Thursday, June 30, 2016

Gov. Haslam Says He's Going To Try To Help Republican Lawmakers Win, Not Trump

By Anna Butrico, Nashville Public Radio - Governor Bill Haslam may not ever endorse Donald Trump. Tennessee’s Republican Governor has been hesitant to give his official support for the GOP nominee. Haslam now says he doesn’t plan to focus on the presidential race. .... “I haven’t been real excited about some of the things he said. I guess that’s the best way to put it." (link)

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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Grant Starrett is not going to birng up that stuff about Scott DeJarlais pressuring his misstress and his wife to have abortions.

Grant Starrett Pledges To Not Attack Personal Issues 
Challenges Scott DesJarlais to do the same 

Grant Starrett
Press release, (MURFREESBORO, Tenn.) – Today, Grant Starrett challenged Scott DesJarlais to join him in a pledge to the people of the 4th Congressional District of Tennessee that he will engage in a policy-centered campaign, not a campaign on personal attacks.

In a video posted to his official campaign Facebook account, Starrett stated:

“I've gone out of my way not to talk about Scott DesJarlais' personal life, instead I've highlighted our differences in vision, in policy, and how we'd approach the job of being a Congressman. And what I'm going to tell you today, is that is exactly what I'm going to continue to do. I'm going to talk about just that: our policy differences. I'm not going to attack Scott DesJarlais' personal life.

Now, make no mistake, we will have a vigorous debate over policy. I find Scott DesJarlais' record in Washington unacceptable. I'm going to continue to talk about the fact that Scott DesJarlais has voted for hundreds of millions of dollars in Obama's military cuts, he's voted for hundreds of billions of dollars in Obama's food stamps, and he continuously refuses to define when life begins. I know when Tennesseans know the real DesJarlais record, I will win this election.

And if DesJarlais feels that he has a record he can run on, he's welcome to join me in this battle of ideas, because that's exactly what he called for when he ran for reelection last time. His campaign said that they left 'The negative personal mudslinging to political opponents knowing that voters want to focus on issues, not personal attacks,' and that 'It is just the sort of disgusting gutter politics we'd expected from Nancy Pelosi and her allies in Washington.' That's exactly what Scott DesJarlais has called for.

"Look, ultimately, as Christians, our sins will be held accountable by God. As Americans, our politicians will be held accountable by the people. Let's make this election about how to help Tennessee families, not about how to attack each other's."

In 2014 and 2012 DesJarlais’s campaign decried personal attacks from his political opponents:

"DesJarlais spokesman Robert Jameson called the piece "just the sort of disgusting gutter politics we'd expected from [U.S. House Democratic leader] Nancy Pelosi and her allies in Washington."

"We have focused on his official work in Washington and Tennessee and left the negative personal mudslinging to political opponents knowing that voters want a focus on issues, not personal attacks," spokesman Robert Jameson told National Journal."

"He's chosen to engage in these same sort of gutter politics that Tennesseans have rejected in the last two elections."

"Desperate personal attacks do not solve our nation’s problems, yet it appears that there are those who choose to continue to engage in the same gutter politics that were characterized by national media as the nastiest in the nation just two years ago."

"They have once again resorted to pure character assassination."

My Comment:  I would like to see Scott Desjarlais defeated.  I think it matters even it you vote pro-life but pressure your pregnant  mistress to get an abortion. If you do, you are not a person of character and I think character matters.  This issue has been used against Scott Desjarlais before however and apparently his constituents do not care; they have elected him and reelected him.  I have heard chatter that the Desjarlais's campaign has sent out a hit piece of Grant Starrett.  I have not seen it and this is not confirmed and I do not know the context but have been told it was a nasty personal attack. If anyone has the piece please shoot a picture of it and mail it to me at

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Bellevue Republican Breakfast Club meets July 2nd. Guest speaker Nathan Massey.

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First Tuesday, Wednesday July 6th. Special guest Steve Allbrooks and Scottie Nell Hughes.

From Tim Skow

HAPPY JULY 4th !!!!
WHAT A MONTH JULY is going to be in political history !!!

After a slew of candidates, controversies galore and MILLIONS spent... the preliminaries are over. PHASE 2 of electing a new President is at hand.

The Republican Party National Convention starts 2 weeks !

On Wednesday, July 6th ... at the July version of 1ST TUESDAY... you are about to get a personal preview of what is LIKELY take place in Cleveland !

Scottie Nell Hughes
Joining at 1ST TUESDAY: 6-time Convention Delegate, political guru and Congressman Marsha STEVE ALLBROOKS.  Blackburn's right-hand man,
....... AND..... Tea Party News Network Anchor and noted political contributor to FOX News, CNN and more, SCOTTIE NELL HUGHES.

This will be a VERY insightful event. Learn what to expect. Hear what may happen... AND... what to watch out for ! As always, doors at Waller Law [511 Union Street -27th floor] open 11am. Lunch from Copper Kettle Catering is $20 for Members and $25 for Guests begins at 11:30 with program at Noon sharp ! Secure seats for you, friends and those you care to invite at

Make plans, pass the word and join us on WEDNESDAY ! Enjoy this day.... and remember why we celebrate July 4th ! Look forward to seeing you on Wednesday... July 6th at 1ST TUESDAY !

Tim Skow,  Host of 1ST TUESDAY

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NOAH to host school board candidate forum tonight.

NOAH is hosting a a candidates forum tonight for District 5 school board candidates and other forums for District 7 and 9 to follow.

NOAH describes itself like this: "A faith led coalition that is multi-racial and interdenominational comprised of congregations, community organizations, and labor unions that work to give voice to traditionally marginalized people. NOAH engages ordinary people in the political and economic decisions affecting their lives, acting as a unified voice for the faith and justice community to act on its values in the public arena."

I would normally not expect candidates who are not in the pocket of unions to not get a fair hearing at a NOAH forum.  NOAH would be predisposed to support the candidates who support unions.  Member organizations of NOAH include the teachers union (MNEA), and SEIU Local 205, as well as several other unions. Organized labor has been a stumbling block to education reform. Having said that however, their is a fissure in the left of center spectrum especially in the Black community when it comes to education. Many African-Americans and white progressives have warmed to the idea of school choice and are sick of bad schools.  There are numerous examples of charter schools producing college-bound graduates instead of prison-bound dropouts. So, while NOAH may be predisposed to support opposition to education reform, the message of rejecting the status quo and striving to have a good school for every child regardless of the zip code may resonate with many of those who attend a NOAH event.

