Group Supporting Incumbent Justices Raises $600,000

ERIK SCHELZIG | Associated Press

NASHVILLE (AP) – A group supporting the retention of three incumbent Tennessee Supreme Court justices says it has raised $600,000.

The campaign called Keep Tennessee Courts Fair is supporting Justices Connie Clark, Sharon Lee and Gary Wade, who face yes-no votes on the ballot in August.

Republican Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey of Blountville has been spearheading efforts to persuade voters to reject the justices, each of whom was appointed by then-Gov. Phil Bredesen, a Democrat.

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam has named two new justices to the high court bench, but they won't be appearing in retention votes this year.

Haslam has said he won't become involved in the campaign against the incumbents. If even one of them loses, it would shift the balance of the court that will name the next state attorney general.

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