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Former State Rep. Billy Spivey Joins Race to Replace Former State Senator Jim Tracy in Special Election

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Former State Rep. Billy Spivey (R-Lewisburg) announced today that he is a candidate for the Republican nomination in the special primary election scheduled to replace former State Sen. Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville) in the 14th State Senate District.

“Over two terms in the Tennessee House, I took on Common Core. I took on policing for profit, I took on the Hall Tax. And I won,” Spivey said in a statement released to The Tennessee Star early Thursday morning.

“Not by being a bully and not by playing the games of the Establishment. I won these battles by listening, thinking, and standing on principle,” he added.

“This is the passion and record that I now hope to bring to the Tennessee Senate,” the former State Rep. continued.

“These are the reasons that I humbly request the votes of the good people of District 14, and promise, if elected, to bring true conservative, anti-Establishment change to Nashville . . . where we all know it’s desperately needed,” Spivey concluded.

As The Star reported on Wednesday, the Republican and Democrat primaries will be held on January 25, and the general election will be held on March 13, “according to a writ of election issued by Gov. Bill Haslam.”

District 14 covers Bedford, Lincoln, Marshall and Moore counties and part of Rutherford County.

Early voting for the primaries begins Jan. 5 and early voting for the general election begins Feb. 21.

Former State Sen. Tracy resigned earlier this month to accept a position with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Spivey’s announcement now brings the number of candidates vying for the Republican nomination to three. Former State Rep. Joe Carr (R-Lascassas) and Murfreesboro businessman Shane Reeves have already announced their candidacies for the Republican nomination. All three are well respected viable candidates.

Victory in the January 25 is considered tantamount to election in the very Republican district. There is one announced candidate for the Democratic nomination, but that candidate’s chances of winning the March 13 general election over the Republican nominee are very slim indeed.

Spivey represented the 92nd District in the Tennessee House of Representatives for two terms, winning elections in November 2012 and November 2014.

The crowning achievement of his House legislative career came in 2016, when he led the way to end the Hall Tax, as Breitbart News reported:

In a powerful victory for conservatives, the Tennessee General Assembly voted to phase out the state’s controversial “Hall Tax” on unearned income in a drama filled final week of its 2016 session.

The unexpected victory — an annual reduction over the next six years in the current 6 percent tax on unearned income that will completely eliminate the tax by 2022 — came when two Republicans, State Rep. Billy Spivey (R-Lewisburg) and State Rep. Mark Pody (R- Lebanon ), decided to challenge the bill passed in the State Senate earlier in the session to reduce the tax by one percent next year while “intending” to reduce it further in subsequent years. The lawmakers acted with the encouragement of Americans for Prosperity-Tennessee and the Beacon Center of Tennessee,

You can read former Rep. Spivey’s full statement announcing his candidacy for the open seat in the 14th District of the State Senate here:

Like many hard-working, patriotic Tennesseans, I’ve come to realize that our state and national systems are broken. Institutions built to serve the people have become perverted to serve Establishment politicians from both parties at the expense of the average parents, business people, and aspiring young people who spend their days trying to build better lives, stronger families, and more prosperous businesses.

This situation cannot be allowed to stand if we’re to have any real hope of leaving a better Tennessee for future generations.

We can’t expect more of the same insider politicians to deliver us from the very system they’ve warped to their benefit. Now more than ever, we need men and women who will fight and win the battles necessary to restore freedoms that have been lost and roll back government power that’s grown far beyond what was originally intended by those who established the great nation we were blessed to inherit.

As a former State Representative, I’ve demonstrated time and again not only an ability to fight those battles, but to win them. The most significant battles I’ve won have come in direct opposition to Establishment forces at the top of my own party. In my time representing District 92 in back-to-back terms in the House of Representatives I didn’t just talk the conservative talk. I walked the conservative walk.

When Establishment leadership wanted to water down my effort to kill the Hall Tax, I stood firm and won. The more they pressured, the more I dug in. That experience taught me how Establishment leadership thinks and operates. It also taught me much about how they can be challenged and beaten.

We need more of that in Nashville, and now more than ever.

We need leaders who relate to issues like health care, health insurance, education, and taxation from the perspective of a hard-working, business-building, employee-hiring taxpayer rather than from the perspective of a well-connected self-serving political insider.

We need leaders who are committed to serving the people rather than serving the Establishment of either major party.

We need Christian men and women in government who understand that shrinking government power and increasing liberty empowers people to dream bigger, fly higher and achieve even greater things.

These are some of the thoughts that have been weighing on me since Jim Tracy announced that he’d be vacating his seat in the Tennessee Senate, and these are some of the reasons I’ve decided to seek the opportunity to carry the torch for the people of Senate District 14.

Having spent most of my career as a blue collar worker, I know what it means to pour blood, sweat, and sometimes tears in pursuit of a paycheck so that my family can be fed and prosper.

Having managed over 800 employees in a manufacturing facility, I know what it means to take on the challenges of large scale operations involving many valuable individuals, with each of them working hard to provide for their homes and families.

As a combat veteran of Desert Storm, I understand what it means to put everything on the line to defend the land that I know and love, and as a father of six daughters, I know the joy and hope of parents who want future generations to experience even more freedom, more prosperity, and more joy than I’ve been blessed to know in life.

Over two terms in the Tennessee House, I took on Common Core. I took on policing for profit, I took on the Hall Tax. And I won.

Not by being a bully and not by playing the games of the Establishment. I won these battles by listening, thinking, and standing on principle.

This is the passion and record that I now hope to bring to the Tennessee Senate.

These are the reasons that I humbly request the votes of the good people of District 14, and promise, if elected, to bring true conservative, anti-Establishment change to Nashville . . . where we all know it’s desperately needed.

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Copyright 2017 The Tennessee Star

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2 thoughts on “Former State Rep. Billy Spivey Joins Race to Replace Former State Senator Jim Tracy in Special Election

  1. Hank Williams

    Wow, you folks are about as ignorant as the day is long ain’t ye

  2. Stuart I. Anderson

    The only ones who should be cheered by the entry of Billy Spivey are his friends and loved ones as well as tepid conservatives and centrists because the only consequence of Rep. Spivey’s over developed ambition will be to split the conservative vote and thus greatly improve the chances for the election of Shane Reeves whose ideology is unknown and/or under construction. With Joe Carr in the race conservatives already have an outstanding candidate replace Tracy thus Rep. Spivey becomes the gun by which conservatives can shoot themselves in the foot. It’s early, but this is already shaping up to be bad day for Tennessee conservatives.

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