Tennessee's Senate Race Is Tighter Than Expected

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The race to replace outgoing Sen. Bill Frist in Tennessee is shaping up as one of the tightest races in the country. Polls show that Democrat Harold Ford Jr. and Republican Bob Corker are running neck and neck, despite early predictions that Corker would easily win.

Corker, a successful businessman, is the former mayor of Chattanooga. Rep. Harold Ford, of Memphis, comes from a long line of politicians; his seat was once held by his father, Harold Ford Sr.

Both of the main political parties are pumping volunteers and money into the state, helping to fund a recent onslaught of aggressive attack ads.

The candidates have become increasingly combative, with both men launching personal attacks on their opponent. Tennessee presents specific challenges for senatorial candidates. It's a state historically known for having three distinct political personalities, defined by geography.

Michele Norris talks with Tom Griscom, executive editor of The Chattanooga Times and Free Press; Jimmy Hart, editor of The Daily News Jounal in Murfreesboro, Tenn.; and Halimah Abdullah, political reporter with The Memphis Commercial Appeal.

Many are saying that the race will be decided in the independent-minded and fast-growing suburbs outside Nashville.



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