NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — As Election Day draws ever nearer, Tennesseans will have the opportunity to select who they would like to represent them at the state and federal level. The 14-day early voting period continues until next Thursday, then Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8.
Here are the key races to watch next week:
U.S. House District 5
The big race to watch this election will be the race for the newly drawn 5th Congressional District. The district was previously represented by Rep. Jim Cooper, who elected to retire from his seat than seek reelection after the redistricting process following the 2020 Decennial Census.
The race will see Democratic State Sen. Heidi Campbell taking on the former mayor of Maury County for the seat. Andy Ogles beat out a crowded field of candidates for the Republican nomination in August. He secured 21,325 votes amid a field of 10 candidates, including a write-in campaign from Robby Starbuck Newsom.
The district, which previously included all of Davidson and Dickson counties, was redistricted in 2020 and will now include only the southern portion of Davidson County, as well as a portion of Wilson and Williamson counties and all of Maury, Lewis and Marshall counties.
Incumbent Republican Gov. Bill Lee will face a challenge from Democrat Dr. Jason Martin. Lee secured 494,362 complimentary votes in the Republican primary Aug. 4, while Martin emerged from the Democratic primary victorious with just 101,552.
Martin edged out another democratic hopeful J.B. Smiley, who garnered 100,062 votes in the August primary.
Lee has faced criticism during his tenure over COVID-19 measures and his relationship with a Hillsdale College official after that official mocked public education and public school teachers during a private event.
Martin, a physician, elected to enter the race following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing primarily on holding Lee accountable for what he felt was incompetence of the state-level leadership.