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Editorial Results (free)

1. Last Word: Corporate Musical Chairs, Another Dollar General and Ronnie Grisanti -

The three-way deal by which Memphis-based Fred’s was to buy hundreds of Rite-Aid stores from Walgreens just keeps getting worse for Fred’s even though the deal happened last week without Fred’s. An analyst says Fred’s got cut out because of questions about the corporation’s viability to enter into what is an ambitious change of course for the company on a large scale.

2. Green Drops Gubernatorial Bid After Failed Trump Nomination -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican state Sen. Mark Green announced Friday that he will not resume his bid for Tennessee governor after withdrawing from consideration as President Donald Trump's pick for Army secretary.

3. Telecom Lobbying Muscle Kills Privacy Rules -

NEW YORK (AP) – The telecom industry's lobbying muscle pushed a consumer privacy measure to a swift death in Congress.

Republicans struck down Obama-era rules that would have imposed tight restrictions on what broadband companies such as Verizon, AT&T and Comcast could do with their customers' personal data. Digital-rights and consumer-advocacy groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation supported keeping the rules. But they were outmatched by telecom trade groups and lobbyists.

4. Norris Plans White House Trip To Discuss Refugee Resettlement -

NASHVILLE – State Sen. Mark Norris is planning a White House visit to discuss the direction of refugee resettlement despite a federal judge’s ruling blocking President Trump’s immigration and refugee moratorium.

5. For What’s Bugging You -

LOCKED AND SEASONED. I have armed myself. A while back, I was at a friend and colleague’s house in Rossville, a popular place for the Second Amendment.

We were brainstorming a project we’re both involved in when he spotted a fly – several, in fact. He picked up a pump gun and both of his dogs jumped up – they are, after all, hunting dogs – and started running around the room. He stood, slide cocking the weapon, releasing the safety and looking down the barrel through the pop-up site.

6. Alexander Proposes Expansion of Shiloh -

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander has proposed an expansion of Shiloh National Military Park to include three other Civil War battlefields in West Tennessee and North Mississippi.

Alexander’s bill would also designate Parker’s Crossroads as an affiliated area of the National Park System. That Civil War site between Nashville and Memphis, in Henderson County, is a state-owned park.

7. Alexander Proposes Expansion of Shiloh -

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander has proposed an expansion of Shiloh National Military Park to include three other Civil War battlefields in West Tennessee and North Mississippi.

Alexander’s bill would also designate Parker’s Crossroads as an affiliated area of the National Park System. That Civil War site between Nashville and Memphis, in Henderson County, is a state-owned park.

8. Last Word: Boca, Poe Killed by Politics and Embedding In The Real Memphis -

BOCA BOWL – As expected, the University of Memphis Tigers football team is going south for the post season. They got and accepted Sunday the formal invitation to play in the Boca Raton Bowl on Dec. 20 against Western Kentucky. Ticket information should be forthcoming Monday for those of you who didn’t get enough during the Emerald Coast Classic with the basketball Tigers not too long ago.

9. US House Votes to Name Courthouse After Fred Thompson -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The U.S. House has voted to name the new federal courthouse in Nashville after the late actor-politician Fred Thompson.

10. Norris, Others Take Next Step After Election -

State Senate Republican leader Mark Norris of Collierville ran for re-election this year the way just about any incumbent prefers to run – unopposed.

11. Tennessee Rep. Blackburn Named to Trump Transition Panel -

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn has been named to the 16-member executive committee of President-elect Donald Trump's transition team.

12. Kustoff Victory Caps TV, Outsider Heavy Congressional Campaign -

Former U.S. Attorney David Kustoff claimed the Republican nomination for Tennessee’s 8th Congressional district Thursday, Aug. 4, in a 15-county contest in which the eastern parts of Shelby County played a decisive role.

13. Outnumbered Democrats Hope To Ride Anti-Trumpmentum -

State Rep. Raumesh Akbari identified herself with the “Fighting 26,” also known as the Tennessee House Democratic Caucus, when she took the podium to support Hillary Clinton at Philadelphia’s Democratic National Convention.

14. Kustoff Opens Congressional Bid With 15 Stops -

Former U.S. Attorney David Kustoff began his campaign for Congress Monday, April 11, with stops in Tipton County and Fayette County as well as East Memphis.

