A brief YouTube video linked to state Rep. Julia Hurley showing a small dog being held outside a moving convertible was removed from the Internet Monday, two days after it was posted.
More, lifted from the News Sentinel’s website:
The video, titled “Pepper Air Swims” shows the small dog being held out the passenger window, its front legs moving in the air, as two people laugh in the background. (Note: Though the video has been taken off YouTube, the KNS has it up, HERE.)
The faces of neither person are shown. Only the forearms of the person holding the dog are seen. The video was posted to the freshman lawmaker’s YouTube channel under the user name “repjuliahurley.”
Hurley, a Republican seeking re-election to a second term in the 32nd House District, owns a Chinese crested, a hairless breed of dog that she named Pepper. She drives a BMW convertible.
Hurley didn’t return repeated calls and emails seeking comment Monday.
A Roane County resident blasted the video Monday.
“I find Ms. Hurley’s behavior to be extremely unkind and irresponsible,” the Rev. Peggy Blanchard stated in an email.
Two West Tennessee state legislators tried to pass a bill this year that would have made it a crime to conduct the kind of undercover investigation that produced video of horse abuse, reports Richard Locker. The video resulted in federal and state charges against a Collierville walking-horse trainer and three associates. The bill was filed in January by state Sen. Dolores Gresham, R-Somerville, and Rep. Andy Holt, R-Dresden, and appeared en route to passage in the Senate until it ran into opposition in a House subcommittee last month and died for the year.
As originally introduced, their bill — House Bill 3620/Senate Bill 3460 — would create a new state criminal offense “for a person to apply for employment with the intent to cause economic damage to the employer by means of unauthorized recording of video or audio while on the premises of the employer and releasing such recordings to a third party.”
The bill also declared that “All recordings taken in violation of this section shall be confiscated and, after used as evidence, destroyed.”
…A spokesman for the Humane Society of the United States said Thursday the Gresham-Holt bill would have made it illegal for the organization to have sent a representative undercover to work at Tennessee Walking Horse trainer Jackie McConnell’s Whitter Stables in Fayette County near Collierville.
McConnell, 60, of Collierville, and three associates are charged in a 52-count federal indictment in Chattanooga with violating the federal Horse Protection Act. He also faces state charges of violating Tennessee’s Cruelty to Animals Act.
The Humane Society released its undercover video Thursday, showing horses being prodded with electric prods, having chemicals applied to their legs, struck with sticks and subjected to other abuses. (Note: the video is available HERE.)
HSUS said the video was shot in 2011 at Whitter Stables by an undercover representative who applied for a job and worked at the stables for about seven weeks. The video aired on ABC’s “Nightline” Wednesday night and “Good Morning America” on Thursday and is now posted on the HSUS website. The abuses it shows have sparked outrage nationally.
….Holt could not be reached Thursday but Gresham said she wasn’t aware of the HSUS investigation at any time, doesn’t know McConnell and that the bill’s purpose was to ensure that such recordings “get to law enforcement, not to third parties.”
“I just went to the HSUS website and saw the video that they had put on the website. That video needs to be on (Fayette County Dist. Atty.) Mike Dunavant’s desk, not on the internet.”
Gresham said it should be up to law enforcement whether to make videos publicly available, regardless of the Humane Society’s position that posting it raises public awareness of abuse.
Congressional candidate Weston Wamp declined Tuesday to say whether his younger sister recorded or posted online a video titled “Scottie Mayfield Struggles to Answer Basic Questions,” reports the Chattanooga TFP. “The origin of the video is unimportant to us,” Wamp campaign manager Bonnie Brezina said in an emailed statement. “The substance of what Mr. Mayfield said is important to voters.”
Wamp and several of his advisers declined to answer several yes-or-no questions about whether Coty Wamp attended the relevant meeting, filmed the video or uploaded it to YouTube.
….Posted April 18 and apparently filmed hidden-camera style, the YouTube video shows Mayfield telling the University of Tennessee in Knoxville’s College Republicans club that he must get elected to Congress before he gets “too focused” on what he wants to do there. A student at University of Tennessee College of Law, Coty Wamp attended the meeting and may have taped it, according to Tyler King, president of UT’s College Republicans.
From a Chattanooga Times editorial: Scottie Mayfield, one of several GOP candidates trying to oust incumbent Rep. Chuck Fleischmann in the Republican primary, got a full dose of the Youtube gotcha’ treatment Wednesday when he was filmed stumbling for an answer to the basic question he was asked by one of the college students to whom he was speaking. What would be the “top two or three things … (he) specifically would want to accomplish in Washington?”
“Well,” he said, closing up his briefcase as he ended his opening remarks to the College Republicans at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, “I talked to some guys today about that and, uhh, I mean other than the tax code thing, I don’t have any specifics at this point because…”
Because, he rambled on, “it really depends a great deal on the committees on which you get on, and until you know what you’re on, I can tell you what I’m going to do, but if I don’t get on the committee that can do any of those things, I probably will not.”
And so on. So much for fire in the belly..
The video in question is HERE.
