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Gov. Bill Haslam Kicks Off Reelection Campaign - John Dunn

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam kicks off his reelection campaign. Gov. Haslam says he is ready for four more years.

Over a thousand people filled the Loveless Barn Saturday morning. The mood was optimistic as Tennessee's Governor greeted supporters and friends. Nearly four years ago Bill Haslam was elected, now he's ready for a second term. "It has been an incredible honor and privilege to do this," says Governor Haslam.

In a speech that lasted about 15 minutes, Haslam renewed his commitment to familiar principles. He says the state will live within its means, seek true education reform, and recruit high quality jobs. "Our promise to you is we're not going to let up. We're going to keep working on those things in the next four years," says Gov. Haslam.

The campaign kickoff comes just ten weeks before the primary and five months before the general election. Most political insiders expect Haslam will win easily. "One of the good things about running for reelection is you can run on your record, and we're proud of the things that Tennessee has accomplished both in job growth and education advancement," says Gov. Haslam.

The Governor highlights Tennessee's new program promising two years of free community college to high school graduates, and he says Tennessee is the state with the lowest debt per person in the country.
    
House speaker Beth Harwell says she's glad to support him. "He has been fully dedicated to number one making sure we are a low-debt state, balancing our budget, and then very dear to his heart is education, and education reform," says Rep. Beth Harwell, (R) House Speaker.

Despite his front-runner status, Haslam says he'll be working hard. "Our pledge to you is to have the kind of place that you, your children, and your grandchildren want to call home," says Gov. Haslam.

The Haslam campaign has already raised more than five million dollars. You can expect to see his campaign commercials within the next two months.

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