15. Contenders Emerge for Fincher’s Seat -

The line for the 8th Congressional District seat began forming within half an hour of incumbent Stephen Fincher’s announcement Monday, Feb. 1, that he would not seek re-election in the August primaries.

16. Congress Revives Bill for Women’s History Museum -

Citing history textbooks, national parks and landmarks that mostly leave women out, lawmakers Wednesday are reviving a long-stalled effort to create a National Women’s History Museum in the nation’s capital.

17. Health Insurers: Payment Rates Above 80 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Top health insurance companies told members of Congress Wednesday that more than 80 percent of people who've signed up under the president's new health care law have gone on to pay their premiums – a necessary step for the enrollment figures touted by the Obama administration to hold up.

18. Congress Considers Bill for Women's History Museum -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Citing history textbooks, national parks and landmarks that mostly leave women out, lawmakers Wednesday are reviving a long-stalled effort to create a National Women's History Museum in the nation's capital.

19. Chris Christie to Keynote Tenn. GOP fundraiser -

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is scheduled to headline the Tennessee Republican Party’s annual fundraiser on May 30.

State Republican Party Chairman Chris Devaney said the appearance will give voters a chance to form their own impressions about Christie as he considers a presidential bid.

20. Chris Christie to Keynote Tennessee GOP fundraiser -

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is scheduled to headline the Tennessee Republican Party’s annual fundraiser on May 30.

State Republican Party Chairman Chris Devaney said the appearance will give voters a chance to form their own impressions about Christie as he considers a presidential bid.

21. Ex-Senate Staffer Appears in Court on Porn Charges -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The fired chief of staff for Sen. Lamar Alexander made his first court appearance Thursday on charges of possession and distribution of child pornography.

Ryan Loskarn answered softly, "Yes, sir," when U.S. Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola asked Loskarn whether he understood that he was charged with serious offenses.

22. New Security Issues Surface as Sebelius Testifies -

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Barack Obama's embattled top health official declared herself accountable Wednesday for failures of the much-maligned health insurance website as a newly surfaced government memo pointed to security concerns that were laid out just days before its launch.

23. Business Leaders Make Case for Immigration Reform -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Prominent business leaders and Republicans held a forum in Nashville on Wednesday to build support for immigration reform among the public and members of Congress.

The Senate passed a far-reaching immigration measure in June that includes border security, workplace enforcement and a path to citizenship. But the majority of House Republicans remain opposed to any path to citizenship, creating concerns that legislators will be unable to craft a compromise bill.

24. Medical Supply Program Facing Delays, Scrutiny -

Less than a week before an effort to rein in billions of dollars in Medicare spending on home medical equipment is set to kick in, members of Congress and medical supply programs are pushing to delay the plan, saying some of the process has been mishandled and that the process lacks transparency.

25. Stanley Named to Economic Council on Women -

Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey has announced the appointment of Kristi Pruitt Stanley to the Tennessee Economic Council on Women.

26. Gibson Guitar Deal a Contrast With Earlier Stance -

The deal Gibson Guitar Corp. and federal prosecutors said they reached this week to drop a criminal case against the Tennessee-based guitar maker represents a sharp reversal from the combative stance Gibson took publicly last year.

27. 3 Congress Members Paid Salaries to Relatives -

A study by a Washington-based nonprofit found that three Tennessee Congress members used campaign money to pay salaries to their relatives.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports that the three were among 82 members whose families benefited from their positions in government over the past two election cycles.

28. Cohen Concerned Over Redistricting -

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Memphis, got a closer look over the weekend at the proposed set of new district lines for his congressional district.

29. Cohen Expresses Concern Over Redistricting -

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Memphis, got a closer look over the weekend at the proposed set of new district lines for his congressional district.

30. GOP Redistricting Plan Changes Shelby Representation in D.C. -

The Republican leaders of the Tennessee legislature on Friday, Jan. 6, rolled out their second redistricting proposal in as many days.

The day after outlining their plan to redraw district lines in the Tennessee House and Tennessee Senate, the leadership of both chambers unveiled their proposal for redrawing district lines for the state’s nine federal Congressional districts.

31. Blackburn Urges Gifts of Incandescent Bulbs -

Tennessee U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn says she’s stuffing stockings with a bright present this year: the kind of light bulbs that are due to be phased out next year.

32. Sen. Lamar Alexander Names New Chief of Staff -

NASHVILLE (AP) – U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander has named a new chief of staff.

The Tennessee Republican announced on Wednesday that Ryan Loskarn will succeed Matt Sonnesyn, who is leaving to pursue private business interests.

33. Cooper, Blackburn Seek Changes to Illegal Wood Law -

U.S. Reps. Jim Cooper and Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee are introducing federal legislation seeking to quell fears among owners of musical instruments that they could be subject to prosecution under a law that has led to raids of Nashville-based Gibson Guitar Corp.’s Nashville and Memphis factories.

34. Striking a Chord -

When Texas Gov. and current Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry came to Memphis two weeks ago for a fundraiser at Memphis Botanic Garden, he didn’t immediately head to the microphone after Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey introduced him.

35. Gibson Guitar CEO Defends Company Amid US Probe -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The head of Gibson Guitar said Saturday that he strongly backs conservation as well as federal enforcement of laws meant to protect the tropical hardwoods that his company uses for instruments.

36. Feds Won't Target Unwitting Owners of Illegal Wood -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Federal officials say that people who unknowingly possess musical instruments made with illegal wood products do not face prosecution.

In a letter to Republican U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, officials with the U.S. Justice Department and the Interior Department say enforcement efforts are focused on those "removing protected species from the wild and making a profit by trafficking in them."

37. Feds Still Mum on Reason for Gibson Raids -

Federal officials have shed a little light on last month’s raid of Gibson Guitar Corp. facilities in Memphis and Nashville – but not too much.

38. Feds Still Mum on Reason for Gibson Raids -

Federal officials have shed a little light on last month’s raid of Gibson Guitar Corp. facilities in Memphis and Nashville – without really revealing much at all.

39. Gibson Guitar Chief Says Feds Want to Talk -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Federal officials have asked to meet next week with owners of Nashville-based Gibson Guitars following a raid last month, the company's CEO says.

Henry Juszkiewicz (JUS'-kuh-wits) said the Justice Department requested the meeting for Wednesday, according to The Tennessean.

40. Artists, Politicians Weigh in on Gibson Raids -

British singer-songwriter James Blunt has filmed a brief video of himself praising Gibson Guitar Corp., the embattled guitar maker whose Memphis and Nashville facilities were raided last month by federal agents.

41. Gibson Guitar CEO to Join Blackburn for Obama Address -

Gibson Guitar CEO Henry Juszkiewicz will be the special guest of U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn at President Barack Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress Thursday night, Sept. 8.

42. Cohen Votes No, Others OK Debt-Ceiling Act -

Two of the three congressmen and both U.S. senators who represent Memphis and Shelby County voted for the Budget Control Act of 2011.

All said the act, which raises the debt ceiling, is far from perfect.

43. Budget Battle -

They may not agree on what medicine to administer to the still ailing economy or how to shrink the nation’s budget deficit.

But area legislators and financial service professionals agree on at least one thing: a major battle is coming down the pike in a matter of weeks, one whose outcome could affect everything from interest rates to the unemployment rate to whether the nation plunges into another recession.

44. Republican Delegation Splits on Funding Fed Government -

There were different opinions on the six-month continuing resolutions approved by Congress last week among Republicans in the Tennessee delegation to Washington.

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander said passage of the bill will “turn the spending train around and head it in the right direction.”

45. Lawmakers Try to Balance Safety With Public Access -

Congress’ chief law enforcement officers are briefing lawmakers on security issues as politicians struggle to balance safety concerns with an open democracy.

House Republicans said that Sergeant-at-Arms Bill Livingood offered practical security advice Wednesday, such as coordinating with local authorities when they hold public events in their districts.

46. CNBC Goes Local With FedEx Broadcast -

It was a Memphis morning on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” program Monday, with FedEx founder Fred Smith guest hosting the show’s broadcast from Hangar 26 at FedEx’s SuperHub at Memphis International Airport.

47. Split Vote Takes Down Metro Charter Proposal -

The metro consolidation charter won a narrow victory with Memphis voters Tuesday but was crushed by Shelby County voters outside Memphis.

The first consolidation charter to go to voters in 39 years had to win both in Memphis and outside Memphis in order to consolidate the city of Memphis and Shelby County governments.

