The big race news on Thursday came when Rep. Marsha Blackburn launched her Tennessee Senate bid, igniting what could be a competitive Republican primary in Tennessee to succeed retiring Sen. Bob Corker. She announced as soon as her biggest potential primary challenger, Gov. Bill Haslam, opted out of the contest.
Blackburn has spent the days since Corker announced he would step down at the end of his second term lining up grassroots and financial support. She begins the race with a potential advantage over other possible contenders: The strong support of influential conservatives in Washington, among them David Bossie of Citizens United, who is closely aligned with President Trump.