Politics

Audio Catches Cohen in Blackburn Jump-Off-a-Bridge Bind

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Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., participates in a press conference on medical cannabis research reform on Thursday, April 26, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Audio of Tennessee Democratic Rep. Steve Cohencaught him saying he wished President Donald Trump would tell Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn to jump off a bridge.

The audio obtained by HuffPost was of Cohen at a community prayer breakfast in Memphis supporting former Gov. Phil Bredesen, who is running for Senate against Blackburn.

Specifically, Cohen was talking about how Trump was visiting the state to endorse Blackburn before the primary in the state.

“The big orange president .... He’s going to come down here and he is going to endorse Marsha Blackburn, because Marsha Blackburn, if he says, ‘Jump off the Harahan Bridge,’ she’ll jump off the Harahan Bridge,” he said. “I wish he’d say that.”

Guests are heard laughing at the remarks.

In response, Bredesen’s campaign provided HuffPost with remarks he made at the same event where he did not explicitly criticize Blackburn or Trump.

“I really don’t want [this election] to be about my opponent and who’s best and who’s worst or who’s made most mistakes, or things like that,” he said at the time. “I really want this election to be about ideas, and I want you to ask everyone to vote for the person who they think got the best ideas about how to create opportunity in Tennessee, and create opportunity in the United States of America.”

Cohen told HuffPost in a phone interview he didn’t wish Blackburn harm.

“It was obviously humor,” he said. “I wish her no harm. I hope she doesn’t get the Senate. And I wish she wasn’t a lackey for Trump. But I don’t wish her physical harm.”

Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates Tennessee’s Senate race Lean Republican.

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