48. Election Guide 2010 -

A rundown of the key issues and races that voters will decide when they go to the ballot  for early voting through Oct. 28 or on Election Day, Nov. 2.


Tennessee voters choose a successor to Gov. Phil Bredesen in the Nov. 2 elections. Here’s a summary of where Democratic nominee Mike McWherter and Republican nominee Bill Haslam stand on the major issues:

49. Blackburn Hears Conservative Concerns at Town Hall -

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn heard a lot this week in Bartlett about conservative hopes for a Republican majority in both houses of Congress with the Nov. 2 congressional midterm elections.

50. Political, Business Leaders Present Plans to Jolt Economy -

Memphis audiences are getting an earful from businessmen and politicians who want to be seen as modern-day Paul Reveres, sounding alarm bells about taxes, the fragile economy and what’s in store for corporate America.

51. Lawmakers Debate New Wall St. Rules -

The summer reading season is now in full swing, which can mean anything from a person tearing through the latest James Patterson thriller or curling up with a selection from classic literature they’ve always meant to finish.

52. Cohen, Herenton Hit Campaign Trail on Separate Tracks -

In a Raleigh pizza parlor last week, Willie Herenton was in classroom mode as he talked to a group of 50 members of a Frayser-Raleigh civic group.

“Somebody answer me. We’re in school here tonight,” he said to the group “The Voice of Raleigh and Frayser” – the latest stop in Herenton’s challenge of Democratic congressional incumbent Steve Cohen in the Aug. 5 primaries.

53. At Spill Hearing, BP CEO Says He's 'Deeply Sorry' -

WASHINGTON (AP) - Chastened by heavy criticism from lawmakers, a grim-faced BP chief executive Tony Hayward said Thursday he was "deeply sorry" for his company's catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

54. Filing Deadline Hits for August Primaries -

The stage is set for the county’s most anticipated political showdown in the Aug. 5 state and federal primary elections.

Noon today is the deadline for candidates in the primaries, as well as those vying for nonpartisan seats on the Shelby County school board and the three judicial positions, to file their qualifying petitions for the ballot.

55. House GOP Leader Taps 4 for Health Summit -

WASHINGTON (AP) - The House Republican leader has made his picks for President Barack Obama's health care summit.

Rep. John Boehner of Ohio on Wednesday tapped Charles Boustany of Louisiana, a surgeon; Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, Peter Roskam of Illinois and Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

56. Where is "Tea Party" Heading? Leaves Are Unclear -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The "tea party" activists all agree: Government is too big. Spending is out of control. Individual freedom is at risk. And President Barack Obama's policies are making it all worse.

57. Somerville Post Office to be Named after Wilder -

SOMERVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A bill to rename the Somerville post office after former Tennessee Lt. Gov. John Wilder has cleared its final legislative hurdle by passing the U.S. Senate.

58. GOP Victories, Health Care Battle Show Party’s Pulse -

“Every day that we delay them moving to the floor with this bill is a very, very good thing.”

Those are the words of U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, a congressional Republican whose district includes part of Shelby County. She was speaking with The Daily News about her party’s efforts to thwart the health care reform plan that’s become President Barack Obama’s biggest domestic priority.

59. Outspoken Congressman Fan of Blackburn -

U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, the South Carolina Republican who dramatically yelled “You lie!” at one point during President Barack Obama’s health care address to a joint session of Congress Wednesday night, is a big fan of a Shelby County lawmaker.

60. Events -

The Liberty National Life Insurance Co. will hold a “We’re Hiring” event today at Hilton Memphis, 939 Ridge Lake Blvd., and Holiday Inn Select East, 5795 Poplar Ave. Interview times will be 9 a.m., noon, 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. For more information, visit www.lnlcareers.com.

61. Kelsey Frontrunner After Rivals Quit Race For Stanley’s Seat -

State Rep. Brian Kelsey appears to be the last man standing among the candidates who have lined up to replace former State Sen. Paul Stanley, who resigned this month in the wake of an intern sex scandal.

62. Update: Kelsey Frontrunner After Rivals Quit Race for Stanley’s Seat -  

State Rep. Brian Kelsey appears to be the last man standing among the candidates who have lined up to replace former State Sen. Paul Stanley, who resigned this month in the wake of an intern sex scandal.