The editorial follows up on an earlier story by the Chattanooga TFP that yours truly had missed in my haphazard efforts to keep up with other political goings-on while the legislature is in session. An excerpt:
School board members will be allowed to vote via video phone without physically attending meetings for the first time under legislation approved by both the House and Senate despite complaints about allowing elected officials to dodge the public.
“We’re getting dangerously close to a digital proxy system,” said Rep. Mathew Hill, R-Jonesborough, in House floor debate Thursday. “To make it where you don’t have to face your constituency anymore is very, very troubling.”
Rep. Frank Niceley, R-Strawberry Plains, provided what he called “a little history lesson,” relating that two Oregon state representatives were kidnapped by “radical Republicans” when state ratification of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was in issue during the 1860s. Two men masquerading as the kidnapped legislators then voted for ratification, which passed by one vote in Oregon, Niceley said.
The kidnapping thus effectively “changed the course of history” and “stole power from the states,” he said. Passage of the school board bill, he said, could lead to similar situations.
Proponents of the bill (SB2723), which has been pushed by the Tennessee School Boards Association, said safeguards are provided in the measure to prevent any abuses.
The bill declares that a meeting can be missed only for specified reasons, including illness, military service or a “family emergency.” Each school board across the state must decide to implement the law and, if so, develop it’s own rules for what constitutes a “family emergency.”
A board member could attend meetings by phone a maximum of two times per year and a quorum of the board would have to be physically present at the meeting, not counting those attending by call-in.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The state Division of Elections has developed a town hall video about a new law requiring voters to show a state or federally issued photo ID at the polls next year.
The video provides information about the acceptable forms of photo identification. It lists the options for voters who do not have such a valid ID.
The video can be found on the division web page at http://www.GoVoteTn.com.
According to the Chattanooga Times=Free Press, when 96-year-old Dorothy Cooper went to the driver’s license center Thursday for her second try at getting a photo ID, videographers with Barack Obama’s presidential campaign were there to record events. Tennessee campaign spokeswoman Addie Whisenant is quoted. Democratic Party spokesman Brandon Puttbrese said Cooper “was very receptive” when the party asked about citing her experience in voter education and registration drives.
“We made sure she was OK with this,” Puttbrese said Friday. “She and every other law-abiding citizen just want people to be able to vote.”
But a state Republican Party official pointed to (TNDP Chairman Chip) Forrester’s email (see previous post HERE) and said the Democrats have “exploited a 96-year-old woman for political reasons.”
“It doesn’t seem like the Democrats want to help people vote. They want to scare them,” said Adam Nickas, executive director of the Tennessee GOP.
“I know Tennessee Democrats are struggling to raise money right now but that should never negate their responsibility to inform voters of their voting rights,” he said.
Puttbrese said Cooper’s experience illustrates what’s wrong with the law, which was passed this year in the Republican-dominated state Legislature and signed by Republican Gov. Bill Haslam. Democrats have introduced legislation to repeal the law.
Trooper Brad Proffitt of the Tennessee Highway Patrol will be suspended without pay for one day following an internal investigation of his conduct during an accident involving Carter County Sheriff Chris Mathes during the early morning hours of July 5. So reports the Johnson City Press. According to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, the suspension came for not keeping his dash-mounted video camera operating during his accident investigation. It was revealed the camera only documented 83 seconds of the scene and there was no audio.
As a result of Proffitt’s failure to properly record the events at the scene, Colonel Tracy Trott recommended a one-day suspension without pay for violation of General Order 712-1.
The general order requires “members shall utilize the MVS (mobile video system) to record investigations at crash scenes…and…leave the wireless microphone on during contact with subjects.”
In a press release announcing the suspension, Trott said “Trooper Proffitt used poor judgment in deactivating his patrol car video, and he is being disciplined for that violation…However, his decision to not issue a citation is not in question. Our state troopers investigate thousands of crashes statewide each year, and in many of those cases, citations are not issued. We stand by his decision.”
The Defense Video and Imagery Distribution Systemhas videos and a news release on Gov. Bill Haslam visiting troops in the Middle East. (for a list, type his name in the search box on the website.)
Here’s a video of the governor thanking Third Army troops for hosting him:
The state senator behind an anti-terrorism bill that Muslims say unfairly targets them distributed a video to lawmakers that accuses Vanderbilt University, Tennessee State University and a Nashville mosque of tolerating Islamic extremists, reports Chas Sisk. Sen. Bill Ketron gave his 32 fellow senators a DVD that claims to show that Carlos Bledsoe, a Memphis man and convert to Islam accused of killing an Army recruiter, was radicalized in Nashville.
Ketron distributed the video as state lawmakers are considering his Material Support to Designated Entities Act, which give the governor and the state attorney general new powers to shut down organizations that they deem to promote terrorism.
The video takes aim at a mosque that has played a prominent role in organizing opposition to his bill. It also raises questions about Ketron’s statements that his legislation is not meant to single out Muslims, opponents say. The video claims that Vanderbilt and TSU have turned a blind eye to “radical ideology” being taught in classes led by an instructor affiliated with the mosque.