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Monday, June 27, 2016

State Loses Hearing, Shampoo Case Will Move Forward

Press release, NASHVILLE – In a major decision, the Beacon Center's lawsuit against the state of

Tammy Pritchard fights for right to earn
to earn a living washing hair

Tennessee's shampooing law will move forward. Last month, Beacon sued the Board of Cosmetology for its law requiring a license to wash hair. The state tried to get the case dismissed, saying there are "public safety issues" and that "favoring certain groups on economic grounds" is just politics, but the judge disagreed.

In denying the state's request to throw out the suit, Chancellor Carol McCoy stated that she has never heard of any safety issues with shampooing. She went on to note that our client deserves to have her day in court.

Beacon's client Tammy Pritchard was ecstatic. She exclaimed, "Down in my soul, I am so happy. I am truly overwhelmed at this ruling."

Beacon Director of Litigation Braden Boucek added, "I am very pleased with this result, it is a great day for freedom in Tennessee. We are one step closer to restoring the constitutional right to earn a living for Tennesseans like Tammy."

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Antioch neighbors oppose affordable housing development and property rights be damned!

This is what the proposed project would look like.
by Jen Todd, The Tennessean - Antioch residents are growing increasingly concerned about a proposed affordable housing apartment complex on Forest View Drive, citing overcrowded schools, traffic congestion and safety among many potential issues. ..... Councilwoman Karen Johnson has attempted to downsize the development to instead have single-family homes, saying the development would cause a concentration of low-income housing. ... Should they succeed, the Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) board would reduce the number of low-income tax credits that could go to Nashville. ... THDA Executive Director Ralph Perrey have said downsizing the project would waste tax credits awarded for the property, causing fewer families access to affordable homes. (link)

My Comment. "I really want more affordable housing in Nashville, but don't put it in my backyard," say many Nashville political leaders.  "Also, we really don't care about property rights, we represent the concerns of our constituents."

"Tax credit" properties are not "projects."  If no one tells you, you would never know the funding to build the units included tax credits. They are not income-based but are priced to be affordable to people who may make a modest income. For more on this story see this link and this.

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Corker: We can protects due process rights and keeps guns out of terrorist hands

By Melanie Hunter,, June 27, 2016- Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee,  told CNN’s “State of the Union with Jake Tapper” that Congress can still pass a bill that “protects 2nd Amendment rights” and keeps guns out of terrorist hands.

Tapper asked Corker about a gun control bill introduced by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) last week after four other gun control bills were defeated along party lines. Collins’ bill would ban people on the government’s no fly list from buying guns. The bill fell shy of the 60 votes needed to advance it. Only eight Republicans voted for it, and Corker was not one of them.

Opponents of the bill were reportedly concerned about due process. They objected to the government being able to block the sale of a weapon without first demonstrating probable cause to a judge that the person trying to buy the gun was a terrorist. .... Corker said a gun control bill introduced by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) seems like a better option, because it doesn’t have the same due process concerns that the Collins bill does. (link)

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We cannot, under any circumstances, afford to lose the House.

I doubt I am going to vote for Trump.  The one reason I may, if I do, is that I do not want Hillary picking the next Supreme Court Justice. There are many reasons I could never vote for Hillary. My primary reasons why I probably won't vote for Trump is that he may start a world wide trade war, may actually deport 11 million Mexicans which would  be a humanitarian crisis and could destabilize Mexico, may allow the U.S. to default on our debt which could cause a major world wide depression which in addition to suffering and starvation could destabilize nations and disrupt the balance of power to our disadvantage. The minor reasons I am not likely to vote for Trump is that he is an offensive, crude, bombastic, egomaniac, bully. He still could persuade me to vote for him, but he would have a lot of persuading to do.

Should Hillary be elected she would most likely serve only one term.  If she wins and Republicans can hold the Senate and the House, we can mitigate the damage she can do. Realistically however, if she wins, Democrats probably retake the Senate for at least the first two years.  If we can keep the win below 60 seats however, we can still do a lot to mitigate her mischief and frustrate her policies, if we can hold the House.  We must hold the House!

I am not sure how I am going to vote or if I am going to vote for president. I am responding to this appeals to hold the House however. If you are going to vote for Trump or not, please join me in trying to save the House.

Ted Cruz

Rod --

It's easy to get distracted by the non-stop coverage of the presidential election, but we must not overlook those up for election to Congress.

We cannot, under any circumstances, afford to lose the House.

If we do, there won't be anything stopping Nancy Pelosi and her liberal allies from trampling all over your constitutional rights.

That's why I'm personally asking you to join me in supporting House Conservatives as they fight for the principles that you and I share.

Pitch in $27 Immediately >>>

Pitch in $75 Immediately >>>

Pitch in $147 Immediately >>>

Pitch in $247 Immediately >>>

The stakes are high: Thursday marks the critical FEC second quarter deadline.

Will you join me in standing to protect our House majority and defeat Obama's liberallegacy?

Rod, because your support is so important at this critical hour, every contribution made before the deadline will be TRIPLE MATCHED.  

We need strong conservatives elected nationwide -- and we can only getthere with help from patriots like you.

For Liberty,

Senator Ted Cruz

P.S. Here's a safe & secure link to donate online right now:

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TNGOP Response to "Whole Women's Health" SCOTUS Decision

NASHVILLE, Tenn.-June 27, 2016—In a 5-3 decision, the United States Supreme Court today found
women’s health provisions passed in Texas were unconstitutional. The case was Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt.

Two provisions of the Texas law were challenged: admitting privileges for doctors and surgical standards. Media outlets have reported the decision may have an impact on similar laws here in Tennessee. Reaction from pro-life advocates and conservative voices was swift.

State Senator Becky Duncan Massey (R—Knoxville) remarked, "Women's health should not be a political football. Today's decision undermines several initiatives to ensure women and their safety are prioritized. We will recommit to ensuring Tennessee stays on the path of valuing life, health, and safety."

State Representative Susan Lynn (R—Mt. Juliet) stated, "Today's Supreme Court decision is a disappointing moment for women's health in Tennessee. Once again, the Court has found a way to circumvent the will of the people. I am firmly committed to making sure that life is protected and that women are not put into risky medical situations. That's what we will continue working toward in the General Assembly."

Tennessee Republican Party National Committeewoman Peggy Lambert said, "It is not a mistake that life is the first inalienable right. This dangerous decision puts women at risk and ensures that more innocent lives will be taken. As a Party, we are committed to advancing proposals that value the essential human right to life and fighting back against an industry that values profit over safety."

