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Editorial Results (free)

1. Former Deputy Governor, Hamilton County Mayor Dies -

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) – Claude Ramsey, a former Tennessee lawmaker, deputy governor and Hamilton County mayor, has died. He was 75.

2. If Only Legislators Could Focus on Important Issues -

A year-old law enabling Tennessee colleges and universities to keep secret the “proprietary” fees they pay money managers for handling risky investments is likely to be reviewed this year.

3. Tennessee Governor Vetoes Cancer Proton Therapy Bill -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam has vetoed legislation that would have required state employee insurance to cover proton therapy, an alternative treatment for certain cancers.

4. Tyson Foods: New Facility in Tennessee to Create 1,500 Jobs -

HUMBOLDT, Tenn. (AP) – Tyson Foods Inc. plans to build a new chicken production complex in Tennessee, a $300 million project that is expected to create more than 1,500 jobs when the facility begins operations in late 2019, the company said Monday.

5. Last Word: Night in the Park, Hattiloo Goes Bigger & Cohen on the Republican Soul -

A gathering in Health Science Park a little before 11:30 Monday evening by a group of protesters who Facebooked that their intent was to take down the statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest. Memphis Police showed up quickly and the police supervisor told those around the statue that the park is a private park and that no one can be in the park after 8 p.m. No arrests but the police did ask for identification from those in the park.

6. View From the Hill: Forrest Kerfuffle Might Be Sign of Bigger Problem -

Legislation that slipped through the House of Representatives honoring an unknown author who penned a Nathan Bedford Forrest apologist biography was enabled by the climate within the Republican-controlled body, a Memphis legislator says.

7. Former Sen. Douglas Henry, Longest-Serving Lawmaker, Dies -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Former Sen. Douglas Henry, a larger-than-life former state lawmaker with the longest tenure in the history of the Tennessee General Assembly, has died. He was 90.

8. Refugee Lawsuit Proceeds in Spite of Obstacles -

Tennessee is going “full speed ahead” in a challenge of the federal Refugee Resettlement Program despite threats by President-elect Donald Trump to dismantle it or, at the least, stop the flow of refugees from terrorist-linked countries.

9. Last Word: Fires In the East, Corker at Trump Tower and The Toll of the Cure -

As our week here began very windy and very rainy with clouds all day Monday, there was a different kind of overcast day unfolding in East Tennessee. And by the time of this post the National Guard was patrolling parts of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge where wildfires had forced evacuations of both towns – all of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, according to the city manager of Pigeon Forge.

10. Last Word: Ford Rumors, School Plans and Harwell Survives In State House -

If the Friday after Thanksgiving is “Black Friday” what is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving? You know, the day many of us are scurrying about with our hair on fire to get everything done so we can legitimately claim that we will absolutely not be a part of the Black Friday mob whose hair is also alight.

11. Harwell Learning How to Dodge Challengers -

Beth Harwell has been called a lot of things over the last few years, “trailblazer” chief among them as Tennessee’s first female House speaker. 

Now she’s a “survivor” after eking out a Republican Caucus victory as speaker nominee to continue leading the lower chamber in the 110th General Assembly.

12. Calming Halftime Helps Save a Season -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones went from goat to hero in a matter of hours last Saturday.

The Vols trailed Florida 21-0 in the first half – and 21-3 at halftime – and appeared headed to their 12th consecutive loss to the Gators.

13. TPA Recognizes House Speaker for Open Government Efforts -

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (AP) – State House Speaker Beth Harwell and two other state lawmakers have been honored for their support of open government in Tennessee.

14. Tennessee Leads the Nation in Bankruptcies -

Tennessee has a model program for financial literacy in its public schools. All high school students must pass a personal finance course to graduate, and even kindergartners are learning about money under a new initiative to extend the curriculum to primary school.

15. Tennessee Senate Speaker Ramsey Announces He Won't Run Again -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey, a leading figure in the Republican takeover of all three branches of Tennessee state government, announced Wednesday that he won't run for re-election.

