Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) told WKRN that he will work to change a state law that requires the state’s governor to declare July 13 as “Nathan Bedford Forrest Day,” in honor of the Confederate Army general and the Ku Klux Klan’s early leader.
Embattled Tennessee House Speaker Glen Casada (R) said he will resign his leadership position in the coming weeks, the Tennessean reports.
“Casada’s announcement comes less than a day after the House GOP caucus approved a resolution with a 45-24 vote stating it had no confidence in his continued leadership… The move comes just weeks after a Tennessean investigation found Casada had exchanged sexually charged text messages with Cade Cothren, his former chief of staff, who admitted to using cocaine while working in the legislature’s office building.”
A judge in Tennessee is facing repercussions after posting racist memes and articles to Facebook, including a post that called Muslims “foreign mud” and said Jews should “get the fuck over the Holocaust,” the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports.
“A controversial bill that has received national attention over criticism that it would criminalize voter registration efforts was approved in the state Senate on Thursday,” the Tennessean reports.
“If the bill is enacted, Tennessee would become the first state to threaten voter registration efforts with civil penalties for incomplete forms.”
“Tennessee lawmakers are considering a bill that would impose new restrictions on groups conducting voter registrations and subject them to potential criminal charges and civil penalties,” the HuffPost reports.
“Activists say the move is unnecessary and would deter voter registration in a state that already has one of the lowest rates in the country.”
“We have a little bit of a problem in this state, and I’m just going to say it out right. This is a racist state.”
— Tennessee Democratic party chair Martha Mancini, quoted by the Tennessean.
“After months of campaigning and more than $50 million in spending, Tennessee voters head to the polls Thursday decide who will be the Democratic and Republican gubernatorial nominees,” the Tennessean reports.
“Also on the ballot are primaries for the U.S. Senate, Congress, the state legislature and a host of local contests across the Volunteer State.”
Politico: Why is Tennessee’s primary on a Thursday?
Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) turned down an offer to become next U.S. ambassador to Australia, the Tennessean reports.
Said Corker: “I had a number of conversations with both President Trump and Secretary Pompeo. At the end of the day though…it just felt like it wasn’t the right step.”
The Tennessee Republican Party “took action Saturday to remove seven Senate candidates and one gubernatorial candidate from the August ballot because they lacked the voting credentials to justify running as Republicans,” the Tennessean reports.
“For the second time in recent weeks, a resolution denouncing neo-Nazis and white nationalists has died in the Tennessee General Assembly,” the Tennessean reports.
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam (R) “vetoed a bill seeking to make Tennessee the first state to designate the Bible as its official book,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
Haslam, who considered entering a seminary before deciding to join the family truck-stop business after college, said in his veto message that the bill “trivializes the Bible, which I believe is a sacred text.”
“Tennessee Republican Party leaders approved a delegate slate on Saturday over the heated objections of Donald Trump’s campaign, which is accusing the state’s insiders of supplanting several supporters with anti-Trump forces,” Politico reports.
“At a tense meeting of the state party’s executive committee, police removed pro-Trump protesters, and an already heightened sense of confrontation was exacerbated when Trump’s national director of social media tweeted out the personal cell phone of the state party chairman, Ryan Haynes.”
“Donald Trump’s campaign issued a late-night plea in Tennessee on Friday, telling supporters there that the state’s Republican Party was ‘trying to steal’ his delegates and urging them to crash a party meeting on Saturday morning to stop them,” Politico reports.
“Party leaders, alarmed by an intensifying backlash throughout the night, have hired extra security for the event — which party chairman Ryan Haynes noted had been scheduled to take place in a small, unsecured conference room — and they’re considering canceling the event altogether.”
“At issue are the state’s 14 at-large delegates that were not assigned in the March 1 primary but are set to be selected by the party’s executive committee.”
“A bill that would make the Holy Bible the official book of Tennessee was given approval in a legislative committee on Tuesday,” the Tennessean reports.
“The move to make the Bible the state’s official book comes a month after Tennessee lawmakers approved a measure to make the Barrett M82 sniper rifle the official state rifle.”
Politico: “Tennessee is now one of the biggest hubs for GOP political activity in the country. … Tennessee has 58 delegates up for grabs on March 1. That’s the third-biggest slate of delegates available that day, following Texas and Georgia … An ad buy in Knoxville, in the eastern part of the state, can also hit corners of Virginia, North Carolina and Kentucky.”