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Kent Williams says
if he wins reelection in 2010, he'll run for House speaker again, and he hopes to do it all as a Republican:
"I hope to be in the Republican primary in August. But if that doesn't happen, it doesn't happen. I didn't take myself out of the party, and I can't put myself back in. I don't think anyone can argue that I'm not a Republican."
Williams also says
he's reviewing tapes of House committee meetings to see if complaints are true that some lawmakers "tried to push their personal issues and held things up." If this "grading" of chairman performances shows that the complaints are justified, Williams said, he will replace the offending leaders. The focus is on three people, he said, though he declined to name them.
Williams doesn't expect
the legislature next year to roll back the gun laws it passed this year, nor to remove the authority of cities and counties to ban guns in local parks.
All but one lawsuit
alleging politics in the Safety Department has been tossed out of court. ... Bredesen joins
Governor's Sportsmen's Caucus. ... Texting while driving
yields two tickets. Corey Oliver doesn't get the point of the law: "Sometimes I swerve. But usually when I start swerving, I stop texting." ... The Tennessee Firearms Association might sue to stop
cities from banning guns in parks. ... Lobbyist Tom Lee
advises drinking establishments not to ban guns. Posting the signs creates a reasonable expectation among patrons that the restaurateur has swept the premises of guns and has assumed responsibility, he opines. ... Aunt B detects
bullshit in what Tom Lee says.
hires an attorney. ... Stimulus funds helped states, but there's no 'appetite' for more, governors say.
... Shipley and Lundberg
defend their votes against the state budget. ... Rick Locker reports
on the paper ballot brawl. ... Gary Odom
and Tre Hargett
debate the issue. ... Liz Garrigan predicts
Metro Council passage of legislation to prevent discrimination against gay and lesbian city employees:
If our last Metro Council was like a collective of home-schooled temperance union virgins, our current Council is like a liberal arts college's randy hemp club on spring break.