Tag Archives: gambling

Budget Bickering, Politicking & Gambling in the 107th’s Last Days

Budget bickering within Republican ranks, determined Democratic effort to make political points and a bipartisan desire to let veterans gamble combined to thwart leadership plans to adjourn the 107th General Assembly last week.
The fallback plan of legislative leaders calls for an unusual Sunday evening session today to deal with the veterans issue, followed by Monday meetings of the House and Senate wherein reunited Republicans will presumably vote down the determined Democrats.
And then, unless plans go astray again, legislators will go home to begin campaigns for election to the 108th General Assembly — probably with some of the curious voting that took place last week as part of the picture for those seeking new terms.

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TN Man Gets Presidential Pardon

A three-year effort to obtain a pardon from the president of the United States ended Monday when a Jonesborough, Tenn., man learned Barack Obama had pardoned him of a 16-year-old federal felony conviction, reports the News Sentinel.
In a written statement, Thomas Paul Ledford of Jonesborough said he was contacted by phone at 9:50 a.m. on Monday that the president had signed his pardon.
“I’m stunned,” he wrote. “I am a pardoned felon. My wife believed it was possible. I believed the pardon would never be granted.”
Ledford pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit gambling on June 12, 1995. He was fined $50 and served 12 months of probation.
“Although I never spent one day in jail, the gravity of my conviction follows me always,” he said in a Dec. 9, 2008, request for pardon.
…Saundra Ledford got the application from the Department of Justice online. Next, they collected the necessary documentation, court transcripts and letters of recommendation. Then they sent the package off to Washington, D.C.. An FBI agent then interviewed Ledford’s friends, family and employers.
“My husband was very adamant no calls be placed to anyone,” Saundra Ledford said. “We don’t know anybody in positions of power. A lot of people say you have to have clout. We’re just regular people.”
In his statement, Tom Ledford thanked the president: “By God’s grace, I won’t let them down.”

State Gambling Profits Reaching Record Levels

The Tennessee Education Lottery is raking in record profits — selling nearly $1.2 billion in scratch-off tickets, nightly drawings and multistate mega-jackpot games in its latest fiscal year, reports The Tennessean.
While 17 other states’ lotteries also hit all-time highs, the 7-year-old Tennessee lottery is growing faster than most, outpacing national lottery growth rates by 63 percent.
Gambling industry observers suggest that, as a result of either dreams or desperation, the soft economy may be pushing consumers to buy more tickets, while Tennessee lottery CEO Rebecca Hargrove says she believes sales would be even higher in better economic times.
Whatever the reason, one thing now appears a sure bet: With the lottery’s success paying off, Tennesseans are soon likely to see an even bigger lottery presence, with more games offered in more places for even larger prizes.

Mayor Accused of Gambling, Bribes in Affidavit

Millington Mayor Richard Hodges used the power of his office for bribes, routinely gambled at a car repair shop and owed more than $10,000 in interest-free IOU’s to a Millington businessman, according to a state investigator’s affidavit obtained by The Commercial Appeal.
“Based on the interviews and recorded conversations …, I believe that evidence of official misconduct, bribery, and gambling will be found at Millington City Hall (Mayor’s Office) and the Transmission Doctors in Millington,” TBI Special Agent David Harmon states in the search-warrant affidavit released Friday.
The document details a series of interviews with a confidential informant who owns a transmission shop in Millington.
According to the documents, Hodges and others gambled in the shop, and the informant loaned Hodges more than $10,000.
Hodges used both a stick and carrot, threatening the businessman with code enforcement inspections and providing him with a police badge, the affidavit states.