Beavers, McDonald Battle For State Senate Seat

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17th District State Senate candidates Mae Beavers and George McDonald are shown at a recent political forum at Cannon County High School.

One of the more heated races in the Nov. 2 State General Election is for the Tennessee District 17 State Senate seat.

It pits incumbent Mae Beavers, loved by conservatives and loathed by liberals, against George McDonald, a farmer and small businessman from Smith County who has never held public office.

Both candidates have attacked each other’s stances on the issues and character hard, and each has been the subject of vicious attack ads by the opposition party.

The 17th District is comprised of Cannon, DeKalb, Wilson, Smith, Trousdale, Macon and Clay counties.

The Cannon Courier contacted both candidates to elicit their thoughts on the major issues and why they would be elected over their opponent.

What do you see as the major issues facing the facing Tennessee, the 17th Tennessee District and Cannon County now, and during the next four years?

BEAVERS: The major issue right now is the budget and being able to keep taxes low and regulations off business so as to create jobs.  Jobs are a major issue for Cannon County and all of the other 7 counties in my district.  One of the major issues next year will be balancing the budget and making the tough decisions, something I have done for several years.

MC DONALD: Nashville needs some folks with common sense and real world experience to solve problems and create jobs. I’m not a politician, so I offer that experience based on our Volunteer Values.

Bringing jobs back to Tennessee and keeping them is critical. We can get back to work by easing burdens on small businesses, providing small businesses with tax incentives and cutting job-killing red tape.

For Cannon County and our other rural communities, we need to build and maintain infrastructure like better roads and access to broadband. With stronger infrastructure and a well-educated workforce, Tennesseans will be back on the job.

How do you plan to address them?

BEAVERS: I plan to continue my stance for the people and against higher taxes and more regulations on business so that companies will look at Tennessee as a great state to do business.

MC DONALD: We must strengthen our education system to prepare our children to compete in a global economy. We also have to improve opportunities and skills of our adult workforce so they can better provide for themselves and their families.

We must hold politicians accountable for every tax dollar spent, starting with cutting legislative expenses and per diems.

State government must live within its means. The state budget can and should be balanced by cutting spending and waste – not by raising taxes. I oppose any additional state taxes and most specifically, a state income tax.

For too long many Nashville politicians have been focused on partisan bickering instead of getting the job done for us. My parents taught me that to get things done, you need to get along with people. I have always worked with people, not against them. I don’t care if an idea comes from a Democrat, a Republican or an Independent. If it’s a good idea, I want to find a way to make it work.

Why should voters elect you over the person you are running against?

BEAVERS: I am a true conservative with a proven track record.  I have served and know the people of the 17th Senatorial District.  I have helped get funding for road projects, bridges, grants for waterlines, etc.  I think my experience and my proven conservative leadership, plus my willingness to stand up for the people always make me the choice for Cannon County.

I am not indebted to any special interest and will continue to serve the people in a manner that represents their conservative values in this State.  I am pro-life, endorsed by Tennessee Right to Life; endorsed by the NFIB who represents business; and by the NRA, the Lebanon FOP Lodge #83.

MC DONALD: It’s time Cannon Countians are represented Senator who understand their challenges and who can get along with others to make things work instead of the politicians’ way of partisan bickering. I have been farming and creating jobs for many years, so I understand the frustrations we all have with Nashville politicians who are more concerned with having their pictures in the paper or working against each other instead of working for us.

It’s also time that our State Senate shares in the sacrifice we all make each day. As your State Senator, I will work to freeze Senators’ pay, cut the perks like reimbursement for meals and travel, and I will personally refuse the taxpayer-funded health insurance provided to legislators because I believe in setting examples.

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October 22, 2010 at 3:32pm
First off, Kevin--seems a more fitting deadline would have been "Beav takes on Big Mac" or "Big Mac tries to tackle the Beav" oh well, a liberal could never do stand up comedy anyway.

But Kevin, will you address Beavers' stand on this:

"BEAVERS: I am a true conservative with a proven track record. .... I have helped get funding for road projects, bridges, grants for waterlines, etc."

How can you promise "to keep taxes low" and get funding for bridges, roads, water lines, etc.....what do you do, just go over to the well, bring up the bucket, and lo and behold there is the money to do all those projects???

" balancing the budget and making the tough decisions" ...what about saying no to pork barrel projects like roads, bridges and water lines--if the community can not budget for these as the years go by, why should someone elses tax money be spent in areas where they don't live.

Help me out Kevin--hard for me to follow that line of thought.

October 22, 2010 at 5:28pm
No dailyreader, I'll let Beavers answer for her own stands.

I will, however, note that there are a number of roads and bridges in Cannon County — as there are in every county — that fall under the state's domain. One prime example is the one which runs right through Woodbury.
October 22, 2010 at 8:00pm
Sounds like both candidates have good ideas and in several cases share the same ones. As a voter it seems we are left to decide based upon either promises or track record. With one candidate we have no tract record. With the other we do have a tract record and one that seems most admirable.
October 23, 2010 at 12:14am
dailyreader I am sure there are a lot of things that are hard for you to follow.

It is simple mathematics that drive projects like building new roads, installing new water lines and building bridges in small communities like Woodbury using someone else's tax monies (i.e., grants)
who do not live here.

There is not enough industry, people or time in small communities like ours to "budget as the years go by" as you say because the money is simply not there to budget. It is being used on things like schools, jails, hospitals and other necessities of everyday life. The grants we get help to supplement what we cannot afford to do.

