Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Bredesen Campaign Kick-Off

There's a hefty group of photos and reporting on the election kick-off campaign for Gov. Bredesen in Knoxville on Tuesday via R. Neal at Knox Views. Worth a look and there's also quite a bit of comment regarding what Bredesen said.

Worth noting is the 500-plus business leaders who back his re-election, along with the state's teachers, and veterans. (Oh, and the Republican leaders who also support him.)

As always, opinions vary on the efficacy of his tenure, but there are several efforts Gov. Bredesen has brought to life. One program which I think will do far more than any test or school program is the free books offered monthly to parents with kids up to age five. Providing books, at a minimal state cost, to encourage reading and more time spent by parents to read to kids will doubtless provide a much more education/information hungry population. The program was begun by Dolly Parton in Sevier County, but the effects are spreading statewide.

Also of note is the first ever statewide TennCare Fraud unit - created after years of failure of oversight by the General Assembly. Over 257 people have been charged since 2005 and it remains the first-of-its-kind in the nation.

Real challenges remain in state government, and another massive change in the ethics (or lack of them) needs to take root among state legislators and lobbyists.

Kudos to R. Neal for his coverage of the event.

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