By LUCAS L. JOHNSON II
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The Tennessee Republican Party appears to be standing by a freshman congressman seeking re-election despite the revelation of a recorded conversation of the pro-life proponent urging his mistress to get an abortion. Executive Director Adam Nickas said in a statement this week that the transcript first reported by the Huffington Post is the same type of "smear campaign" tactics used against Rep. Scott DesJarlais when he ran in the 2010 election, "which voters overwhelmingly rejected."
DesJarlais on his website espouses a platform that opposes abortion.
Nickas did not immediately respond to follow up questions Thursday from The Associated Press on whether the GOP plans to distance itself from DesJarlais and voter perception that indicates the congressman acted opposite his platform.
The undated phone recording appears to have been made before DesJarlais' divorce from his wife, Susan, was finalized in 2001.