16. Bid to Hike Tennessee Smoking Age to 21 Snuffed Out in House -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – An effort to raise Tennessee's smoking age from 18 to 21 has been defeated in the state House.

The bill sponsored by Republican Rep. Bob Ramsey of Maryville failed to receive a motion in the House Agriculture Committee on Tuesday.

17. Corker Says Visa Waivers a Bigger Risk Than Refugees -

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker says he believes the nation needs to stop admitting Syrian refugees until security problems are solved, but the nation’s “bigger risk” in letting terrorists slip into the country lies with the nation’s Visa Waiver Program.

18. Raise Gas Tax or Borrow? How to Fund Road Projects -

Tennessee has an $8 billion backlog of transportation projects and not enough funds to pay for them, largely because the state gas tax, which funds those projects, hasn’t been increased in 26 years.

19. Preseason Analysis: Vols Will Defeat Oklahoma, Finish 8-4 -

Tennessee’s football team has something to prove as it concludes the first week of preseason practices and moves forward to the 2015 season.

The Vols must prove they belong in the national picture in Butch Jones’ third year as coach.

20. Ramsey Clear in Push to Politicize Supreme Court -

Republican Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey has a penchant for igniting flames of partisanship, and the retirement of Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Gary Wade is no exception.

21. Southern Heritage Defined Differently Across Tennessee -

Tennessee’s loyalty was divided in the Civil War, and 150 years later, little is changed as the debate over Confederate symbols arises in the wake of the racist-fueled South Carolina church massacre.

22. Capitol Commission to Review Which Historical Figures Should Be Honored -

Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey and House Speaker Beth Harwell are encouraging the Tennessee Capitol Commission to evaluate the characteristics of Tennesseans honored in the Capitol Complex.

23. Ramsey: No Medicaid Expansion Until 2017 -

The Tennessee legislative session ended in late April, giving itself a little more than two and a-half months to handle the state’s business. That’s plenty of time, according to Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey.

24. Tennessee Joins Multistate Lawsuit Over Immigration -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee is joining a multistate lawsuit seeking to halt President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration, state Attorney General Herbert Slatery announced Monday.

25. New Chief Justice Echoes Haslam Mantra on Review -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – First, the state Supreme Court hired Gov. Bill Haslam's top legal adviser as Tennessee's next attorney general. Now the high court's new chief justice is also adopting the Republican governor's rhetoric.

26. Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper to Seek Another Term -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper announced Monday he will seek another eight-year term after three Democrats were retained on the Supreme Court.

27. Senate Defeats Proposal to Elect Attorney General -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The Senate on Wednesday defeated an effort to change the Tennessee constitution to require the popular election of the attorney general.

The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet received 15 votes in favor and 14 votes against. Proposals need at least 17 votes – a majority of the 33-member chamber – to pass.

28. Hats in the Ring -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam will be seeking a second term as governor, and U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander will be running for re-election – both starting with the Aug. 7 statewide primaries that open for filing Friday, Jan. 3.

29. Democrats Hit Speaker Ramsey Over Obama Tweet -

NASHVILLE (AP) – State Democrats are criticizing Republican Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey over a Twitter post that said President Barack Obama was trying to become an ally with al-Qaida in Syria.

30. Senate Votes to Block Access to Gun Carry Records -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Before last year's elections, the Senate Republican Caucus obtained a copy of the entire database of handgun carry permit holders in Tennessee. On Wednesday, the GOP-controlled chamber voted to block public access to those records.

31. Renewed Bid Would Dilute Tennessee Open Meetings Law -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A renewed push is under way to get Tennessee lawmakers to allow local official to hold more closed-door meetings.

Williamson County Commissioner Bob Barnwell, who also spearheaded a similar attempt last year, has written to local government colleagues around the state urging them to encourage state lawmakers to pass a bill to allow private meetings among officials as long as a quorum isn't present.

32. Jobs Push Made for State’s Veterans -

Hundreds of thousands of veterans will be coming home in the near future, as the U.S. downsizes its presence in the Middle East.

