Tag Archives: gubernatorial

Sunday Column: Appreciating Gubernatorial Ire at Media

Things haven’t been go ing all that well for Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration lately on the media attention front, so maybe it was understandable that he expressed irritation last week when asked about ties to an East Tennessee developer who benefited from recently passed legislation.
“I want to say something: You all’s job is to ask questions, but it’s also your job to get the answer right,” he lectured reporters in the course of explaining why he is without fault in the situation. “Quite frankly, I think it’s a disservice when people imply something’s wrong when they know there’s nothing wrong.”
The Tennessean story that triggered gubernatorial ire reported that he would likely sign “a bill that would aid a personal business associate and overrule the city of Gatlinburg’s efforts to regulate moonshine distilleries.” The article quoted the developer in question, Ned Vickers, and others to the effect that Haslam had no connection to Vickers’ Gatlinburg distillery and that he hadn’t even seen Vickers in years.
But the governor saw an implication there and it made him mad — or at least as close to mad as our mild-mannered and gentlemanly chief executive ever gets in public.

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A Host of Hosts for Haslam’s Knoxville Re-election Fundraiser

Almost 200 people are listed as hosts for Gov. Bill Haslam’s re-election fundraiser in Knoxville on Jan. 7, the day before the 108th General Assembly session begins, reports Georgiana Vines.
The $1,000-per-person event for Knoxville’s former mayor will be 6-7:30 p.m. at Scripps Networks Interactive, 9721 Sherrill Blvd. Among the hosts is Ken Lowe, chairman of the board, president and CEO of Scripps Networks. The company is separate from The E.W. Scripps Co., which owns the News Sentinel.
…The host committee… includes numerous Knoxville business and professional people and a handful of political figures. Family members, including the governor’s father and stepmother, Jim and Natalie Haslam, also are on the list.
Mike Edwards, president/CEO of the Knoxville Chamber, is listed as a host, although his wife, Susan, is not. She is a vice president with KUB and generally remains out of the political picture. Rhonda Rice, the chamber’s executive vice president, and her husband, Bill, also are hosts.
Fred Marcum, an aide to former U.S. Sen. Howard H. Baker Jr., and Wayne Ritchie, a former state representative from Knoxville, are among the hosts.
The invitation notes an individual maximum for the governor’s race is $7,200 or $14,400 a couple.
Haslam also plans a fundraiser in Nashville before Jan. 8, when the Legislature opens. By state law, neither the governor nor lawmakers can have fundraisers during the session.

Haslam Plans Two Fundraisers Soon to Kick Off 2014 Reelection Campaign

Gov. Bill Haslam says he’ll get his 2014 reelection campaign underway with at least two fundraisers – one in Knoxville and one in Nashville – before the legislative session begins in January.
The governor was asked Monday about House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh’s statement that he is considering a run for governor in 2014. He said “Craig has every right” to make the campaign, but it doesn’t alter his own plans.
“We’ve always intended to have a vigorous campaign,” he said, declaring plans for the two fundraisers. He gave no details of the events.
“I’ve always intends to do this regardless of the circumstances,” Haslam said.
Under state law, the governor and state legislators are prohibited from political fundraising while the General Assembly is in session. The session starts on Jan. 8.
The Republican governor’s plans for an early start contrast with Ripley Democrat Fitzhugh’s vow to put off launch as campaign as long as he can in the belief “the shorter the better.” Fitzhugh also said he recognizes Haslam has high popularity ratings and “deep pockets” to run a campaign, but believes Democrats need a candidate to “rally around” at the top of the ticket in 2014.

Note: Previous post HERE.