Signs declaring “Gays & Lesbians for Anna Page” unauthorized by campaign

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The Tennessean, Melissa Penry on WKRN News 2 and Sean Braisted’s blog “Nashville for the 21st Century” are all reporting that Metro Councilwoman Anna Page is the target of unauthorized signs saying “Gay & Lesbians for Anna Page”.

The signs, which have a rainbow colored background, were placed in several locations (and several were picked up by Page campaign workers and placed in the back seat of a car based on WKRN News 2 video) appear to have been professionally produced.

Page, who is the owner of Rebel Hill Florist, has been representing the 16th District since she won a special election last November to replace Amanda McClendon (who left the council after she won an election making her a Metro judge).

Page is seeking a four-year term and is facing four opponents – Ira A. Antonio "Tony" Tenpenny, Jerry Austin, Charles O. French and Karen Van Dyke – to represent District 16. The district covers the Woodbine, Flat Rock and the Nolensville Road area

No GLBT group has endorsed Page in the election, and the signs did not indicate any group or association that was endorsing her. The only GLBT group which has made endorsements, The Tennessee Equality Project Political Action Committee (TEP PAC), did not endorse a candidate in District 16.

“TEP PAC is not responsible for those signs and we do not know who is,” said TEP PAC board member Christopher Sanders.

Because the area is considered conservative, it has been rumored the signs were put up by some of Page’s opponents, trying to target her campaign in the conservative district. It’s not clear how many signs were put up, or who removed the signs.

Page told Tennessean writer Michael Cass that “she wasn’t aware of anyone connected with her campaign authorizing the messages. She said she figured they were a dirty trick by a political enemy, though she didn’t want to talk much about the issue.”

Page has been endorsed by Out & About Newspaper, Nashville Firefighters, Central Labor Council, Plumbers and Pipefitters Union, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Women In Numbers (WIN), and The Tennessean.

Early voting began on Friday, July 13, with election officials saying the turnout was more than they expected. More than 500 people cast their ballot as of early Friday afternoon.