Many of those veterans will need jobs. And employers across Tennessee, with help from state government, are going on a major hiring push to put them to work.

33. Lobbyist Email Sent From Committee Chair's Account -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A lobbyist has used a House chairman's email to urge lawmakers to vote against a bill to tax roll-your-own cigarettes.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that the email was sent from the email account of Republican Rep. Bob Ramsey of Maryville, the chairman of the House State and Local Government Committee.

34. Tenn. Lawmakers Join Opposition to Obama Health Care Bill -

A group of Tennessee lawmakers are joining their counterparts from around the country in registering with the U.S. Supreme Court their opposition to President Barack Obama’s signature domestic legislation, the health care reform bill.

35. Whitehead Promoted At Obsidian -

Thomas Whitehead has been promoted to account manager at Obsidian Public Relations.

Hometown: Brandon, Miss.

36. Ramsey Rules Out Challenge of US Sen. Bob Corker -

NASHVILLE (AP) – State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey, the candidate most aligned with the tea party movement in last year's gubernatorial campaign, is ruling out a bid for the U.S. Senate.

37. Lighting the Fuse -

Memphis voters have 22 words to weigh as they decide what is to become of Shelby County’s two public school systems.
“Shall the administration of the Memphis City School System, a special school district, be transferred to the Shelby County Board of Education?”
The words seem inadequate to cover what a “yes” or a “no” vote means after a state law and other factors changed the terms of a vote already scheduled for March 8.
Voters for schools consolidation may be against special schools district status but for letting some of the six suburban towns and cities try to go with their own municipal school system.
Voters may be against school consolidation and against special school district status if it includes taxing authority for the county school board, albeit with tax approval required by the Tennessee Legislature.
Some voters may see it as a way of ending reforms driven by MCS superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash. Others may see it as a way of ending Shelby County Schools board chairman David Pickler’s dominance of that school system.
School consolidation advocates are still urging citizens to vote “yes” and school consolidation opponents are still urging citizens to vote “no.”
“The lay of the land has changed, so will people consider the lay of the land or what? That statement stands. It’s on the ballot and everyone knows what it’s designed to do,” said Memphis City Council chairman Myron Lowery. “This occurred after the question was put on the ballot. If someone wants to make that stretch, they’re jumping over a lot of hurdles. This was not in place when this was put on the ballot.”
Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr., along with Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell, sought a transition period even as political positions began to harden. He doesn’t see what’s in the law as a transition period.
“The way it’s structured, there’s every incentive not to reach an agreement. It looks to me like it falls off the face of the earth,” Wharton said. “There was nothing in there that states where do you go if at the end of this (the planning process) there is nothing resolved.”
State Sen. Mark Norris, R-Collierville, disagrees.
“The state has a compelling interest in assuring that the administration of schools is properly discharged,” Norris wrote in an op-ed piece for The Memphis News last week. “To do otherwise defies common sense and common decency.”
Pickler said if voters approve the question, he will quickly move to assemble a team to work on the transition. It’s a transition that Pickler has always emphasized will be controlled by the county school system. That is one point on which the attorneys seem to agree.
“Clearly we understand that this issue is not about educational outcomes,” he said during a WKNO forum last week. “We still do not believe that creating a mega district … doesn’t do anything to improve education.”
MCS board member Tomeka Hart, at the same forum, countered “We do here as an economic issue,” a reference to the University of Memphis study showing special schools district status could cost MCS half of the county property tax base it relies on for funding. “It’s time to rewrite all of this,” Hart concluded.
Here is the timeline – to date – of the ongoing schools showdown:

38. Top Haslam Aide Praised for Bipartisan Approach -

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) – Gov.-elect Bill Haslam's newly named chief of staff Claude Ramsey has some words of caution for Tennessee Republicans celebrating their new high water mark in state politics: Tides can turn quickly.

39. Bill Clinton to Campaign for McWherter in Tenn. -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Democrats are gearing up for a visit from former President Bill Clinton to campaign Thursday for gubernatorial candidate Mike McWherter in Nashville.

