Following Phil Bredesen's loss in Tennessee, conservatives on Twitter are joking that Taylor Swift, who endorsed Bredesen, has "bad taste in men." In early October, Taylor Swift endorsed Bredesen over Marsha Blackburn for Tennessee senator, citing Blackburn's history of voting against bills that would protect women. This was a monumental move for Swift, who had yet to become political.
Conservative pundit Candace Owens wrote on Twitter: "Looks like @Taylorswift13 still has terrible taste in men." Federalist co-founder Sean Davis joked that this was continuing Swift's streak of poor choices in men. A few other lower-profile conservatives echoed the joke, playing on Swift's lingering reputation as a Hollywood serial dater.
Laura Ingraham also couldn't resist a joke on Swift's behalf, tweeting at Swift, "Haters gonna hate."
In general, Swift loomed over Blackburn's victory. At a celebration for Blackburn's win, musician John Rich gave a subtle nod to Swift by telling the crowd that Blackburn was "the biggest advocate [musicians] ever had on intellectual property rights." Indeed, as Tennessee's Representative, Blackburn has earned a reputation for advocating for intellectual property rights. She founded the Congressional Songwriters Caucus and served as its co-chair. (Notably, Representative Jim Cooper, whom Swift also endorsed in the midterm elections, serves on the committee for the Songwriters Caucus as well.) A number of conservatives have noted that Blackburn won "despite" Swift's endorsement of Bredesen. But in reality, as of early October, the polls places Blackburn squarely ahead of Bredesen; this was always going to be an uphill battle for the former Tennessee governor. Blackburn served eight terms as a Representative and she's closely aligned herself with U.S. President Donald Trump, a quality that boosted a number of candidates in 2018.
Swift's post was about more than just Bredesen, too. She also endorsed Cooper, who held onto his seat in the House of Representatives, and she encouraged her American fans, many of whom are Gen Z, to register to vote. After her post, Vote.org saw a surge in voter registrations, and a few of Swift's took to social media to say they registered expressly because of Swift.
"When I saw Taylor's post, something changed," Candace Westbrook, 18, told Refinery29 at the time. "She gets hate for breathing wrong, so to see her speak so openly and eloquently about what matters to her despite how others might look at her made all the difference. All it takes is one person to change everything."