In response to the decision, the TNGOP launched a pro-life petition to rally Tennesseans around the causes of women’s health and the protection of life. The petition may be found at:

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Sunday, June 26, 2016

Rachel Maddow: Orlando attack follows ISIS 'soft target' call

This video is diffidently worth watching. It explains why "lone wolf" terrorist attacks are still "terror attacks."

 Rachel Maddow is one of my least favorite on-air news personalities, or news reporters, or commentators, or whatever the term may be.  She makes me cringe.  Her smug, cutesy, preachy, unfiltered self-righteous  liberalism makes be want to throw things at the TV.  I feel the same way about her as I am sure many liberals must feel about Rush Limbaugh.  She is not boring however and despite my dislike for  her, I still occasionally watch her.  I was surprised recently to see her explain something better than I have  heard it explained by anyone else. I must give her credit.  I guess even a blind pig finds an acorn every once  in  while.

In the past few years there have been several of these "lone wolf" terrorist attacks. Just like in Orlando, the perpetrator claims his allegiance to ISIS or claims he is committing his act in the name of Allah.  Conservatives generally are quick to call these attacks, acts of terrorism; liberals, not so much.  The media is reluctant to initially speculate that these acts are acts of terrorism.  Sometimes the media and government spokesmen will claim the massacre  was "work place violence," or a "hate crime," or the perpetrator was suffering from mental illness. The religious faith of the attacker is not one of the first things they initially consider important.   It is almost as if they are looking for any motivation for the attack other than radical Islam.  When no ties can be found to ISIS or other organized terrorist groups the act is often  not considered to be a terror attack. 

In this report Rachel Maddow explores the way the ISIS terrorist organization encourages attacks on western civilian targets by followers who act independently and are not given specific orders. ISIS gives a general order for their followers in the West to not come to the Middle East to join ISIS on the battlefield but tells them to commit terrorist attacks on the infidels where they are.  ISIS says do not ask permission or coordinate with us; just do it.  They also say hit soft targets; that does more to spread terror than hitting military or hardened targets. ISIS also tells their followers to make it know they are doing it as an act of Jihad and are loyal to ISIS. Maddow does a great job of laying all of this out.

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Stand for Children endores Sigler (34th district). Cox (45th), Lockhart (47th), and Whitson (65th).

From their website - Stand for Children is committed to ensuring that every child in Tennessee has access to, and is prepared for, a college education. This is why we support experienced, dedicated, and focused leaders who are committed to innovation in education and aligned with our vision to make quality public education available to all children. In this year’s upcoming election, stand with these candidates in your district:

Christy Sigler (District 34) – As a lawyer specializing in child welfare, she is committed to fight for high education standards.

Beth Cox (District 45) – With a proven track record of working for students as the Chairman of the Sumner County Board of Education, she is focus on finding and retaining the best teachers for our children.

Will Lockhart (District 47) – As the husband of a kindergarten teacher, he has made high quality public education a top priority and understands the importance of working to close the achievement gap.

Sam Whitson (District 65) – With 5 grandchildren in Tennessee public schools, his focus is on college and career readiness for all students.
How do we know that these candidates will be a stand-out voice for our children?
We endorsed them after reviewing their responses to a candidate survey, conducting phone interviews, and reaching consensus within Stand for Children Tennessee’s Statewide Endorsement Committee.

Help us spread the word that these candidates speak for us on education and stand with us to ensure that every child receives the education they deserve.  Stay tuned for more information about the 2016 election!
My Comment: In district 34,  Sigler is one of four Republicans seeking the seat being vacated by Rep. Rick Womack. In district 45, Cox is challenging Rep. Courtney Rogers.  Rogers won election to the House in 2012 challenging incumbent Representative Debra Maggart in a race that painted the reasonable mainstream conservative Maggart as a liberal and ally of President Obama.  In district 65, Lockhart is one of two Republicans challenging Rep. Judd Matheny. Matheny has been a controversial figure in the State legislature associated with the most nutty elements of the tea party movement. He was the sponsor of the bill to ban Sharia law, that before being watered down to being meaningless, was so broadly written that it would have criminalized the most benign of Muslim religious practices. His once mistook a mop sink in the Capital as the installation of a Muslim foot bath fountain and sounded an alarm (link). In 2012, he mounted an unsuccessful effort to unseat Beth Harwell as speaker.

Stand for Children's mission "is to ensure that all children, regardless of their background, graduate from high school prepared for, and with access to, a college education."  They advocate for greater school funding, are sometimes critical of teachers unions, and  generally view charter schools favorably. 

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Friday, June 24, 2016

Supreme Court Affirms Rule of Law; Separation of Powers in DAPA Ruling

Press release, Nashville, Tennessee - The Supreme Court of the United States handed down President Barack Obama a major defeat by deadlocking on the United States v Texas, No. 15-674, a case concerning the legality of an executive action allowing more than 5 million undocumented immigrants to remain in this country without living in the fear of deportation.

Raul Lopez, Executive Director of Latinos for Tennessee, a non-partisan organization committed to defending faith, family, liberty and fiscal responsibility issued the following statement after the Supreme Court ruling.

"Immigrant families in Tennessee need to know that had President Barack Obama worked with Congress, millions of families and young adults would not be concerned about their future. But because the president chose to act unilaterally ignoring the constitutional prerogative that law making rests with Congress, and not the executive branch, immigrant families are searching for answers and looking for hope," said Lopez.

Lopez went on to add:

"Today's ruling was an important victory for the rule of law and the separation of powers. We are committed to supporting immigration and our state's immigrant community, but not at the expense of our U.S. Constitution."

For more information on Latinos for Tennessee, please visit:

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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Rep. Curry Todd Taking Per Diem Money While Living Free From Lobbyist

Press release, COLLIERVILLE, TN Having recently been voted overall worst Legislator in Tennessee for 2016, Curry Todd has been exposed for an incredible double-dealing in regard to his reimbursed expenses from taxpayers.  Each lawmaker who lives more than 50 miles from the Capitol is allowed to collect a per diem for reimbursement of lodging and meals. 

For Shelby County lawmakers, these reimbursements are totally legitimate due to the distance involved.  However, State Representative Curry Todd has been collecting these reimbursements and, at the same time, being given a free room thanks to Lobbyist Chuck Welch.  During this same time, Todd was working the bills Welch was paid by his clients to get passed.

“I’m pleased to see that I am not the only person in Tennessee troubled by this kind of behavior,” said Mark Lovell, Todd’s August 4 conservative Republican challenger.  “Not only should lawmakers be vigilant in keeping their distance from financial involvement with Lobbyists, but they should be making sure there is not even the appearance of this kind of double-dipping.”