40. McWherter Steps up Governor’s Race Efforts -

The race for Tennessee governor moves into full view locally now that the county primaries have been decided.

Mike McWherter, the only major candidate for governor among the Democrats, has campaigned differently in Shelby County.

41. Sponsor of 'Health Freedom Act' Disputes AG Cost -

NASHVILLE (AP) — The sponsor of a proposal to allow Tennesseans to opt out of a new federal health care law said Wednesday that there shouldn't be a cost for legal action by the state's attorney general.

42. Frist, Corker Urge Civility in Tenn. Governor’s Race -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Two veterans of some of Tennessee’s more fierce Republican primaries have some advice for the three Republican gubernatorial candidates as they head into the last 100 days of the nomination fight: Keep it civil.

43. Bill Would Give Governor Control on Outside Lawyer -

NASHVILLE (AP) - The Tennessee governor could decide to hire an outside attorney without the consent of the attorney general under a bill advancing in the Senate.

The measure sponsored by Republican Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey, a gubernatorial candidate and a vocal critic of the new federal health care law, was unanimously approved by the State and Local Government Committee on Wednesday.

44. Senate Votes to Urge AG to Join Health Lawsuit -

NASHVILLE (AP) - The state Senate has voted 21-7 to pass a resolution urging the Tennessee attorney general to join states challenging the constitutionality of the federal health care overhaul.

45. Debate Sparks Over Tenn.’s Role In Health Reform -

Tennessee’s attorney general doesn’t think it’s possible. Gov. Phil Bredesen is against it.

But last week, Lt. Gov. and Republican candidate for governor Ron Ramsey claimed the political spotlight on the issue of whether Tennessee should challenge the national health care reform act.

46. Ramsey: Tenn. Could Hire Lawyer if AG Won't Sue -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Senate speaker and Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron Ramsey says he would consider hiring an independent counsel if state Attorney General Bob Cooper refuses to file a lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of a federal health overhaul.

47. Tenn. Senate Votes to Reject Health Care Mandate -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The Tennessee Senate on Wednesday passed a bill to require the state attorney general to mount a legal challenge to any federal law to require participation in a health care system.

48. Wamp Heads to Ala. for Gubernatorial Fundraiser -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee gubernatorial candidate Zach Wamp is headed to neighboring Alabama for a campaign fundraiser.

The $500-per-ticket Wamp fundraiser scheduled for Monday in Huntsville features Alabama Gov. Bob Riley.

49. Underground Hall Dedicated at Tenn. Gov's Mansion -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Gov. Phil Bredesen and other elected officials are dedicating a new underground meeting hall at the governor's mansion in Nashville.

Among those scheduled to join the Democratic governor at the Thursday evening event were Republican U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, former Gov. Winfield Dunn and several state lawmakers.

50. Wamp, Ramsey: Gubernatorial Primary Unlike 2006 -

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey and U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp both consider themselves the main challenger to Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam for Tennessee's gubernatorial nomination. And yet they spend a lot of their time preoccupied with each other.

51. LLC Donations Boon to Haslam, Ramsey Campaigns -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Special rules in Tennessee campaign finance laws for limited liability companies are providing a boost for two Republican gubernatorial candidates.

Under state law, corporations are barred from making campaign contributions. But that ban does not extend to LLCs, as long as they are not created for the sole purpose of making a donation.

52. Ramsey at Odds with Alexander on Sotomayor Vote -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey on Friday became the first Republican gubernatorial candidate to speak out against U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander's vote in favor of President Barack Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

53. Gov. Candidates Raise Big Money In Bad Economy -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Two top candidates for Tennessee’s Republican gubernatorial nomination say they expect to report large fundraising totals despite the poor economy.

For the six-month period that ended midnight Tuesday, Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam’s campaign said he expects to report raising about $3.8 million, while U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp of Chattanooga said he will come in at about $1.2 million.

54. Ramsey’s Entry Marks New Phase In Governor’s Race -

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (AP) – State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey’s entry Monday into the Tennessee governor’s race marks a new phase of an arduous – and expensive – Republican primary campaign.

