Conservative Super PAC Claims Two TN-5 Candidates “Too Liberal For Tennessee”

Image Credit: School Freedom Fund

The Tennessee Conservative [By Paula Gomes] –

School Freedom Fund, a conservative Super PAC based in Washington, D.C., sent out mailers this week to residents in the TN-5 congressional district claiming that two of the candidates running in that race are “too liberal for Tennessee.”

On the front of the mailer, residents are asked to “guess that politician?” and then told that both are running for congress as “Republicans” and both are “beholden to liberal Democrats.”

On the back, the two candidates are revealed to be former speaker of the Tennessee House Beth Harwell, and Brigadier General Kurt Winstead who retired from the Tennessee National Guard last year.

To support their statements about Harwell, School Freedom Fund points to Harwell’s voting record for a $250 million gas tax hike in 2017 that raised the price Tennesseeans pay at the pump, and her endorsement from the Tennessee Education Association PAC in the 2018 primary race for Governor. TEA is the state affiliate of a national teacher’s union that supports critical race theory in classrooms.

School Freedom Fund claims Winstead is a “longtime Democrat who repeatedly voted in democratic primaries for years” and points to his donations to the campaigns of democrats in Tennessee such as Harold Ford in 2006.


According to The Tennessee Star, Williamson County election officials say that Winstead voted in the Democrat presidential preference primary in 2008, pulled a Democrat ballot in the August 2000 primary, and voted in the Democrat August primary in 1994. But records show that since 2010, Winstead has voted in 12 Republican primaries and zero Democrat primaries.

When The Tennessee Star asked him about his voting history, Winstead said, “In the Army, we were taught the importance of owning up to our mistakes. Voting in the wrong primary and contributing to the wrong candidates certainly fits into that category. Unlike my opponents, I haven’t spent my life planning to run for office,” he said in a statement. “Matter of fact, I never thought I’d be doing this. Before 2010, I wasn’t as involved as I should’ve been, but that changed after Biden and Obama took us into a socialist spiral. We have a country to fight for. Just like Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump, I’m a conservative leader you can trust.”

Zach Roberts, a spokesman for Winstead’s campaign, told The Tennessee Conservative that Winstead has “donated tens of thousands of dollars exclusively to Republican candidates, far outpacing any ancient democrat donations he made.” 

During a recent candidate forum, Harwell talked about voting on conservative principles despite her district holding other views. The former speaker who sits on the board of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) said that she personally disapproved of TVA’s recent decisions in celebrating Pride Month but she is one of only two conservatives who currently sit on the board.

About the Author: Paula Gomes is a Tennessee resident and reporter for The Tennessee Conservative. You can reach Paula at

3 thoughts on “Conservative Super PAC Claims Two TN-5 Candidates “Too Liberal For Tennessee”

  • July 14, 2022 at 12:59 pm

    I don’t support Harwell or Winstead, but I think this attack ad is a little much. They both are certainly Republican. I would say Harwell’s problem is that she’s a politician and Winstead’s is that he’s a lawyer. Winstead constantly emphasizes his military service, but I understand that it was all behind a desk as a lawyer. Harwell would be acceptable if we had no other choice. Fortunately, Andy Ogles is a real grassroots conservative, and the best choice IMHO.

  • July 14, 2022 at 5:52 pm

    Does the School Freedom Fund have an agenda we aren’t aware of?? My husband and I had the opportunity to meet Kurt Winstead recently in a nonpolitical situation. We were impressed by his knowledge and straightforwardness as we ‘grilled’ him with the same questions used at the recent Wilson Co. GOP debate which we had attended. People need to do their own research on the candidates rather than be influenced by PACs.

  • July 20, 2022 at 1:22 pm

    Harwell is endorsed by Williamson Strong, a leftist group that hates Republicans.


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