When Dresden's Ned Ray McWherter decided to make a run for governor in 1986 after 14 years as speaker of the state House, he had to learn what the differences were between the three regions of the state - and what similarities he could find between himself and the folks over the mountain."And it took me about three years before I was really comfortable campaigning there," he said.
Dunn and McWherter are part of an exclusive club. They are among just eight people to be elected governor or senator from west of the Tennessee River since the beginning of the 20th century.
McWherter believes a win by fellow Democrat Ford, and to a lesser degree Republican Bryant, "could make it helpful for younger men and women in West Tennessee. ... If Ford were not to be successful, I can see it being another decade or more before you'd have any real activity in West Tennessee
The article is worth a gander.