Meanwhile, Shelby County Commissioners decided Monday that they will not fill the vacancy prior to the upcoming special State Senate election.

State Rep. Steve McManus – whose House District 96 covers parts of Cordova and Germantown – has decided against running in a special election for Stanley’s seat. He made that decision over the weekend.

Kelsey, whose campaign went door-knocking in District 31 over the weekend and has signs for his candidacy displayed prominently in the area, has been pressing McManus to answer the same question others have wanted to know.

“I talked to Kelsey not too long ago, and he’s like, ‘Are you running, McManus?’” McManus told The Daily News. “I told him, ‘Kelsey, I’ll be honest with you, I’m really happy in the House.”

That decision follows Shelby County School Board chairman David Pickler’s announcement in the past few days that he, too, is happy with his current job and won’t be running.

McManus’ decision appears to clear the way for Kelsey, who will run in the special election that likely will be held in December for Stanley’s seat. Democratic and Republican primaries for the seat will be held in October, and Shelby County Democratic Party chairman Van Turner has said the party will field a nominee for that primary.

McManus told The Daily News he’d like to run for U.S. Congress down the road if the 7th Congressional District is redrawn after the 2010 Census in such a way that it's tilted more towards Shelby County. That seat currently is held by U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, and the district stretches from the outskirts of Shelby County to the fringe of Nashville.

“The next run I would love to be a part of is a congressional run,” McManus said. “I don’t know what’s going to happen next year when they redraw these lines, but if the Republicans win it next year, our congressional District 7 could be much more of a Shelby County District. In that case, I would certainly run for U.S. Congress then.”


63. Events -

The Mid-South Area Business Travel Association will hold its monthly luncheon today from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Select East Memphis, 5795 Poplar Ave. Emily Capadalis of First Tennessee Bank’s Private Client Financial Services Division will speak. Cost is $25 for members and $40 for guests. For more information, visit www.msabta.com.

64. Events -

Talk Shoppe will present “Getting Started Right in Real Estate Investment” today from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South, 3693 Tyndale Drive. For more information, call Jo Garner at 482-0354.

65. Commission To Foster Ties Between Memphis, Berlin -

The Shelby County Commission is likely to give its support today to a resolution encouraging a budding film industry alliance between Memphis and Berlin spurred by Memphis Film Commissioner Linn Sitler.

66. University Professor Announces Bid for Tenn. House Seat -

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - An Austin Peay State University assistant professor has announced he will run next year as a Democrat for the seat held by Republican U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn.

67. Tenn. Protesters Rally Against Government Spending -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Protesters in Tennessee joined others across the country upset about government spending since President Barack Obama took office.

Several Republican lawmakers – including U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn – joined hundreds of protesters who stood shoulder to shoulder in a block radius across from the state Capitol Wednesday.

68. Farmers Worry About Proposed Legislation -

Some Mid-South farmers who sell their products directly to consumers worry that a food safety bill in Congress could put them out of business if enacted into law.

U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., has introduced legislation that would divide the responsibilities of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and put food under the purview of the Department of Health and Human Services, which would have more stringent guidelines. The legislation is HR 875 or the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009.

69. Blackburn to Make Area Appearances -

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., will be signing copies of her new book “Life Equity” Friday from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Books-a-Million, 135 Town Square Blvd. in Southaven.

70. Details Emerge in Stanford Fraud Case -

Word of the $50 billion Ponzi scheme perpetrated by a New York businessman was still a hot topic in the investment community when a note to depositors appeared on Stanford International Bank’s Web site.

71. FEC Dismisses Complaint Against Blackburn -

The Federal Election Commission has dismissed a campaign finance complaint against U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn.

72. Kustoff to Run Gibbons’ Gubernatorial Campaign -

Former U.S. Attorney David Kustoff will manage Bill Gibbons’ bid for governor.

73. Bank: Error Led to Blackburn's Home Foreclosure -

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (AP) - Bank officials say Republican U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn's home in Brentwood was placed into foreclosure proceedings because of a processing error.

74. Democrats Begin New Session with Labor Bills -

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Democratic-led House took up two wage discrimination bills Friday, moving quickly to affirm its worker rights credentials as labor ally Barack Obama prepares to move into the White House.