TN Forum, the watchdog group that awarded Todd their “2016 Worst Legislator of the Year” went on to expose Todd’s lack of aggressive sponsorship of legislation directly affecting his district.

Lovell continued, “My opponent has been up there too long.  He has forgotten whom he represents.  I can understand that since he actually lives in Nashville and only comes home to campaign for re-election.  Shelby County voters are smarter than that.  I am a private businessman who gets things done.  I don’t need a job, but I want to go serve my neighbors in a way that is sorely needed.”

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Reactions to Supreme Court deadlocks, shooting down Obama's executive grant of amnesty.

Today the Supreme Court deadlocked on President Barack Obama's program that by executive order granted amnesty to as many as  5 million illegal aliens. The State of Texas joined by 25 other states, had brought suit challenging the legality of the Presidents executive order and  prevailed in district court. The Obama administration had appealed the lower federal courts ruling to the Supreme Court. The 4 to 4 tie in the Supreme Court means the lower court ruling stands.

Here is how the Tennessee reports the story: Deadlocked Supreme Court blocks Obama on immigration

For more reactions:  
Hillary Clinton slams 'heartbreaking' immigration ruling

Corker Statement on Supreme Court Blocking Obama Immigration Executive Actions  
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) today released the following statement after a 4-4 decision by the United States Supreme Court affirmed an appeals court ruling that blocks President Obama’s executive actions on immigration.

“I strongly oppose President Obama’s unilateral actions, which effectively changed immigration laws without going through Congress, and I am pleased that the Supreme Court affirmed the lower court ruling blocking these actions from moving forward,” said Corker. “Today’s result is a victory for separation of powers and the democratic process.”

The Supreme Court took up the case (United States of America v. State of Texas) after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in November of 2015 affirmed a preliminary injunction by a federal district court in Brownsville, Texas, blocking the Obama administration from moving forward with its executive actions on immigration.

In April 2016, Corker joined U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and 41 other Senate Republicans in filing an amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of a challenge by a majority of the nation’s governors and attorneys general of the states, including Tennessee, to the Obama administration’s November 2014 executive actions on immigration.

Blackburn Applauds United States v. Texas Decision  

Press Release - Congressman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s 4-4 decision in United States v. Texas, which upholds the lower court’s decision that the president’s use of executive action to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants is unlawful:

“Today’s Supreme Court decision proves that Congress should pass and the President should sign H.R. 5272, the Blackburn-Cruz DACA language.

“For years I have fought to pass legislation to end the DACA program. This is a win for the Constitution and for the American people. President Obama’s use of a pen and phone to rewrite immigration laws from the oval office to implement executive amnesty was lawless from day one. SCOTUS has sent King Obama a powerful message,” Blackburn said.


As part of the Department of Homeland Security Funding bill last year, the House approved, by a vote of 218-209, Congressman Blackburn’s proposal to freeze the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The House first approved her legislation, H.R. 5272, which would also prevent President Obama from taking future executive actions to expand amnesty for illegal aliens, on August 1, 2014 by a vote of 216-192.

On January 19, the Supreme Court agrees to hear United States v. Texas, but adds its own question for the parties to consider: Did the president’s actions violate his constitutional duty to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed”?

On March 1, Speaker Ryan announces that he will ask the House, as an institution uniquely qualified to answer the Court’s question, to vote on a resolution authorizing him to file a brief defending Article I: “The president is not permitted to write law—only Congress is.”

On March 17, the House adopts H. Res. 639, authorizing Speaker Ryan to file a brief. Speaking on the floor shortly before the vote, Ryan says, “Members who are making immigration policy arguments are missing the entire point here. This comes down to a much more fundamental question. It is about the integrity of our Constitution.”

On April 4, the House files its brief, setting forth why Congress—and only Congress—is empowered to write the laws.

On April 8, the Supreme Court grants the House’s request for 15 minutes of time during oral arguments. Erin Murphy, partner at Bancroft, PLLC will argue on behalf of the House, which is being represented pro bono in this matter.

On April 18, the House of Representatives presented its oral argument to the Supreme Court.

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(update) What happened at Council meeting of 6/21/16? Budget passes, no surprises.

The Council voted to approve the $2.08 billion Council substitute operating budget 36-0.  The budget, which did not require a tax rate increase, increased spending  $121 million, or 6.1 percent over the current budget.  The capital spending plan, tax levy, and other bills related to the budget were also approved. To watch the presentation of the substitute budget go to timestamp 39:07 in the video.

To access the Council agenda, the council staff analysis and my commentary on the agenda, follow this link.

In other council business:
 BILL NO. BL2016-257  on Second Reading, which  would allow Codes to issue stop-work orders against illegal, non-permitted short-term rentals and increase the ban on an STR permit at such a property to three years, was deferred. 
BILL NO. BL2016-258  on Second Reading passed unanimously without any discussion. This bill sells the old Ben West library to the state teachers union and looks suspicious to me.
BILL NO. BL2016-259   on Second Reading, which requires that the Metropolitan Transit Authority  provide to the Metropolitan Council a comprehensive plan for a system of mass transit no later than December 31, 2016, was approved. There is some discussion but it is not very interesting but if you want to watch it, it starts at time stamp 26:59.
BILL NO. BL2016-238   on Third Reading, which permits some establishments to have unisex bathrooms, is amended and passes.  This is a reasonable bill. Read more about it here
BILL NO. BL2016-240 on Third Reading would establish new rules and fees for developers who close streets or sidewalks during construction.. This sounds reasonable but is more complex than it first sounds. It is deferred one meeting. 

For those who want to understand the details of what changes were made to the budget and understand the fees charged to waste haulers and other fee changes, you may want to watch the Budget and Finance. You learn more watching B&F than you do the Council meeting.

Here is The Tennessean's report: Megan Barry’s first budget — including more for arts, schools — OK'd

This is still a work in progress. I have not yet watched all of the B&F meeting. Look for another update.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Corker warns Trump to stop 'slurs and innuendo,' deflects VP speculation

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker sees ;tremendous potential in Donald Trump, but remains concerned about some of his remarks. Sen. Bob Corker, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said Tuesday he sees "tremendous potential" in Donald Trump to change the way Washington works.

But the Tennessee Republican added he can't support some of the controversial things Trump has said.

