I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country.”

As the result from Tennessee became clear, Laura Ingraham, a conservative host of Fox News, tweeted: “Hey @taylorswift13, haters gonna hate. #shakeitoff.”

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