Using your logic, you should never have the right to travel out of the State of Tennessee and drive on another road or cross another bridge in any other state because you don't live there and pay taxes on the road or bridge you are driving on.

Sometimes, I think you must be having flashbacks on that 1960's acid you were taking when you were protesting the war because it is like you lose all sense of reality.

You question Mae Beavers promise to "keep taxes low" and of course disregard George McDonald receiving almost $1,000,000 dollars worth of farm subsidies to not harvest his crops paid for by mine and your tax dollars.

You of course disregard the new Health Care Law passed by your liberal Democratic Party that funds obortions using tax dollars.

You are a trouble maker. You don't live in this county and you do not vote in this county. You can not vote for either Mae Beavers or George McDonald, your goal is to simply instigate.

Worry about Murfreesboro since that is where you live and vote at. Leave Woodbury to the people who have a vested interest in it.

October 23, 2010 at 6:35am
"That's the fault of community leaders and taxpayers throughout the decades, who didn't have the foresight to set money aside for future needs."

You are correct, Kevin, --the local community did not plan ahead for water distribution and associated problems and tax payer's money from other states and counties is being used for this project and The Beav endorses---sounds something like spreading the wealth--socialism or something like ythat ;;...Maybe even providing for the general welfare?

So if state routes need outside state money, like that coming from the stimulus bill to update roads and bridges "that fall under the state's domain", we again have something that walks like a duck, talks like a duck and must be...

So The Beav is going to keep taxes low, reduce spending and "get funding for road projects, bridges, grants for waterlines, etc.:
Money from other districts and states.

More of that dadblasted socialism -even Republicans are catching it.

rd77--I was using Kevin's statement when addressing the water problem, it is quoted in full at the start of this post. I know--it is a problem for some to understand the absurdity and duplicity of those who want to cut and reduce taxes and still get funding and grants for roads and bridges and water lines.
October 23, 2010 at 7:00am
dailyreader, you can mix apples and oranges and pears and grapes and whatever all you want, but the fact is Beavers did not have a vote in whether the stimulus should -- or should not -- have been passed.

Now, and I hope you will understand this, as a state senator she, as is the case with all other state senators, does have a vote as to how money the state has should, and should not, be used.
October 23, 2010 at 7:37am
rd77 "George McDonald receiving almost $1,000,000 dollars worth of farm subsidies to not harvest his crops paid for by mine and your tax dollars"---

and your and my tax dollars paid hundreds of thousands of dollars ($10 million or more) to some very well known Republicans right here in Cannon County, some active in campaigns to elect REpublicans--did The Beav chastize at that gathering them for backing up to the trough or milking that cow for all they could get---not a word about her fellow Republicans taking that money but if a Democrat running for office does?? Hypocrisy?

Kevin--so it is alright to wheel and deal and try to maximize funds for your district, even touting your influence to gain votes and at the same time denouncing very emphatically how those funds became available for your disposal?? Seems like hypocrisy to me but I am a liberal Democrat?

Its pork and socualism if it goes elsewhere but if you can control it, it is jobs and votes.

October 23, 2010 at 7:55am
No dailyreader, it is not hypocritcal to do the job one is elected to do. The fact is the funds were made available. Beavers had no choice in that. She did have a choice in how it is spent, which she was elected to do.
October 23, 2010 at 8:06am
no matter which party affiliation, most incumbents politicians and their total lack of vision and or inability to react is big a part why we are in this current economical predicament. ALL incumbents are and should be at risk of being replaced. Proof of this outrage is the number of totally inept and incompetent challenger candidates who still remain in contention.

I guess you believe McDonald should refuse the appropriated state and federal fund on moral issues? One democrat this independent will vote for is McDonald. I hope you wont complain about the farmer with a full mouth and while addressing you obesity issues.
October 23, 2010 at 8:30am
Speaking of farmers... can anyone here explain why President Obama and our current Congress is paying multi-million dollar settlements to black farmers to the tune of over 60,000 of them while the census shows there were only about 39,000 of them in the U.S.? This is our tax dollars at work and we the people need to hold our congressmen and our president accountable for this. Where are the answers on this issue?
October 23, 2010 at 10:13am
dailyreader just to be clear, I do have a hard time "understanding the absurdity and duplicity" of most of your statements because they are at best futility.

You are possibly the worst person I have ever read when it comes to the flow of your arguments. It is like you have an idea in your head and you start typing it midway through your thought process.

I have said it before, you really need to find some poor sap to listen to your manure before you post a comment. It might help you become more literate and understand how to structure your arguments.

Try posing your crap on the DNJ website since you live in Murfreesboro and cannot vote for either Mae or George.

You are a troublemaker and an instigator. Your liberal agenda and nonsense arguments mean nothing because you don't live here, you don't pay taxes here and you have no vested interest in anything that happens here.

Spread your liberal manure in your own town.
October 24, 2010 at 7:56am
Blue, if I understand it correctly a class action suit was heard and won by the black farmers against U.S. Government declaring application discrimination and unfair distribution of fund allowed to farmers.

I know prejudice exist and i believe it always will. it may not be a black/ white thing but will always be a thing.

But for sure i know; you cant pass a law to make me not prejudice, it will probably have a reverse effect (and will effect more then just me-my son who is not prejudice will have to pay that bill). AND i hope future generations are not segmented and punished because of our misdeeds. (my great-grand children will have to bow to a muslin because we wouldn't or tried to stop their worship?)

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