"Obviously, I haven't condoned some of the slurs and innuendo that have been laid out by the [Trump] campaign," Corker told CNBC's "Squawk Box,"... (link)

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NRA endorses Diane Black

NRA endorses Diane Black,  The Tennessean-  "As I shared recently, I obtained my handgun carry permit after becoming the victim of physical assault nearly 20 years ago. I know that the Second Amendment safeguards an individual's right to defend themselves and the people they love  and that is a right we can't afford to lose," Black said in a statement announcing the endorsement.


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School Board Candidate Forum on June 23

Join Nashville Rise at the School Board Candidate Forum on Thursday, June 23rd. Doors open at 5:30pm on TSU's Avon Williams Campus.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

All four gun control measures fail in the Senate. See how Alexander and Corker voted.

Following the terrorist attack in Orlando, Democrats and liberal media attempted to use the tragedy to advance gun control. Senate Democrats held a 15-hour filibuster to bring gun control bills to a vote.  Republicans allowed the bills to come to the floor but the outcome was pretty much known in advance.   There were four bills addressing the topic of access to guns and all of them failed. Nothing was accomplished. Below is a summary of what was voted on:

  • Sen. Chuck Grassley (R) sponsored a bill to add funding to the FBI’s existing National Criminal Instant Background Check System (NICS). It failed by a vote of 53 to 47, needing 60 votes to pass.
  • Sen. Chris Murphy (D) sponsored a bill to close the so-called "gun show loophole."  It would expanded the requirement to do a background check to individuals who sell guns to each others. That failed by 44 to 56.
  •  Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) sponsored a bill that would  block gun purchases for buyers who show up on some government  no-fly list or other watchlist. It failed by a voter 47 to 53.  In my view this was the most dangerous of the bills.  With no accountability, the government could put your name on a list and take away your 2nd amendment rights.  Names are put on list in secret and you are not even notified your name is on a list.  This bill essentially denied due process and would be a great tool to abuse. The American Civil Liberties Union has long complained about the credibility of the FBI database and argued that individuals such as former Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Massachusetts, were at one time on the watch list. The ACLU also said the database is “unconstitutionally vague, and innocent people are blacklisted without a fair process to correct government error.” Some people end up on the watchlist simply because they make an error and attempt to use and expired credit card to buy an airline ticket. It is a total mystery why some people end up on the watchlist.  In December 2014, there were 80,0000 people on the consolidated watchlist.
  • Sen. John Cornyn (R) had a bill that would delay a gun purchase when a buyer's name showed up on a watchlist.  There would be a three day waiting period during which time  prosecutors could make a case to a judge that the person is an actual threat and the purchase should be delayed until the government conducts an investigation. Should a judge find probable cause to detain the person, the person could be detained.  This seems like a reasonable bill.  It preserves due process and actually requires that the  person attempting to purchase the gun be investigated and calls his attempted purchase to the attention of the government, while all the Feinstein bill would do is simply stop the purchase. The Fenstein bill would not trigger an investigation. Unfortunately this bill also failed by a vote of 53 to 47. It needed 60 votes to pass.  Several noted conservatives such as Ted Cruz voted for this measure
Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker vote for bills one and four above and against bills two and three. Most votes were along party lines with Republicans voting for one and four above and Democrats voting against them, and Democrats voting for bills two and three above and
Republicans voting in opposition. For more on this issue see this linkthis link, this link,  and this link.

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What's on the Council agenda for June 21, 2016: The $2.087 billion budget, suspicious deal with a union, uni-sex bathrooms, and new rules for short-term rentals.

The Metro Council will meet Tuesday, June 21st at 6:30 PM. This is the meeting at which the Council will pass the annual operating budget and the capital improvements budget. There is no suspense or drama involved.  The budget does not include a tax increase and while this would have been a perfect year to cut taxes, no one proposed it.  No citizens asked for a tax cut.

A couple years ago member of the public lead by  Nashville Tea Party packed the court house wearing bright light green tee shirts with the message "no tax."  This year they were not to be seen. As is the norm, opponents of bigger government and more taxes only get engaged in years in which there is a proposed increase in taxes; proponents of more government spending are engaged everyday. By their absence of engagement, I can only conclude that opponents of increased government do not really care that much. I am disappointing that none of the half dozen or so council member who may be thought of as conservative did not offer an alternative budget, but I can't blame them since there was no one urging them to do so.

The Council has an alternative to the Mayor's budget which will pass.  It makes minor tweaks to the mayor's budget, the major change is that it includes more funding for the arts.  For more on the budget, follow this link.

To watch the Council meeting, you can go to the courthouse and watch the meeting in person, if you are so inclined, but unless you are trying to influence a Council member and think your presence in the audience will exert an influence, I don't know why you would want to.  Meetings are broadcast live at Metro Nashville Network's Government TV on Nashville's Comcast Channel 3 and AT&T's U-verse 99 and are streamed live at the Metro Nashville Network's livestream site. You can catch them the next day on the Metro YouTube channel. If you will wait, I will watch it for you and post the video and point out the good parts so you can go to that point in the video and watch just that segment. Also, I will tell you what I think about what happened.  Council meetings are really boring and I watch them so you don't have to.  If you are going to watch a council meeting, you really need the agenda and  the Council staff analysis or you won't know what is going on. 

Here is my commentary and analysis of the agenda. I am only listing what I think is interesting or important items so if you are really interested in actions of the Council you may want to  read the agenda for yourself.  Also, be advised that I don't even try to understand all zoning issues, so if zoning issue interest you then don't trust my commentary.  

Confirmation of appointments to Boards and Commissions: There are six positions on the agenda and I expect the Council to rubber stamp them all. One is an appointment to the Human Relations Commission the agency responsible for enforcing  and promoting political correctness in Nashville. I wish we had the type of conservative on the council who would vote against all appointments to this agency until the agency stops sponsoring the youth pavilion at the gay pride festival. I do not think it should be a function of metro government to normalize homosexual activity among young people.

Resolutions: There are 13 resolutions on the agenda, all on the Consent Agenda at this time. If a resolution has any negative votes in committee it is taken off of consent.  Also any council member may ask to have an item taken off of consent or to have his abstention or dissenting vote recorded. All items on consent are passed by a single vote instead of being voted on individually.

Several items are on the agenda that are related to the budget including three resolutions adopting new pay plans for different departments, essentially giving pay raises to employees in those departments. There is a also a resolution establishing new a permit fee schedule for private waste haulers and a resolution adopting a new fee structure for the Planning Commission reviewing plans.

