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Olsen formally announces congressional run at democratic rally

Hannah Swayze • Oct 21, 2017 at 10:48 PM

Dr. Martin Olsen, a Johnson City resident, East Tennessee State University Obstetrics and Gynecology professor and medical practitioner, formally announced his bid Saturday for the Tennessee 1st U.S. House District seat held by Phil Roe at a Democratic Party Rally held at Sycamore Shoals State Park. 

Olsen first informally announced his bid back in August and since then has visited 10 counties in the district. 

His plans are to run on a platform that emphasizes responsible change.

"Responsible change is planned, incremental change where you study your change and then you make your next change based on what your learned from the last change," Olsen said."The campaign is also about bringing people together again. We live in a very divisive time. We live in a time so divisive that people are afraid to talk to each other sometimes, and it's appropriate to bring people back together again."

Olsen is focusing on three main issues: jobs, education and health care. And of course, standing up against “Trumpism.”

To win, Olsen says he needs one-third of those in the district who voted for Trump to vote for him. And though Tennessee is a consistently red state, Olsen believes that people have seen that what is happening now isn’t working and hopes that those who voted Republican will try something new.

Olsen said he believes the Republican party has lost its way and that there are a lot of voters and Republicans who agree.

“(The Republican party) used to stand for the government (staying) out of your life and fiscal responsibility. So fiscal responsibility is gone when you have a tax cut that adds 1.5 trillion to the debt that young people are going to have to face when my generation moves on. And I would say that the Democratic party is getting back to its roots and standing up for everyday Americans. So anybody that believes that standing up for everyday Americans is the way the government should make its decisons is welcome in the ‘Olsen for Congress’ tent.”

Despite the redness of the state, the hopeful doctor believes he can win. 

“I have Democratic supporters, independent supporters (and) Republican supporters, and I hope folks wil keep an open mind and decide what's best for them and their families and not just do what people tell them to do, not just do what they they've always done, in the next election,” Olsen said.

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