Thursday, December 16, 2010

Depleted Democratic Corps in Legislature Looks West for Leaders

Posted By on Thu, Dec 16, 2010 at 10:15 AM

Fitzhugh; Kyle
  • Fitzhugh; Kyle
The ill wind that blew down Democratic electoral hopes in November may have blown some good to West Tennessee Democrats.

In the aftermath of the election debacle that left Democrats with only 34 House seats —- compared to the Republican Party’s 64 (with Kent Williams of Elizabethton, erstwhile Speaker and “Carter County Republican,” a de facto independent) the party’s leadership has shifted back westward.

This is the region which provided the Democrats their leaders (John Wilder of Somerville as Senate Speaker; Jimmy Naifeh of Covington as House Speaker) during their most recent decades of domination, now gone.

On Wednesday, a reduced party caucus, meeting in Nashville, elected Rep. Craig Fitzhugh of Ripley, 50-odd miles north of Memphis, to lead the Democrats in the state House (succeeding Gary Odom of Nashville). They also named two Memphis representatives — Joe Towns and Lois DeBerry, as assistant party leader and floor leader, respectively.

Yet a third Memphian, Rep. John DeBerry, had been a contestant for the position of minority leader.
Senate Democrats, meanwhile, named three West Tennesseans as their principal officers. Jim Kyle of Memphis returns as Democratic Senate leader, Lowe Finney of Jackson was elected caucus chairman, and Beverly Marrero of Memphis was named secretary/treasurer. The Democrats’ vice chair is Andy Berke of Chattanooga.

Tennessee’s Republicans recently made their own recent selection of officers, with Ron Ramsey of Blountville returning as Senate Speaker, and Beth Harwell of Nashville having been nominated by the GOP as House Speaker. Memphis’ Mark Norris has been renominated as Senate Majority Leader, and Mark White of Memphis and Barret Rich of Somerville were nominated for GOP whip positions in the House.



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


Speaking of School Consolidation


Readers also liked…

  • Cohen Tells It!

    In which Memphis’ Democratic congressman Steve Cohen, addressing an apparent GOP effort to muddy the waters on the Russian inquiry, not only takes no crap but gives it back where it came from. This is worth watching from beginning to end -- even for those who might disagree on the politics of the matter.
    • Jul 26, 2017
  • Cohen Calls Presidential Race “Armageddon,” Says Trump in League with Russia

    Keynoting a kickoff weekend for Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, congressman addresses local Democrats.
    • Sep 25, 2016
  • The Big River Crossing: A Weekend to Remember

    The giant locomotive whistles, the inspiring speeches, the dazzling display of rainbow lighting on the Harahan Bridge at night, and the first treks across the bridge by foot and by bike are all embedded in Memphis history now, as the "Main St. to Main St. Multi-Modal Connector" project came to pass, linking Memphis to West Memphis, and both to the future. (WITH SLIDESHOW AND VIDEO OF BRIDGE LIGHTS)
    • Oct 25, 2016

Most Commented On

  • New Actions Against Ranked Choice Voting

    The City Council schedules a Tuesday discussion in executive session; also on Tuesday, a bill to prohibit RCV (aka Instant Runoff Voting) comes before a state Senate committee.
    • Feb 19, 2018
  • Tragedy in Nashville: Megan Barry's Fall

    A Flyer editorial concerns the case of Megan Barry, the Nashville Mayor with once-bright political prospects who was forced by a personal scandal to resign her office this week.
    • Mar 8, 2018
  • More »

Top Commenters

© 1996-2018

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation