The chairwoman of the Tennessee Democratic Party apologized this week for calling the state racist during a discussion of local politics and while promoting less conventional candidates.
Mary Mancini made the comment while speaking with the Coffee County Democratic Party earlier this month about how the party should put forward conventional candidates, including black and Latinos, millennials and members of the LGBTQ community.
" I'm just going to say it outright, "Mancini said. "This is a racist state."
"We have a bit of a problem in this state, and I'm just going to say it outright. This is a racist state."
In another county party meeting, Mancini was heard on an audio recording calling Tennessee "a very racist state."
Mancini issued her apology in a statement to the Tennessean newspaper of Nashville.
" In the heat and frustration of seeing and hearing the constant drumbeat of bigotry, misogyny and homophobia coming from the Republicans at the state legislature, "Mancini said.
Tennessee Republican Party said Scott was disappointing that Mancini called the state racist, the paper reported. He said Republicans were working to lift all Tennessee up, the state's economy and efforts to boost educational attainment.
Mancini said the GOP was causing division to become "ingrained" in residents around the state. During her meeting with Coffee County Democrats, she suggested that Andrea Bond-Johnson, an African-American candidate for a seat in the state Legislature, couldn't win because the area had a small minority population.
"Two out of the Three counties in that area are extraordinarily racist, "Mancini told the group.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP " 19659005] "I was the only one who was told that we need to run someone who is not African-American in that district, because (some believed) an African-American cannot win in that district because white people will not vote for an African-American, ”Mancini said in an interview with the paper.  Her comments follow state Rep. London Lamar, a Democrat, who apologized last year for calling Tennessee racist and the Republican voters uneducated.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.