55. Wamp Sniffs Around in Gibbons’ Backyard -

“I’m a heat-seeking missile,” Zach Wamp told about 100 Republicans in Collierville this week.

Wamp’s Monday stop at the Fino Villa restaurant was at the end of the first day of another two-day campaign swing through Shelby County’s suburban towns and cities.

56. Rival Bills Advancing on Tenn. Judicial Selection -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee Supreme Court justices could be challenged in re-election campaigns under a proposal advanced by a Senate panel on Wednesday. But House leaders are voicing support for a rival measure with a more limited scope.

57. Ford on Governor’s Race: ‘Not the Right Time’ -

As he passed on the 2010 governor’s race this week, former U.S. Rep. Harold Ford Jr. took a swipe at the already massed and mostly active Republican field for governor.

58. Ford Won't Run For Governor In 2010 -

Former Memphis Congressman Harold Ford Jr. announced Monday he will not be a candidate in the 2010 Democratic primary for governor.

59. Ford Won't Run For Governor In 2010 -

Former Memphis Congressman Harold Ford Jr. announced today he will not be a candidate in the 2010 Democratic primary for governor.

60. AG Opines Effect of Judge Selection Law -

Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper said there could not be an election for appellate judges in either 2010 or 2014 if Tennessee’s current method for selecting appeal judges and Supreme Court justices is scrapped.

61. GOP Governor Contenders Line Up Campaign Teams -

Three of the four Republican contenders for Tennessee governor in 2010 have announced key members of their campaign teams in the past week.

The campaign positions aren’t high-profile, but those who fill the jobs are important because their influence and knowledge of how to run a statewide campaign will play a large role in how the candidates are able to get their respective messages to voters.

62. Wamp Announces Top Gubernatorial Campaign Staff -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp has named former state Republican Party Chairman Bob Davis as his gubernatorial campaign chairman.

63. AIG Looking at Alternatives for Government Loan -

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Beleaguered insurer American International Group Inc. is apparently asking for its fourth loan from the federal government just days before it is expected to report a fourth-quarter loss.

64. GOP Rejects Kurita's Secretary of State Bid -

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey says Republican leaders are not supportive of former Democratic Sen. Rosalind Kurita's bid to become Tennessee's secretary of state.

65. Tennessee Voters Must Be in Line By Closing Time -

Polls in Tennessee opened Tuesday to bright, sunny skies and long lines of voters waiting to cast ballots in what election officials expect to be a record turnout.

The advice to voters was this: Get in line before the polls close or you won't get in the door.

66. Poll: Frist Has Wide Name Recognition in Tenn. -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Potential Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Frist is known to more than nine in 10 Tennessee voters, according to a poll released Tuesday.

The Mason-Dixon poll commissioned by the Chattanooga Times Free Press found that 93 percent of respondents were familiar with the former Senate majority leader's name, and that 58 percent view him favorably.

67. House Speaker Pro Tem Lois DeBerry Tops 2007 Per Diem List -

NASHVILLE (AP) - House Speaker Pro Tempore Lois DeBerry received $31,967 in "per diem" payments last year, more than any other state lawmaker, according to a review of 2007 legislative expense payments.

68. Measure Supporting Popular Election of Lt. Governor Advances -

NASHVILLE (AP) - A resolution that would change the state constitution to allow voters to elect both the lieutenant governor and the secretary of state narrowly passed a key Senate committee.

69. Prestidge Chosen to Head Kroger Delta Division -

Mark Prestidge has been promoted to president of The Kroger Co.'s Delta Division. The Delta Division is based in Memphis and includes 111 Kroger stores in Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. Prestidge succeeds Richard Tillman, who recently announced his retirement after a 42-year career with Kroger. Prestidge previously served as vice president of operations for Kroger's Southwest Division.

70. Archived Article: Events - The Small Business Innovative Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs outreach tour comes to Memphis from 8 a

The Memphis Regional Chamber presents Business After Hours from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. today at Holiday Inn Select, 5795 P...