Memphis City Council member Janis Fullilove and her husband Vernon Chalmers were arrested Tuesday in the latest in a series of domestic altercations at their home southeast of Memphis International Airport, reports the Commercial Appeal. Each suffered minor injuries and both were charged with domestic assault causing bodily harm.
Police responded to the couple’s home in the 3300 block of Morningview at about 12:17 a.m. Chalmers, 55, told officers he had been out baby-sitting the couple’s grandchildren and visited a friend afterward. When he returned home, Fullilove, 62, accused him of cheating on her and began throwing dishes, according to police.
Chalmers told police that Fullilove had been drinking and that he pushed her to the floor and held her down. Officers reported that Chalmers’ arm was cut in the confrontation.
Fullilove passed out on the sidewalk while being taken to a police car.
Two Democrats and two Republicans are running to succeed retiring state Rep. Janis Sontany, a Nashville Democrat, and all four are in their 30s. Michael Cass has a rundown on the contests. Each candidate brings government and political experience to the table, from seeking or holding an elected office to working for President George W. Bush during his second term.
“It’s a critical period in our state,” said Democrat Jason Powell, who ran unsuccessfully for another House seat in 2006. “We need strong leaders.”
Powell is running against first-year Metro Councilman Jason Potts, who has said he would continue to serve on the council if elected to the House of Representatives.
In the Republican primary, Ben Claybaker faces Tonya Miller, who lost to Sontany, a fifth-term Democrat, two years ago.
…Both Democrats are named Jason, and both have last names starting with P. There’s enough potential for uninformed voters to be confused that Potts, 33, appreciates his slight alphabetical advantage, which will give him the first listing on the ballot.
“I’m on top, so hopefully it goes my way,” he said.
Otherwise, Potts and Powell give Democratic voters more substantive differences to mull over. Powell, 34, is generally seen as a progressive who has advised Councilman Jerry Maynard and judicial candidate Rachel Bell. Potts, who married into an extended family that has produced five Metro Council members since 1983, is more in the moderate-to-conservative tradition
…Sontany is co-hosting a $150-a-head fundraiser for Powell on Wednesday.
…The Republican race pits Claybaker, the CEO of real estate firm NAI Nashville, against Miller, a Spanish-language interpreter.
Miller, 37, said she has worked with many government agencies, including the Tennessee Department of Transportation and various courts, through her interpreting work as a self-employed, independent contractor.
“It gives me a little more compassion,” she said. “I’m there with the people.”
She said she wants to create a digital platform to give constituents more of a voice, producing “something I can carry with me when I go to the floor” to vote. She worries about the nation’s direction, and she wants to help unite various constituencies under the Republican banner.
“The Republican Party is not all about being pro-life or anti-gay,” Miller said. “The Republican Party is about freedom and liberty.”
Claybaker, 36, has been around politics for much of his life. His father is a small-town mayor in Camden, Ark. Claybaker worked for an Arkansas congressman soon after graduating from college and helped run a Texas candidate’s successful campaign for the lieutenant governor’s office.
In 2004 he worked for the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign as political coordinator for Southwestern states, then went to work at the White House as a policy analyst for the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
By Erik Schelzig, Associated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The sponsor of a bill seeking to attract horse slaughter facilities said the bill likely will not pass this year.
Rep. Andy Holt said that chances were not good for the bill to pass, but he remained committed to bringing the industry to Tennessee.
The Senate version of the bill was taken off notice last week and Holt took it off the schedule for the House floor on Monday. He said an amendment that would require hefty deposits for anyone to mount a legal challenge to the facilities was removed from the bill, but he was also working on adding animal treatment guidelines.
“I am not into rushing stuff through,” he said. “We want to make sure all the interested parties have a chance to express their grievances with these bills.”
Holt said he wants to add protections for the horses and horse owners.
“The amendment we are working on right now actually sets up guidelines for animal treatment and for the procurement of these animals,” he said.
Holt, a Dresden Republican, has said his bill would create a humane way to cope with unwanted horses that are sometimes left to starve. But Democratic Rep. Janis Sontany of Nashville said slaughterhouses are seeking a different population of horses.
“They don’t want old or sick horses for slaughter,” she said. “They want healthy horses.”
Democrat Janis Sontany, a five-term state representative from Nashville and a former member of the Metro Council, said Wednesday that she is leaving the state legislature after this year, according to Chas Sisk. Sontany, 65, said she wants to spend more time with her family.
“I never wanted this to be a career,” she said. “It’s just time for me to move on and do something else with my life.”
Sontany, a Democrat, has been in state and local politics for a total of 17 years. She also worked in the government affairs office for DuPont.