It is illegal to buy votes, but not illegal to put people on your payroll who will endorse you. While it may not be illegal, it is unseemly to buy endorsements. I am talking about Bill Freeman and the number of prominent people who have endorsed him and are on his campaign payroll. At-large Metro Councilman Jerry Maynard and state Rep. Brenda Gilmore are among those who "endorse" Freeman but are also paid "consultants" to his campaign. Another person paid by the campaign who has endorsed Freeman is Democratic Rep. Sherry Jones. Maynard got paid $18,090 for three months work on the campaign.
To read The Tennessean article that exposed this, follow this link; however, unless you are a subscriber to the Tennessean you may not be able to access it. It looks like the Tennessean is finally putting up their pay wall.