Hamada and Starbuck Among Candidates for TN-5 Congressional Seat Who Pick Up Petitions to Run


Candidates for Tennessee’s 5th Congressional seat have begun collecting ballot access petitions. The first day to begin collecting petitions was Monday.

Candidates can pick up their petitions paperwork from either the secretary of state or their county elections office.

Williamson County elections officials have said that Robby Starbuck has begun collecting his petitions. In the document Williamson County has available for distribution, Starbuck is listed as a candidate under the name Robert Starbuck Newsom, his full legal name. Former Williamson County GOP Chair Omar Hamada is circulating petitions as well. Hamada resigned his position with the Williamson County GOP in 2019, resulting in current chairman Cheryl Brown’s ascension. Hamada was a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army and is a recipient of the Bronze Star.

Thus far, Williamson County has been updating its information on a daily basis. As of this writing, no Democratic candidates for the 5th Congressional District have picked up petitions from Williamson County.

The Tennessee Secretary of State’s office told The Tennessee Star that Geni Bachelor, Annabelle Lee, and Natisha Brooks have picked up petitions to run in the Republican primary. John Michael Hurbert has pulled nominating petitions paperwork for the 5th Congressional District Democratic primary. The secretary of state’s office has said that it will be posting updates on new candidates that have pulled petitions paperwork on a weekly basis on Fridays.

The Davidson County Election Commission says that no one has picked up nominating petitions for the 5th Congressional District from its office as of this writing.

Candidates are able to pick up petitions any time after February 7 and have until noon on April 7 to turn them in. Twenty-five valid signatures from voters located in the 5th Congressional District are required. That leaves a campaign just under two months to collect the 25  signatures, which is not considered to be a significant threshold to meet.

In the Republican primary, other than those already mentioned, publicly announced candidates include former Trump administration State Department spokesman Morgan Ortagus, former Brig. Gen. Kurt Winstead, and businessman Baxter Lee. Those seeking to run in the Republican primary must satisfy the Tennessee Republican Party guidelines in addition to federal and state requirements in order to be a valid candidate in the August 4 primary.

Odessa Kelly, who is running on the Democrat side, has raised over $500,000. Kelly began running in 2021 and was taking on outgoing Representative Jim Cooper (D-TN-05) in the Democrat primary before he announced that he was declining to run for re-election.

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Aaron Gulbransen is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Robby Starbuck” by Robby Starbuck. Photo “Omar Hamada” by Omar Hamada. Background Photo “United States Capitol” by David Maiolo. CC BY-SA 3.0.



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5 Thoughts to “Hamada and Starbuck Among Candidates for TN-5 Congressional Seat Who Pick Up Petitions to Run”

  1. John

    This has become quite the Charlie Foxtrot. Not even my district or county and I still find it disturbing that so many no-name RINOs are running.

    1. 83ragtop50

      John – I am with you in that thinking. Unfortunately, I believe that this is a result of the huge influx of left coast and northern immigrants who think we Tennesseans are too stupid to run our own state while they left theirs behind in a horrific mess. It sounds more and more like a Hollywood soap opera every day. Only fitting for Nashville and Williamson County.

    2. Stuart I. Anderson

      As well you should John. A vote in the House by any one of its 435 members has the same effect on all of us whether or not he happens to be our congressman. The problem with the candidates that you call “no-name RINOs ” is the fact that we don’t know whether or not they are RINOs because they have no/anemic records. Why would any conservative even think of voting for one of one of the No/Anemic Record no-namers when we hopefully will have officeholders with fine conservative records like Andy Ogles and/or Beth Harwell to choose from?

  2. rick

    Starbuck does not even go by his full legal name, his is Mr Hollywood, I think Williamson County is full of these weirdo’s. A NO VOTE!!

    1. Mark M

      Another Newsom from California? Obviously, he doesn’t care for transparency!!