News & Politics

Despite Taylor Swift's Endorsement of Bredesen, Blackburn Up Big in TN

FILE - This Tues., Oct. 23, 2012 file photo shows Taylor Swift performing on ABC's "Good Morning America," in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, file)

It’s been reported that after pop star Taylor Swift, who has 112 million followers on her Instagram account, urged Tennesseans to get out and vote for Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen, 65,000 people registered to vote in the state.

But her celebrity hasn’t translated into support for Bredesen. A New York Times poll of the race that pits Bredesen against GOP Rep. Marsha Blackburn shows the Republican up by 14 points.

Fox News:

Swift wrote to her followers, “As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn. Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me.”

Swift said the congresswoman “voted against equal pay for women. She voted against the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which attempts to protect women from domestic violence, stalking, and date rape. She believes businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples. She also believes they should not have the right to marry.”

Swift is not just an empty-headed celebrity. She’s brain dead. How else do you explain her parroting Democrat talking points to the letter?

Every single one of her complaints against Blackburn’s record is misinterpreted or exaggerated, or incompletely explained. For example, Blackburn does not believe all businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples —  only those private businesses where the owners’ religious beliefs are the issue. That she doesn’t understand the First Amendment isn’t surprising given the rest of her “critique.”

Blackburn shrugged off Swift’s endorsement of her opponent:

“Tennesseans are more interested in the fact that Marsha Blackburn is endorsed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, by the Fraternal Order of Police, by the Police Benevolent Association and by the National Rifle Association, where I have an ‘A’ rating and their endorsement,” Blackburn said.

I can’t think of a single instance in the last 50 years where a celebrity endorsement mattered in a statewide race. Taylor Swift may be a big star, but trying to translate that personal popularity into votes is a futile effort. The reason people vote for one candidate or another has very little to do with endorsements of any kind, be they from pop stars, sports stars, or newspapers. In a small, cumulative way, a lot of endorsements may influence the feeble minded in some instances.

Blackburn appears headed for a fairly easy win in what was once thought to be a close race.