Gov. Bredesen of Tennessee is leaving office with high marks according to the Tennessean. A Democrat, he has higher approval ratings among Republicans. But, 74% of Tennesseans recognize him as an accomplished governor for our times.
Personally, Bredesen makes me proud that for most of my life I have been a traditional Republican. Bredesen, likewise, has many traits of Republicans of old. Such as, fiscal responsibility, moving forward with a deliberate pace, and fixing many of the things that were broken in Tennessee. Traditional Republilcans are quite different than what passes as Republicans today. Republicans today follow the gale of corporate money, Wall Street, and the noise of the moment. That is, Republicans have lost their vision. Maybe Bredesen run under the wrong banner. He has little affinity with Democrats, old or new. But, when you think about it, there was not a banner for Bredesen. He is an independent. And, independence is the virtue of our day.
Health care reform was his forte, but Breseden was insightful in areas such as solar power. He was a reformer in education, and was not overcome by the education establishment. A fate that befalls many a good man.
There remains much to be done in Tennessee. We have a regressive tax system. Tennessee hovers near the top, of all the states, in tax regressivity. Not only is the tax system regressive, it is sprinkled with other inequities that press the revenue burden to those with the lower income.
Bredesen did more than most politiciansand will be long remembered for it. You might say, he gave Tennessee a fresh start to become fair, responsible, and a generationally-minded state.