In a statement released on Thursday, Murfreesboro businessman Shane Reeves attacked former State Rep. Joe Carr’s (R-Lascassas) initial “question mark” rating from the National Rifle Association, contrasting it with his own “A” rating.
Both men are vying for the Republican nomination in the January 25 special primary election in the 14th State Senate District. Former State Senator Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville) resigned from the seat in November to accept a position with U.S. Department of Agriculture in the Trump administration.
On Friday, Carr hit back.
“Today I am pleased to announce that the NRA has scored my record and gave me an A, just as I expected,” Carr said in a statement.
“My score is not qualified with a “q”, indicating it is based on responses to a questionnaire, but on my actual RECORD and RESULTS as a legislator. The mudslinging and misinformed attack from Shane Reeves, and his attempt to create an issue over the NRA delay in recording my score — through no fault of my own — is just another example of ‘his shoot first aim later’ approach in his campaign,” Carr continued.
“Earlier this week Shane Reeves launched a mudslinging attack against Joe Carr concerning the National Rifle Association (NRA) grades for candidates in the 14th District State Senate primary election. Republican State Senate candidate Joe Carr issued the following statement today after the NRA acknowledged yesterday that they had ‘found’ the response to the questionnaire he mailed to them over a week ago,” the Carr campaign release noted.
“After calling the NRA yesterday to ask when they expected to correct and update their website regarding the candidate grades for the 14th District, after I emailed them a photo of my response Wednesday, they informed me that they had ‘found’ my completed questionnaire. Rachel Cole, at the NRA, said: ‘as Murphy’s Law would have it we found your survey this morning.’ When I asked when they would post the score she indicated it might take a while,” Carr said in the statement.
The NRA scoring system notes a subtle difference in the ratings received from the group by Carr and Reeves.
According to the NRA, this is the difference between the “A” rating Carr has received and the “AQ” rating Reeves has received:
A – Solidly pro-gun candidate. A candidate who has supported NRA positions on key votes in elective office or a candidate with a demonstrated record of support on Second Amendment issues.
AQ – A pro-gun candidate whose rating is based solely on the candidate’s responses to the NRA-PVF Candidate Questionnaire and who does not have a voting record on Second Amendment issues.
The Reeves campaign responded, citing a vote Carr missed in 2013.
As a career politician, Joe Carr may try to brush this off, but this is exactly the type of behavior that voters are sick of. When Joe Carr had a decision between the 2nd Amendment and his fledgling political career, he selfishly chose his career, as he so often does. And as an aside, he hasn’t won since. The voters in this election have a clear choice: Shane Reeves, a candidate choosing service over self or Joe Carr, the typical self-serving, career politician.
The winner of the Republican nomination in the January 25 special primary election will face Democrat Gayle Jordan, who is unopposed in the Democratic primary, in the March 13 special general election.
Editors Note: Both the Shane Reeves for State Senate Campaign and the Joe Carr for State Senate Campaign are Tennessee Star advertisers.