All eyes are on the Senate this year, given the importance of whether or not the GOP could regain control of the upper chamber in addition to taking the White House. Every seat counts, so it will doubtless come as disturbing news to Republicans that Tennessee Senator Bob Corker could be facing a serious challenge from the Left. His opponent has come out of the primary clearly poised to not only rally the base but round up a fair amount of the independent vote as well. For an update, we go to Bloomberg.

The Tennessee Democratic Party is disavowing the man who won the party’s nomination to challenge Republican Sen. Bob Corker in November, saying the little-known candidate belongs to an anti-gay hate group.

Mark Clayton, 35, reported raising no money and campaigned little but received more than 48,000 votes, twice the number of his nearest competitor in Thursday’s seven-candidate Democratic primary.

A hate group? Who could that be?

“Mark Clayton is associated with a known hate group in Washington, D.C., and the Tennessee Democratic Party disavows his candidacy, will not do anything to promote or support him in any way, and urges Democrats to write-in a candidate of their choice in November,” read the statement.

Clayton is vice president of the Public Advocate of the United States, a Virginia-based group that advocates a conservative social agenda. The Southern Poverty Law Center calls it a hate group. Its opposition to gay rights is extreme: “GAY MUPPETS CONDEMNED BY PUBLIC ADVOCATE AND NOW SENATOR JIM DEMINT,” “Gay Curriculum Already Out Of Closet And Into Some City Classrooms To Millions In New York” and “Eating Chicken Declared A Hate Crime Pro-homosexual Socialist Dictators Attack Private Companies just like their President Barack Obama Attacks Private Companies” read recent press release headlines.

Sure, it’s easy to poke fun at a situation like this. It’s not as if Corker was in any trouble to begin with. But does anyone have their hand on the tiller in Tennessee for the Democrats these days? I’ve traveled to the Volunteer State a fair bit in recent years, and iut’s hard to imagine their being this disorganized. Did they even try? For the record, the Democrats are claiming that he only won because his name came first in the alphabet. I think I’ve heard that one before.

Well, on the plus side… the guy has a really nice looking dog.