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VOL. 131 | NO. 225 | Thursday, November 10, 2016


Bill Dries

Last Word: Underperforming At the Polls, Tenoke Plans and Poverty in Cordova

By Bill Dries

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Still parsing election numbers, although 24 hours after the polls closed in Shelby County, the Election Commission was still counting absentee ballots.

Here is a statewide perspective from Associated Press.

And here is the local recap including the local races of note.

The absentee ballots still pending are 2,970 more votes to be totaled into a turnout that looks to break the 60 percent mark but still be the lowest turnout in 12 years locally for this election cycle.

So keep in mind that as this is being written we still lack that relatively small number of votes as part of the tally. That said, here are a few observations:

Hillary Clinton got 208,320 votes in Shelby County and the verdict on that number is the same verdict you heard over and over again Tuesday evening as the state-by-state projections and then actual results delivered the news – she noticeably underperformed.

The 208,320 votes for Clinton in Shelby County , compares to 232,201 votes for Barack Obama in Shelby County four years ago and 253,209 for Obama locally in 2008.

More of you voted for the county charter amendment that requires county commission approval for a county mayor to fire a county attorney than voted for Clinton – 221,912.

Donald Trump also underperformed at 116,096 votes in Shelby County compared to the 135,536 votes for Mitt Romney in 2012 and 143,321 who voted for John McCain in the 2008 presidential general.

The number for the county charter amendment could arguably be more relevant to Trump since the ballot question was pushed by county commissioner Terry Roland, who was the West Tennessee director for Trump’s campaign.

The top local candidate in terms of vote totals was 9th District Cong. Steve Cohen with 171,070.

That’s within Shelby County and all of Cohen’s district is within Shelby County.

New 9th District Cong.-elect David Kustoff had 194,155 votes across the 15 counties that make up the Congressional District. And 80,265 came from the parts of Shelby County in the 8th.

The top total for a Tennessee legislator representing Shelby County -- 26,527 -- was for the newest member of the Shelby County delegation – Republican Mark Lovell, who upset incumbent District 95 state Representative Curry Todd in the August primaries and was running unopposed on the November ballot.

District 99 Republican incumbent Ron Lollar drew 22,830 votes and he too was running unopposed.

Local money managers react to the race at the top of the ballot and what it did to markets Tuesday during the national projections and vote counts.

And in Arkansas, medical marijuana was approved by voters Tuesday in what is seen as a cultural tipping point not just across the river but for the south.

Plans for another boutique hotel, this time at the Tenoke Building on Jefferson between Second Street and B.B. King Boulevard.

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland says he will restore the city’s subsidy to pre-65 retirees – most of whom are police and firefighters – through a private health care exchange with the subsidy coming through Health Reimbursement Accounts.

Poverty in Cordova and some programs at the new Houston Levee Community Center that address a need some of us might not recognize, especially if our image of the city is formed by the ZIP code we see.

Sam Stockard’s “View From The Hill” column on the state’s problem with turning out of office indicted politicians. In the process, you get a really good review of corruption investigations through the decades in Tennessee.

PROPERTY SALES 88 88 7,923
MORTGAGES 119 119 8,904
BUILDING PERMITS 253 253 17,320
BANKRUPTCIES 42 42 5,201