Tennessee House Republican Caucus Chairman Jeremy Faison, R-Cosby, says he got the opportunity of a lifetime this week when he was invited to the White House to meet President Donald Trump.
The invitation came from friend and congressional candidate Diana Harshbarger, who was invited along with a guest, to meet with the president in the Oval Office on Wednesday, Sept. 23. The President has formally endorsed Harshbarger, a pharmacist from Kingsport and political newcomer, for Tennessee’s open U.S. House First District seat in the Nov. 3 election.
“I was so surprised and incredibly honored she asked. It all happened very quickly,” Faison said.
Following a background check, COVID-19 test and a swift 10-hour drive to Washington D.C., Faison and Harshbarger were in the Oval Office two days later meeting with the President, Vice President Mike Pence and House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy. They were among a handful of other congressional candidates from around the nation invited to meet with the President that day.
“I didn’t know what to expect. President Trump asked about the congressional races back home and about our experiences operating a very competitive, grass-roots campaign. He expressed his deep affection for our state and gratitude for his supporters in Tennessee,” Faison said.
Faison says he brought another message to the President, remembering the biblical story of Mordecai and Esther from the Bible.
“I told him, ‘God has put you here for a time such as this. Tennesseans love you, our governor stands with you; Tennessee wants you to fill that (Supreme Court) seat, Mr. President.”
Trump presented Faison with a challenge coin to give to his son Tucker, a big fan of the president.
“The whole experience was an unbelievable thrill,” Faison said. “It doesn’t matter what party you belong to; it is an incredible privilege to get the opportunity to sit with the President of the United States in the Oval Office. It’s something I will never forget.”