75. Small-Pharmacy Owners Urge Changes -

The third of the month is one of the busiest days for Super Drugs in Somerville, but owner Whit Middlecoff set aside time Wednesday afternoon to talk to U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn about government policies that cause hardships for his small business.

76. Troubled Lenders Give Money To Legislators -

As a cascade of dramatic events has rocked the very foundations of Wall Street over the past several months, money continued to flow from the country’s financial sector to many of the lawmakers deciding the future of the marketplace.

77. Blackburn Outraged At AIG Spending -

U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., fired off an angry letter to U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson this week after the revelation emerged from congressional hearings that executives of AIG spent almost $444,000 on a weekend golfing retreat.

78. Presidential Debate a Who’s Who of Tennessee Pols -

Its setting was the geographic center of Tennessee’s political universe.

And at Belmont University in Nashville for this week’s second of three highly anticipated presidential debates, it was probably natural the spotlight would turn to the Tennesseans on hand who normally are fixtures in state and federal halls of power.

79. 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.

80. Area Reps. Split on Bailout Bill -

The Memphis area’s three U.S. representatives split along party lines in Monday’s House vote killing a $700 billion financial bailout bill.

Democratic Reps. Steve Cohen of Memphis and John Tanner of Union City voted for the plan. Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Franklin voted no.

81. Homeland Security Grant To Protect MLGW Substations -

A $2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is on its way to Shelby County, a grant that’s intended to be used to protect Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division electrical substations from earthquakes.

82. Cohen, Blackburn Lead Local Election Winners -

More than half and possibly as much as 75 percent of Shelby County’s nearly 626,000 voters are expected to turn out for the Nov. 4 election that will be highlighted by the John McCain-Barack Obama battle for the White House.

83. Cohen Crushes Tinker - Jackson Upsets Turner - Charter Changes Pass-Fail - Democratic Congressman Steve Cohen was the big winner in Thursday’s primary elections. Cohen, with 80 percent of the vote, crushed challenger Nikki Tinker in the hard fought 9th District Democratic primary.

The upset of the evening was the general election contest for General Sessions Court Clerk where Democratic challenger Otis Jackson beat Republican incumbent Chris Turner.

And only one of two sets of Shelby County charter amendments on the ballot were approved by voters.

Voter turnout was just under 16 percent in Shelby County. Voter turnout was clearly driven by the 9th District Democratic primary. More people voted in that primary which covers most but not all of Shelby County than voted countywide in the state Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate. Turnout in the Democratic primaries was twice that of the Republican primaries in Shelby County.

All results are unofficial pending audit and certification by the Shelby County Election Commission and Tennessee election officials

9th Congressional District
Democratic Primary
Steve Cohen 50,284 79%
Nikki Tinker 11,814 19%
Joe Towns Jr. 914 1%

Not even close. Cohen won the primary for the open all Shelby County seat two years ago by 4,400 votes over Tinker and 13 other candidates. This time around he was the incumbent and Tinker’s challenge was more strident with a pair of controversial attack ads in the gap between the end of early voting and election day. Both were probably factors in the vote totals along with a smaller field of five candidates.

Cohen faces independent candidate Jake Ford in the Nov. 4 general election.

7th Congressional District
Republican Primary
248 of 265 precincts reporting
Marsha Blackburn 29,158 65%
Tom Leatherwood 15,636 35%

These are the results district wide which includes not only the eastern part of Shelby County but a strip of Middle Tennessee up to the Kentucky state line. In Shelby County’s part of the 7th district, Leatherwood beat Blackburn with 62 percent of the vote. But it was 62 percent of just over 19,000 votes. Outside Shelby County it was always going to be difficult for Leatherwood.. The low voter turnout in Collierville and other eastern parts of the county made Leatherwood’s task impossible.

Blackburn faces Democrat Randy G. Morris on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Shelby County Charter Amendment #360
Yes  49,506   49.73%

No   50,043   50,27%

Closest contest of the night in Shelby County with a 537 vote margin and the highest turnout with 99,549 votes total.

This set of charter changes was to fix a legal problem noted in a recent Tennessee Supreme Court ruling. Another part of the package deal was increasing term limits for the county mayor and the county commission from two consecutive four year terms approved by voters in 1994 to three consecutive four year terms. The County Commission meets Monday to ponder whether it should offer another charter amendment on the Nov. 4 ballot that would fix the legal problem.

