PLEASE SUPPORT ‘controversial’ (for her anti-Islam views) Vanderbilt University professor, Carol Swain, for leadership of Tennessee Republican Party

Vanderbilt University Professor Carol Swain said she’s interested in entering the race to become leader of the Tennessee Republican Party. Swain confirmed she’s “open” to the leadership role, available after current GOP party Chairman Chris Devaney announced Tuesday he planned to resign.

Tennessean  “I have not actively pursued the state party chairmanship, but I find the opportunity intriguing. I’m humbled by the fact that a number of people I respect and admire have asked me to enter the race,” Swain said Friday.

Swain is a law professor at Vanderbilt who received considerable backlash after writing a column for The Tennessean that attacked the religion of Islam.

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“If America is to be safe, it must remove the foxes from the henhouses and institute serious monitoring of Islamic organizations,” Swain wrote, adding later “we must be willing to recognize the dangers of the burka , which allows individuals to completely conceal their identities.”

The column garnered fierce criticism; at one point, roughly 100 students protested at Vanderbilt. Swain also filed a police report after she received a sexually explicit package in the mail (typical Muslim response).

Swain said she registered in 2009 as a Republican after “I spent most of my life being a Democrat.” She’s never sought elected office before. “I would say that my transparency, my decades long enthusiasm for politics and my comfort level with the media are assets, as well as my commitment to advancing the conservative agenda,” she said. “I bring a fresh perspective to the party as a minority who has risen from poverty to the middle class.”

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She said the Republican Party needs stronger leadership, and she views the chance to serve as chairwoman as “serving my country, not the Tennessee GOP.” Thursday she asked for feedback on Facebook as to whether she should run, and said she continues to pray about the decision.

“I would imagine there would be a lot of opposition to me,” Swain said. “I’m not a part of the Republican establishment, I’m not an institutional person, I’m a person … I try to live by my values. I expect other people to say what they mean and to mean what they say.”

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