RESOLUTION NO. RS2016-245  issues $475 million in GSD general service obligation bonds to fund  Mayor’s 2016-2017 Capital Spending Plan. This funds projects which are in the Capital Improvements Budget. The city sells bonds and a certain amount of the property tax rate is dedicated to debt service to pay off the bonds.  While we have a consolidated government, Metro still has what would essentially be considered a  "city" and "county."  The USD is the urban services district and includes most of the county but excludes the mostly rural or suburban parts of the county. GSD is the General Services District which is the whole of Davidson County. This bond issue is backed by the tax base of the general services district.

RESOLUTION NO. RS2016-277  request that the Tennessee General Assembly and Gov. Bill Haslam communicate with Nashville’s business groups and community before passing legislation that could be detrimental to Nashville & Davidson County commerce. This is meaningless and if I were in the Council I would not bother voting against it.  Since it is on consent, the sponsor will not be able to explain his bill and blast the Governor or State legislature for bills such as that that addressed freedom of conscience for metal health counselors or the bill that prohibited rental price fixing or the bill prohibited Metro from requiring contractors to discriminate against out of county residents in hiring on Metro projects.  It is better to let this meaningless bill slide through rather than give the sponsor a platform.
Bills on First Reading: There are six bills on First Reading but I usually don't review bills on First Reading. First reading is a formality that gets bills on the agenda. They are not evaluated by committee until they are on Second Reading. All bills on First Reading are lumped together and pass by a single vote.

Three are 11 bills on Second Reading and these are the ones of interest:
BILL NO. BL2016-257 would allow Codes to issue stop-work orders against illegal, non-permitted short-term rentals and increase the ban on an STR permit at such a property to three years. Now, if one is caught operating a short-term rental without a permit, the ban on getting a permit is one year. The Tennessean explains this at this link: Nashville may ramp up penalty for Airbnb permit violators.

BILL NO. BL2016-258  is what appears to be a sweetheart deal that would put Metro in bed with the    
state teachers union. It would sell the old Ben West library to the TEA and they would allow Metro to use the property rent-free for up to 12 days a year.  The city put out a Request for Proposals which included a requirement that the building be preserved. I do not know the nature of the other proposals. I hope someone at budget and finance ask a lot of questions and actually looks at the other proposals, if there were any.  I think it would be more appropriate for TEA to pay more for the property and not give Metro 12 free days.  Metro has lots of other locations to have meetings. We should not be so entangled with an organizations that is often opposed to education reform and whose main goal is the financial interest of teachers. Their interest is often not the same as that of Metro government.

BILL NO. BL2016-259   would require that the Metropolitan Transit Authority, in conjunction with any other related entities, provide to the Metropolitan Council, no later than December 31, 2016, a comprehensive mass transit plan for Nashville and Davidson County.  It is to include funding sources and a timeline.
Bills on Third Reading:
BILL NO. BL2016-232   is the 2016-2017 operating budget. It is a budget of $2.087 billion, which is a 6% increase or $119 million increase over the current budget. It does not require a tax increase. This bill will be substituted for a Council version which makes minor insignificant shift in the funding.

BILL NO. BL2016-233  established the tax levy for the coming year which is the same as the current tax levy. The rate for the GSD is $3.924. The rate for the USD is $0.592. This gives a combined rate of $4. 516 for those in the USD.

BILL NO. BL2016-235  increases the fees Public Works charges for various services.

BILL NO. BL2016-238   would permit some establishments to have unisex bathrooms. These seem reasonable to me. Read more about it here.

BILL NO. BL2016-240 establishes new rules and fees for developers who close streets or sidewalks during construction.. This sounds reasonable but is more complex than it first sounds.

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Jackson Miller's School Board candidate interview with The Tennessean

For access to other candidate interviews, follow this link.

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Saturday, June 18, 2016

Six questions we should ask after Orlando

1) Are there more home-grown terrorists than we realize? The short answer is probably yes. While the United States has fewer Muslim ghettos than the UK or France, the growing emphasis on what makes us different rather than what makes us the same almost dictates there will be more young Muslims drawn to the extremist ISIS message. Similarly, Saudi and other money has poured into mosques and Islamic schools advancing a more extremist message.

2) Are lone wolves avoidable? My instinct is largely yes. But that will require more attention to centers of extremism, including foreign funded schools and mosques; more attention to those who seem inclined to extremism; more of the intrusive government that liberals and conservatives together loathe; more scrutiny of those who will end up being entirely innocent. Worth it? You tell me.

3) Why guns? There’s a tendency to attribute more planning and strategic thinking to terrorists, who often rely on luck to inflict their damage. But guns have a special political part in American life. There’s the constitutional right to bear arms, and the fierce devotion of many Americans to that right. And there is the passionate opposition of many — the President of the United States included — to the sale and ownership of those guns. And here we are, talking about guns. Talking about a terrorist attack in the context of other mass shootings as if they were the same. Was that on purpose? Utilitarian? Can guns do more damage than the preferred tool of terrorists, the explosive device? Are they easier to find? Or is this a more sophisticated effort to divide the public?

4) Who can buy a gun? Apparently, terrorists. Former residents on terrorism watch lists. Former known associates of actual terrorists. We all know why: Stove piping. The FBI, local law enforcement, intelligence and the myriad other enforcement agencies all keep their lists separate. This is why the Department of Homeland Security was created in the wake of 9/11 — to stop this sort of stove piping and ensure that information is shared. Guess what? It still isn’t. And more government bureaucracy hasn’t fixed it.

5) Why a gay nightclub? Was it just opportunism? Hatred? Another strategic effort to direct and divide conversation? Hard to know. But remember, the narrative for Islamists is that they are hitting at the “corrupt heart” of America. A Turkish Islamist paper headlined the event thus: “50 perverts killed in bar”. In addition to women, Jews, Christians and other Muslims, gays have become a favored target for Islamists. What is US policy doing about that? Not much. And contrary to the favored trope — we win by living our lives — the short answer is that we’re not winning. Their virus is spreading from Syria to Turkey to Afghanistan and beyond.

6) Should we bar all Muslims? Omar Mateen was born in the United States. Major Nidal Hasan was in the US Army. But there’s a more important issue here. What does the United States stand for? As vile as it is, a terrorist attack against a gay club in Florida doesn’t alter the American way of life. But beginning to segregate the country, immigration policy and attitudes based on religion will change us. What makes America great is the hope it holds for the world, the example it shows. Barack Obama may not like to admit it, but America is the greatest nation because of our values, because of our openness, because of our conviction that what it takes to be an American is a commitment to this country, not a creed or a race or a sex. Are those days of greatness behind us?