Shelby County Charter Amendment #361
Yes 65,548 68%
No 30,188 32%

This set of charter amendment includes provisions for recalling elected officials. It also establishes a new method for filling a vacancy in the office of County Mayor.

General Sessions Court Clerk
Otis Jackson 51,438 52%
Chris Turner 43,971 45%

The upset of the evening. Turner, the Republican nominee and the incumbent was seeking a fourth term. Jackson, the Democratic nominee, was making his fourth bid for county-wide office after coming close in a 2006 bid for County Clerk.

Paul Mattila 54,734 57%
Ray Butler 29,977 31%

Mattila beats Butler in a race featuring an energetic and misleading campaign by M. LaTroy Williams in which Williams billed himself as the “real Democrat.” He was, in fact, an independent candidate garnering 8 percent of the vote. Mattila fills the remaining two years left in the term of office of the late Bob Patterson, a Republican. Mattila, a Democrat, worked with Patterson. Butler, the Republican, was also a friend of Patterson’s and the race amounted to who would best continue to operate the office as Patterson did.

Criminal Court Judge Div. 6
John Fowlkes 44,581 52%
Latonya Burrow 21,874 26%
Michael G. Floyd 12,071 14%
Claiborne H. Ferguson 6,240 7%

Fowlkes serves out the remaining six years left of the eight year term of office of Fred Axley who resigned from the bench shortly after winning re-election in 2006. Burrow finished a close second to Axley two years ago and again ran an energetic campaign this time around. But Fowlkes status in the legal community and his appointment to the bench by Gov. Phil Bredesen proved to be the advantage.

Assessor of Property
Cheyenne Johnson 59,637 60%
Bill Giannini 39,057 40%

Johnson, the Democratic nominee, easily beat Giannini, who is also doubling as local GOP chairman. Local Democrats keep the county-wide position in their column as voters go for the candidate endorsed by outgoing Democratic incumbent Rita Clark.

U.S. Senate
Democratic Primary
2,192 of 2,290 precincts reporting
Bob Tuke 54,613 32%
Gary G. Davis 37,193 22%
Mike Padgett 32,190 19%
Mark Clayton 30,359 18%
Kenneth Eaton 13,718 8%
Leonard Ladner 4,431 3%

These are the statewide results. Tuke got 42 percent of the Shelby County vote with Clayton finishing second. Tuke, the former state Democratic Party chairman, faces Republican incumbent Lamar Alexander, one of the most successful politicians in the history of the state, in the Nov. 4 general election.

Judicial Retention Races

All seven state appellate court judges, including two Tennessee Supreme Court justices, won their yes/no contests on the ballot across the state. That includes Tennessee Criminal Appeals Court Judge Camille McMullen of Millington who was just appointed to the bench in June by Gov. Phil Bredesen.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.


84. Polls Open For Primary, County Elections -

Polling places in Shelby County will be open today from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. for state and federal primaries and county general elections.

Also, voters will decide the fate of two sets of amendments to the Shelby County charter, and will vote yes or no to retain seven state appeals court judges. The county general election ballot features races for assessor, trustee, General Sessions Court clerk and Criminal Court judge Division 6.

85. Get Ready to Vote Thursday -

Early voter turnout in advance of Thursday’s election was higher in Shelby County than it was four years ago. But it was lower than the total from two years ago.

Early voting ended Saturday evening at 19 locations across the county.

86. 8K Early Voters Cast Ballots So Far -

Just more than 8,000 citizens voted early through Friday in advance of Shelby County’s Aug. 7 election day.

Voting totals for Thursday and Friday included the first two days of early voting at 18 satellite locations across Shelby County. And with the opening of the satellite polling places, voter totals jumped by more than 10 times compared to days when the Shelby County Election Commission headquarters was the only early voting location open.

87. Blackburn Touts District, Blasts ‘Earth-First-Istas’ -

In a note to supporters on her campaign Web Site, U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn casts herself as a champion of rural Tennesseans – and uses strong language to differentiate herself and her constituents from environmentalists and “liberal elites.”

88. Leatherwood Receives Gun Owners’ Endorsement -

It was only a few weeks ago that his opponent in the Republican primary for Tennessee’s 7th congressional district seat, incumbent Marsha Blackburn, announced the National Rifle Association’s endorsement of her campaign. Now Shelby County Register of Deeds Tom Leatherwood has a similar endorsement.

