Republican Senate race is main attraction in upcoming August election

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Three weeks from today, Tennesseans elect their party nominees to replace retiring U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander.

It’s one race in the August 6 primary that’s drawing attention statewide and in the White House.

The age of COVID-19 means few large political gatherings, but television ads remain a staple of any campaign.

“Endorsed by President Trump, Bill Hagerty is tough on China,” is one political commercial from the former U.S. Ambassador to Japan.

Words linking to Hagerty to Trump are prominent in every single ad from Gallatin native who also served as Tennessee’s Economic and Community Development commissioner under Republican Governor Bill Haslam.

Hagerty’s chief opponent in the race takes a different track.

“We are going to have an illegal immigrant invasion if Republicans don’t win in 2020,” says one of the ads running for Vanderbilt University Medical Center trauma surgeon Manny Sethi.

He has been campaigning at nights and weekends as he keeps doing his day job.  

Two lesser-known candidates for the Republican nomination are also buying television ads.

“It’s time for judicial reform. I am Byron Bush and I am running for U-S Senate,” says one for a Nashville dentist.

He is joined by another doctor in the race. Memphis physician George Flinn ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. House in years past, but now in a senate race, he takes aim at the two leaders.

“They pledge total loyalty to the president. I am pledging loyalty to the conservative principles that make Tennessee great,” says Flinn in the commercial while pictures of Hagerty and Sethi are shown..

They are four of 15 candidates who qualified to run as Republicans in Tennessee’s U.S. Senate race.

There are also several Democrats running to become their party’s nominee in the Senate race. We’ll be looking at them in the days ahead.

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