My comment. 

Having listened to and read a lot of news and commentary on the terrorist attack in Orlando, this above essay comes closest to summing up my feeling.

Item #6 is something that I have been conflicted over.  It would be tempting to say we should ban all Muslims immigration to America, but I agree with the author.  We cannot withdraw from the world and pull up the drawbridge.  Many of the worlds Muslim refugees are the one who have fled ISIS areas and had their life put in danger.  They are our allies in the fight against radical Islam, they are not our enemy.  We must be mindful that there could be enemy infiltrators among them and we should try to properly vet them, but we cannot not turn our back on those who are the primary victims of radical Islam. Also, if we had never gone to war in Iraq, perhaps ISIS would have never developed.  To a certain degree, we have an obligation to deal with the mess beyond a mere humanitarian obligation. Also, as the author says, "What makes America great is the hope it holds for the world, the example it shows."  We should not abandon our values in tough times.

On item #3, I agree with the writer.  The mainstream media and the Obama administration has tried to turn this tragedy into a focus on guns instead of terrorism. On item #4, I think the author raises a good point in critiquing the failure of the various government agencies to share information and improve intelligence. I am not going to jump on the bandwagon, however, and say that if one's name is on "no-fly" list, they should not be allowed to purchase a weapon.  The "no-fly" list is compiled in secret without due process.  Given the recent history of the IRS in targeting critics of the administration, I do not trust an administration, any administration, to draw up a secret list of people for whom it is permissible to take away their constitutional rights.  Maybe a waiting period for those on the list could be imposed, and a purchase of a weapon by someone whose name is on the list should alert authorities,  but we should not deny constitutional rights based on a secret list. Again, we should not abandon our values in tough times.

On item #2, I do think we should be doing more to know what goes on in the American Muslim community.  When the FBI brought down the Klu Klux Klan, it seems that in any gathering of three Klansmen, one of them was an FBI informant.  I would hope we have Muslim informants in every mosque in America and every Muslim student group.   I don't know the extent of our intelligence gathering, but I have the impression that political correctness and reluctance to "profile" keeps us from gathering the intelligence we need to be gathering. It is not a violation of constitutional rights to infiltrate and attend meetings.  We should be mindful of the constitutional right of American citizens but we should not shy away from delving deep into the American Muslim community to determine what is taking place.

On item #1, I think the writer is right when she says, "the growing emphasis on what makes us different rather than what makes us the same almost dictates there will be more young Muslims drawn to the extremist ISIS message."  That is not to say that I am naive and think that putting a "Coexist" bumper sticker on your car and constantly proclaiming "Islam is a religion of peace" will produce fewer Jihadist, but I do think that we should work to integrate Muslims into American society rather than isolate them. Hateful comments and jokes insulting to Muslims and discrimination against Muslims probably does fertilize the seeds of radical Islam.

In addition to the above, I think the U. S. should join the debate within the Muslim community in the rest of the world.  Just as Radio Liberty and Radio Free Europe provided the truth to those behind the iron curtain and kept hope alive during the dark days of the cold war, we perhaps should launch a campaign to influence the dialogue in Islamic nations and give a voice to those who oppose the insanity of radical Islam. We should give a platform to  moderate Muslims clerics to counter those funded by Saudi Arabia.  We should fund moderate non-governmental organizations and publications.  We should provide news and entertainment and commentary by those speaking in a sane voice in the voice of the local people.   Muslims are now 23% of the worlds population and gaining. We must engage to make the world safe. We can't retreat to fortress American and draw up the drawbridge and we must remain true to our values.

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Do fathers matter?

Brad Wilcox on the importance of fathers – Full Interview Part 1 

In the first part of this interview, W. Bradford Wilcox and Christina Hoff Sommers discuss his research on the widespread impact of fatherlessness, from economic consequences to the important role fathers play in the lives of their children.

Black Fathers Matter 

Which poses a bigger threat to black communities: Racism? Or the absence of fathers? Drawing on a sea of official data and his own upbringing, talk-show host Larry Elder shows just how important black fathers are in turning boys into responsible and happy men--and how their absence has had a tragic impact on millions of black Americans.

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Keeping Americans Safe at Home and Abroad

by Phil Roe U. S. Representative, 1st District of Tenneseee - Early last Sunday morning, 49 innocent

Phil Roe
people were robbed of their lives when a gunman entered a nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The gunman, who I will not name, allegedly pledged allegiance to ISIS during and prior to this horrific act. An attack on one American is an attack on all Americans - no matter their political party affiliation, religion, socio-economic status or sexual orientation – and I continue to keep the victims and their families, first responders, law enforcement and the entire city of Orlando in my thoughts and prayers.

I am sickened and heartbroken that, once again, we have experienced a cowardly act of terror in our homeland, and I believe we must unite to defeat this evil While the facts surrounding this senseless attack are still being discovered and investigated, I want you to know that fighting terrorism at home and abroad will always be a priority for me as long as I serve in Congress.

 Just last week, the House Republicans’ Task Force on National Security released our proposal for keeping Americans safe and eliminating the threat of terrorism. Our plan includes keeping terrorists out of America with strengthened intelligence and immigration laws, taking the fight to our enemies abroad, and winning the war of ideas against this hateful ideology. I believe the American people, particularly in light of a tragedy like this, need a plan we can rally around. And – while I believe this proposal is a better way to secure our homeland – I’m glad our work to protect the homeland has already begun. In the House of Representatives, we’ve passed several bipartisan bills to provide tools and resources specifically for counterterrorism and intelligence efforts, and that work will continue. Make no mistake, we are at war, but Americans will prevail. We will stand together, and we will fight the ideology that thinks it is okay to slaughter innocent people for no reason.

Two important bills passed by the House to address radicalization in America are H.R. 4820, the Combating Terrorist Recruitment Act, and H.R. 4407, the Counterterrorism Advisory Board Act. Both of these bills would help fight against the radicalization and recruitment of terrorists in America. Additionally, the House passed H.R. 4401, the Amplifying Local Efforts to Root Out Terror (ALERT) Act. The ALERT Act allows for better coordination across the federal, state, and local levels to stop radicalization and terrorist recruitment in the U.S. We’ve also passed bills to close security gaps that allow foreign fighters to travel throughout the world. H.R. 4402, the Foreign Fighter Review Act, requires a full and comprehensive review of Americans who have become foreign fighters in hopes of identifying domestic security gaps. Further, H.R. 4314, the Counterterrorism Screening and Assistance Act, equips U.S. allies and high-risk countries with counterterrorism tools to stop terrorist travel while allowing the administration to suspend foreign aid to countries who do not close security gaps.

