TN-5 GOP Nominee Andy Ogles on Inflation, OPEC, and Energy Independence

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed Tennessee’s 5th Congressional District GOP nominee Andy Ogles in the studio to discuss inflation, OPEC, and the need for America to produce its own energy.

Leahy: In the studio, the GOP nominee for the 5th Congressional District here in Tennessee, Andy Ogles. Welcome back, Andy.

Ogles: Good morning.

Leahy: And, of course, the original all-star panelist, Mr. Crom Carmichael is in the house. Good morning, Crom.

Carmichael: Good morning, Michael.

Leahy: It’s always a delight to have you. And we missed you, Crom.

Carmichael: Well, I was over in Linville, North Carolina.

Leahy:  Enjoyed playing a little golf?

Carmichael: Played a little golf, but didn’t play nearly as well as I enjoyed looking at the scenery.

Leahy: There you go.

Carmichael: The colors are spectacular.

Leahy: Now, Andy here, actually has – how long is it now? Twenty-seven days. Let’s take a look at the list. Twenty-seven days.

Ogles: We got 27 days, 13 hours, 25 minutes, and 26 seconds till the polls close.

Leahy: Till the polls close.

Ogles: Not that I’m counting.

Leahy: Not that he’s counting, Crom. And, of course, Crom, Andy is in the very important 5th Congressional District. Remember to set the stage here on this; right now, I think as of today, the Democrats have a very narrow lead in the House of Representatives.

I think it’s like 221 to 212, something like that, with two vacancies. Just a few seats will flip the House to Republican control and begin the long march back to save our constitutional republic.

The word that I use, since you’re a nerd as well, Andy, as I am, a political nerd, the word that I use is the nadir. Nadir, the low point of our constitutional republic. I believe that will be the day before the midterm elections.

And the slow, steady march back will begin on midterm elections. And you, as the Republican nominee here in the 5th Congressional District could well be part of beginning of that march back. Right now, there are seven Republicans in Tennessee in the delegation to Democrats.

Your district is currently held by a Democrat, Jim Cooper, but it’s been, boundaries redrawn to be more favorable to a Republican. If you win on November 8th, that will be a plus-1, a takeaway, and that delegation will be eight Republicans and one Democrat, and so, moving towards control of the House of Representatives.

You’ve been out working pretty hard. Crom has been playing golf. What have you been doing?

Ogles: (Chuckles) Well, it’s just grassroots all the time. I think we talked in a previous segment, yesterday my son, our youngest, had a cross-country race and we had an event, and I missed it.

And that’s part of, I signed up for this. I really can’t complain. But that work-life balance is a challenge, especially during election season. But this race is important.

When they were drawing the districts, they looked across the country, and this was one of those ones that they felt should be drawn Republican.

And, of course, it looks like we’re definitely trending that way. The Republicans are going to win the House. The question is, what is the margin? So the real challenge, I think, is the Senate. And so Georgia, Arizona, Nevada, and Pennsylvania, what happens in those?

Because the House, under McCarthy’s plan – provided he’s the Speaker, and I think he will be – we can do all this great stuff, but you also have to get it through the Senate.

Leahy: Exactly. Now, the district contains the southern part of Davidson County now, and the western half of Wilson County, the eastern half of Williamson County. I’m barely in the district. If you were to win, you would be my congressman. And by the way, I’m going to vote for you. (Laughter)

Ogles: Thank you. I appreciate that.

Leahy: And then all of Marshall, all of Maury, and all of Lewis County – Crom, what district do you live in?

Carmichael: Well, I’m in Green Hills.

Ogles: So you’re most likely in Mark Green’s district. So it comes up just short of Green Hills and kind of breaks east. So, like, Vanderbilt and Belmont are in Mark Green’s district, and David Lipscomb would be in my district.

Leahy: Okay. So when you’re out there and you’re talking to people, what are the kinds of things that you’re hearing?

Ogles: Well, we are in an affluent area. We’re in an area that is booming economically, but even here, people are worried about this economy because they see that fuel is costing more, eggs and milk and bacon are costing more.

Leahy: Right now, see, right there, you got me. Bacon costs more. How can we live without bacon? Well.

Carmichael: Everything in the supermarket. I saw where there was a baker where some of his customers were complaining about his price increases. And so he got a big whiteboard.

And he put it up on the wall. And he said he put the price of flour in January of 2021. The price of flour in January 2022. The price of flour in July of 2022. And all of his main ingredients have gone up. Like. Anywhere from 60 percent to 150 percent.

Leahy: Thank you, Joe Biden.

Carmichael: It was absolutely astounding how much. And so I think that inflation for the average person – I mean, if you’re a renter, the cost of your rent has gone up 30 percent in the last two years.

Leahy: If you’re a renter, you are just getting crushed.

Carmichael: Between energy, renting, your rent and your food, you’re probably in the 20 percent inflation, 20 to 30 percent inflation.

Leahy: The people that can least afford to deal with that.

Carmichael: And Biden’s solution is what? You’re reading something, Andy, about Congress voting to do something with OPEC?

Ogles: Now there’s this talk, and I think it’s just talk, of challenging OPEC basically on antitrust grounds. The problem is, then you get this back-and-forth.

Leahy: OPEC has been around for, like, half a century.

Carmichael: How is it exactly that OPEC falls under exactly how does that fall under U.S. law?

Ogles: And so what they do is they turn around and cut oil production more.

Carmichael: No, I’m just trying to understand, how does Congress think that OPEC – OPEC, let’s remember is the …

Leahy: Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and they’re led by Saudi Arabia. But Venezuela is in it, and …

Carmichael: We’re not in it. Okay, so OPEC doesn’t touch the United States geographically. And all of a sudden, the Democrats think that we’re going to sue them in the justice department for antitrust?

Ogles: And I literally just looked at the article and so just glancing at it, it seems to have bipartisan support. Now, there was talk about doing this under the Bush administration. It had bipartisan support, and the administration was against it.

Because I think the reality is on the ground of, where are you going with this? How are you going to enforce it when all we really have to do is just focus on our own energy?

Leahy: Why don’t we produce more energy here?

Ogles: Drill, baby, drill.

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Andy Ogles” by Andy Ogles. 






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