Write-in candidate files in House District 15

Rhonda Lynnese Gallman, who is known as “Mousie” and often demonstrates on behalf of justice and unity on Knoxville’s Martin Luther King Avenue, has qualified as a write-in candidate in House District 15, reports Georgiana Vines.

On the certificate she signed requesting that her ballots be counted, Gallman said she was running in a Democratic primary and a general election. Cliff Rodgers, Knox County elections administrator, said it is “fine” for her to do that, since she apparently identifies with the Democratic Party, but this is not a primary election and only a general election.

The ballot will list Rick Staples, whom the Knox County Democratic Party chose as its candidate after a felony conviction disqualified incumbent state Rep. Joe Armstrong from running, and Independent Pete Drew.

Armstrong was found guilty by a federal jury of filing a fraudulent income tax return on Aug. 8. His attorney, Gregory P. Isaacs, has asked a judge to either throw out the conviction or grant him a new trial.

Armstrong said Friday he had filed retirement papers on Thursday, his anniversary date from when first elected in 1988, with his retirement becoming effective the same day as the special legislative session that begins Monday to resolve an issue on federal funds that are jeopardized.