Yesterday we posted a video, picked up by the Tennessean, News Channel 5, Slate, and the Huffington Post, where former congressional candidate Justin Kanew confronted Tennessee Speaker of the House Glen Casada about his support for Rep. David Byrd – who has admitted on tape to sexually assaulting players he coached at Wayne County High School.
— The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) February 20, 2019
Former Speaker Beth Harwell asked Byrd to step down. Speaker Casada instead ran attack ads against the victims, then promoted Byrd to chair of the education subcommittee when he was re-elected with 78% of the vote.
In the video, Kanew asks Casada if he has heard the victims’ side of the story. Casada says that he has, and that in fact he met with the victims:
“They came into my office and spoke.”
Turns out that’s news to the victims.
Christi Rice, who has been the most outspoken of the three women who have leveled the allegations at Byrd, responded to Kanew’s video on twitter saying:
Justin, I knew that I had never spoken to Casada in any way; verbal, text, letter, messenger, carrier pigeon, etc but I also confirmed with the other 2 women and none of us have spoke to Glen Casada, ever. Period.
— Christi Rice (@51christi) February 19, 2019
Meanwhile Robbie Cain said in a message to Christi Rice obtained by The Holler that she had no idea who Casada was:
The 3rd victim has remained anonymous apart from the initial WSMV interview. Christi Rice is in contact with her and says she is “absolutely” sure she has not spoken with Speaker Casada:
The Holler has reached out to Casada’s office for comment, and so far has not heard back. We will update the story if we do.
So not only did Casada attack the victims, he also didn’t even take the time to talk to them to hear their stories- then lied about whether or not he did.
There’s nothing defensible about any of this. Since posting the original video the Holler has heard from countless women of all political stripes who have stories like this of their own.
Meanwhile a reliable source has told us they saw Channel 4’s Jeremy Finley and a crew being escorted from the building by security, after going down to Casada’s office to ask around about Byrd. And we also heard CNN is down there knocking on Byrd’s door.