89. Blackburn’s Son-In-Law Raises Nearly $1M as Lobbyist -

A newspaper’s review of lobbying records found U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s son-in-law and his companies have been paid about $1 million to lobby the federal government since 2004.

The Tennessean reported Paul Ketchel III represents several companies that are inside the Brentwood Republican’s district and fall under the authority of the House committee she serves on.

90. Early Voting Starts Today -

Early voting in advance of the Aug. 7 election begins today Downtown.

The ballot features primary contests for state and federal offices as well as county general elections for assessor, General Sessions Court clerk, trustee and Shelby County Criminal Court Division 6 judge.

91. Ford's Wife Gives to Cohen's Challenger in Memphis -

NASHVILLE (AP) - Former Rep. Harold Ford Jr.'s new bride is lending her financial support to the primary challenger of the Democrat who succeeded her husband in Congress.

Federal campaign finance reports show Emily Threlkeld Ford has given Nikki Tinker $3,300 to support her effort to unseat Rep. Steve Cohen in the 9th Congressional District.

92. Blackburn’s Campaign Gains NRA Endorsement -

A new feature was added Tuesday to the campaign Web site of U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn: a large emblem of the National Rifle Association.

The gun lobby has announced its endorsement of Blackburn, the Republican incumbent in Tennessee’s 7th congressional district running for re-election, calling her a “great friend to Tennessee gun owners and hunters.” Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA’s lobbying arm, said Blackburn’s signing of a “friend of the court” brief in the recent U.S. Supreme Court case that struck down a Washington gun ban was one reason for the group’s support.

93. Blackburn Warns Supporters Of Leatherwood Challenge -

Marsha Blackburn is telling her supporters that she is facing her most serious challenger this year since her first run at elected office in 2002.

The U.S. representative for Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District is facing Shelby County Register of Deeds Tom Leatherwood in the Republican primary for her congressional seat. The primary election is Aug. 7.

94. Gibbons Weighs Governor Run in 2010 -

Shelby County District Attorney General Bill Gibbons has expressed an interest in running for Tennessee governor, the Commercial Appeal reported.

Gibbons said he’s “very interested in running” for governor in 2010 if former U.S. Sen. Bill Frist opts out of the race.

95. FEC Complaint Filed Against Blackburn Campaign -

The Washington-based watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, along with Germantown resident Barbara Kaye, has filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against the campaign committee of U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn and the committee’s treasurer, Tea Hoffman.

96. Pickler Supports Leatherwood In House Primary -

In a recorded phone message that’s gone out to households in Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District, Shelby County Board of Education chairman David Pickler has given his endorsement in the Republican primary to Tom Leatherwood, Shelby County register of deeds.

97. Frist Endorses Blackburn in House Bid -

Former U.S. Sen. Majority Leader Bill Frist, the Tennessee surgeon from Nashville who served two terms in the Senate, announced his endorsement this week of Marsha Blackburn for re-election as the U.S. representative from Tennessee’s 7th congressional district.

98. Ex-Weapons Inspector To Speak Tonight at CBU -

One of the first items to enter the news cycle this week was the U.S. military involvement in Iraq and the possibility of conflict with Iran.

Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, told the U.N. Security Council Monday that Iran and Syria are hampering efforts to rebuild Iraq. That's also one of the topics a Memphis audience will get to hear about firsthand tonight.

99. Smith Hired as Regional Clinical Director Of Ageless Men's Health -

Jeff Smith has been hired as regional clinical director for Memphis-based Ageless Men's Health, which provides treatment for men with low testosterone levels.

Smith has 24 years of experience in the medical field, and is a registered nurse specializing in intensive care, neuro-trauma ICU and emergency-room disciplines. He is the founder and owner of ICU Jet International Inc., a fixed-wing, air-ambulance service.

100. Blackburn Fixes $164,000 Worth of Campaign Finance Errors -

NASHVILLE (AP) - U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn is revising her campaign finance statements downward by nearly $164,000 because of accounting errors dating back to 2002.

A spokesman for the 7th District Republican from Brentwood says most of the mistakes made in Blackburn's campaign filings stem from 2002, when she switched from running for re-election to the state Senate to running for the U.S. House.