These are just a few of the steps the House has taken to protect Americans at home and abroad. You can find a complete list of counterterrorism bills passed by the House here. I hope to continue to have open, honest conversations with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle about ways we can keep Americans safe. I agree with House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mike McCaul’s remarks this week: to defeat this enemy we must define them. The enemy is radical Islamic terrorism, and we have to work together to discredit and defeat this ideology of hate. This is a war of ideas – a war America will win – but we need buy-in from all Americans who value peace and freedom, no matter their political party affiliation, religion, socio-economic status or sexual orientation. We’re all in this together, and together we will stand.

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The Metro Council's proposed FY17 Substitute Budget makes minor tweaks to the Mayor's budget

The Metro Council's proposed FY17 Substitute Budget  makes minor tweaks to the Mayor's budget  including $300,000 more for Metro Nashville Arts Commission ( $285,000 in Program Grants and $15,000 in public art maintenance) and $49,800 for the salary and benefits of a new Intake Diversion Counselor to help pet owners keep and maintain their animals.

The Budget and Finance Committee will take up the budget Monday, June 20th at 4PM and the Council will vote on the budget at the meeting of  June 21st.  To learn more about changes in the substitute budget see this letter from B&F Committee Chair Bill Pridemore

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Friday, June 17, 2016

Mark Levin Endorses Grant Starrett For Congress

Press release, MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Last night, Mark Levin endorsed Grant Starrett on

Grant Starrett
his live, nationally-syndicated broadcast. Mark Levin is one of the most influential conservative talk radio hosts in the country and can be heard each evening across the entire 4th Congressional District.

In the interview with Grant Starrett, Levin said "I want to endorse you, strongly. I think you'd make an outstanding Constitutional conservative in the House of Representatives" and "wouldn't it be spectacular to get some new fresh young blood in there, another Constitutional conservative who will give 'em hell?"

Levin had choice words about Grant's opponent: "Scott DesJarlais, the fact of the matter is he's utterly and completely useless. He's definitely a sell out, he's definitely a creature of Washington now."

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Thursday, June 16, 2016

Will Pinkston, Amy Frogge and Jill Speering boycott Project Renaissance candidate forum

by Jason Gonzales, The Tennessean, June 14, 2016 - Three incumbent board members are boycotting a candidate forum scheduled by Nashville Rise — a parent group led by nonprofit Project Renaissance — due to concerns about a perceived charter school agenda. The charge is being led by board member Will Pinkston, ....  ...Amy Frogge and Jill Speering also will not be participating. ... scheduled for June 23 ... Pinkston has been one of the most vocal critics of Project Renaissance, founded by former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean. .... The Tennessean's opinion engagement editor David Plazas will moderate Nashville Rise's candidate forum. (link)


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Mark Lovell responds to Rep. Curry Todd's support from teacher's union

 Says “It’s time to retire NEA-supported lawmakers.”

Rep. Curry Todd
Press release, COLLIERVILLE, TN -  Several weeks back, State Representative Curry Todd was featured in a free mailer that claimed to be sent on behalf of Tennessee’s teachers through the Tennessee Education Association.  The mail piece stated that Curry Todd is simply “standing up” for teachers.  Mark Lovell, who is also challenging Curry Todd in the August primary, knew he was being deceived when this mailer landed in his mailbox.

“Like Curry Todd, this mail piece was bought and paid for by an out-of-state liberal union that is completely out of touch with Tennessee conservatives.  The citizens of Collierville and Germantown will not be fooled by glossy mailers and stock photos.  I am certainly not fooled. These same unions support Obamacare, illegal immigration and oppose the 2nd Amendment.”

The Tennessee Education Association, who paid for this mail piece, has its parent headquarters in Washington, D.C.   It has been a high-profile supporter of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.  In 2014, they spent over $40 million on political activities, nearly all of it supporting “progressive organizations” and Democrat candidates.

“This is just the first attempt to buy our primary and keep Curry Todd in power,” Mark Lovell added.  “I won’t let that happen.”
Mark Lovell
Lovell shares the disappointment of many in District 95.  “When Curry Todd first ran for office in 2002, Republicans were an endangered species.  Since then, voters have given Republicans a supermajority in the State House and Curry Todd has rewarded his constituents by giving power right back to the Democrats and their union pals.  Our citizens deserve better.”

Curry Todd and the TEA have a long history.

·      Though TEA claims to be a local organization, it is nothing more than an extension of the National Education Association (NEA).  As TEA’s Democrat Lobbyist has testified, no teacher may join TEA without also joining the NEA under their “unified dues structure”. 

·      The NEA was one of the largest spenders in support of Obamacare and last year they endorsed Hillary Clinton for President before the first primary ballot was cast.

·      In 2014, the TEA fought against the Amendment to ban the state income tax, a source of revenue they fought and protested for a decade earlier during the famous income tax debate of 2002.  TEA and the NEA both opposed the ban on this Amendment by contributing $5,000 each to the effort.

·      They have supported and exchanged contributions with Planned Parenthood and, along with Planned Parenthood, funded the liberal AMERICA VOTES PAC to support Democrats against Republicans.

·      In 2002, the Washington Times exposed the NEA’s promotion of a curriculum that taught students to blame America for the terror attacks on 9/11!  Most recently, they have endorsed the teaching of Islam in our public schools and criticized other state legislators for working to stop Islamic indoctrination in our schools!

Curry Todd has been a consistent supporter of this organization and its values:

·      In 2007, Curry Todd voted with the Democrats against SB113, a bill that ended the National Education Association’s monopoly on representing teachers.  This bill was supported by conservative groups across the nation and has since saved the public education system millions of dollars.  The only losers were the union bosses in Nashville and Washington, D.C who earn six-figure salaries to “represent” teachers. 

 ·      When an amendment was offered to completely repeal the Hall Income Tax, Todd announced he would oppose it (although he eventually went back on his promise).

·      More recently, State Representative Curry Todd voted to give illegal immigrants in-state tuition at Tennessee colleges over the objections of his constituents.  This was in keeping with the NEA’s support of Barack Obama’s amnesty plan!

·      In 2004, Curry Todd further abandoned his voters by supporting HB3486 that allowed illegal aliens to receive Tennessee Driver Licenses.

Lovell concluded, “It’s time for career politicians Like Curry Todd who have traded their principles in favor of big Lobbyist money to return home.  Voters can count on me to stay focused on the needs of Shelby County.”

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