Some TN political reading possibilities, May 8, 2016

Akbari, McCormick profiled
The latest in Sam Stockard’s series of profile pieces on Tennessee state legislators: Rep. Raumesh Akbari, who strives to be a worthy successor to the late House Speaker Lois DeBerry, and House Majority Leader Gerald McCormick, who can be “a little mercurial” on occasion.

McCormick, btw, has written an op-ed piece lauding the accomplishments of the 2016 session. It’s HERE (and not mercurial at all).

Blind man now sees, pushes Congress to aid others
A Nashville man, who was once legally blind, can now see and is helping U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander and others to fashion legislation that could help others get the experimental stem cell treatments that helped him, according to Michael Collins.

Reflections on religious counseling
David Plazas got a courtesy call from Gov. Bill Haslam prior to the gubernatorial signing of the religious counseling bill – but he still thinks the governor and the legislature have opened a Pandora’s Box. HERE.

Jack McElroy, meanwhile, suspect there may be more to come in the future on counseling legislation — say repealing the exemption for government-sponsored therapists. HERE.

TNGOP leaders ready to accept Trump spanking?
Otis Sanford likens Tennessee Republicans lining up to support Donald Trump to his childhood days of lining up with others boys to be padded by a teacher. Full column HERE. An excerpt:

Although the teacher was not who we were used to — or even liked — she was in control. And we had to follow her orders.

That is exactly what’s happening now, particularly in red state Tennessee, as entrenched Republican Party leaders come to grips with the reality that someone who is not conservative or Republican by any stretch will be the party’s nominee for president.

Columnist calculates Haslam’s Hall tax savings
Martin Harmon calculates that the 1 percent cut in Tennessee’s Hall tax on investments will save Gov. Bill Haslam a half-million dollars and, when the whole thing is repealed, he’ll save $3 million per year. HERE.

Cagle ready for war
Frank Cagle thinks Tennessee needs to launch a war on gang violence. HERE.

David Fowler: ‘One of the state’s most powerful lobbyists’
For those who would rather listen than read, an NPR audio report — put together by Nashville’s Chas Sisk — on Christian conservative activist David Fowler is HERE. Runs about 5 minutes.