VIDEO: Tequila Johnson On Sec. Hargett’s Voter Reg Criminalization Bill

Federal court just BLOCKED Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett’s “SCHEME” to criminalize voter registration after the Tennessee Black Voter Project registered 90,000. Tequila Johnson of The Equity Alliance tells us they were told to turn in every form, and she wasn’t allowed to testify.

“This was about holding onto power.”

Check out the full PODCAST INTERVIEW on ITUNES.

Metro Council Sore Loser Tenpenny & Wife Now Threatening Constituents Online

There were some great results in the Metro Council runoff elections last week, but maybe none as welcome a sight as watching Ginny Welsch take down Tony Tenpenny, who had been sending out homophobic and racial fear mongering mail pieces.

Tenpenny got thumped, and thumped good.

Apparently that didn’t sit well with him, so he and his wife have now taken to social media to threaten constituents with voter fraud and call them all sorts of names.

Here he is threatening people with unfounded allegations of  voter fraud:

Here he is calling someone a “PANSY A**” and challenging someone to meet him in person… while his wife calls someone “chicken shit” and a “scared MF”.

Class acts!

Looks like District 16 made the right call. We’re excited for Ginny, and are confident  she will serve Nashville well. Bullet dodged.

 

NEW VIDEO: “FOUR YEARS OF Z!” Nashville Elects First Muslim Zulfat Suara, Makes History

Watch Zulfat Suara react to her history-making win, saying she’s proud of her diverse support-base which she takes as a mandate for the council to help create a “NASHVILLE FOR ALL”.

VIDEO: “HATE WILL NEVER WIN” – TIRRC Votes Day of Action On Immigration

Watch a group of immigrants in Nashville turn out to vote for immigrants running for office in Nashville.

Election Day is September 12th!

Anonymous 16th District Postcard Accuses Candidate of Socialism

(Editor’s note: With the Metro run-off election less than two weeks away and early voting in its second week, The Tennessee Holler will take an in-depth look at several of the hotly contested Metro Council run-off races. In the second of the series, we review the race in District 16, which encompasses the Woodbine and Glencliff neighborhoods and portions of  Nolensville Road.)

Salacious rumors, hardball tactics and outright gossip go with run-off elections like football and fall.

But, based on comments on the Facebook page, “16th District Nashville” page, the postcard that landed in Metro Council District 16 was distasteful beyond the norm to many voters.

“This is shameful and embarrassing for our district, regardless of who paid for it,” said Jamie Hall, in  response to a Facebook post about the mail piece. “I hope both campaigns denounce this for the trash this is.”

The postcard, pictured below, was sent for the apparent benefit of Tony Tenpenny, a former Metro Councilman who faces Ginny Welsch in the run-off election Sept. 12, and mayoral candidate John Cooper.

One side of this postcard, apparently supporting Metro Council Candidate Tony Tenpenny, infers his opponent is a Socialist.

Side two of the mail piece, showing the illegal ‘disclaimer’ at bottom left.

Headlined “Progressive Socialism,” one side of the mailer prominently features a rainbow, a symbol of the LGBT community, above icons representing the alleged destruction of Fairgrounds Nashville, Nashville as a sanctuary city, an understaffed police force and proposed small houses for homeless in the community. It further compares Welsch and Mayor Briley to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York. Ocasio-Cortez has been an outspoken progressive since her election in Nov. 18.

The second side urges voters to go to the polls for Tenpenny and Cooper and does not have legal disclaimer, as political mailers are required to have by Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA Title 2, 2-19-1920.)

Katie Lentile, communications director for the Cooper campaign, said Cooper staff was unaware of the mailer until receiving emails from constituents.

“Our campaign was not aware of this,” Lentile said. “We are not making any endorsements in this district’s race.”

When reached by phone, Tenpenny also denied knowledge of the mailer.

A comment on the “16th District Nashville” Facebook page about the mail piece.

Tenpenny has become something of a perpetual candidate for Metro Council in District 16, first running in 2007 against incumbent Anna Page, to whom he lost. In that campaign, signs with rainbow backgrounds saying “Gays and Lesbians for Anna Page” were placed in District 16 without authorization from the Page campaign and lacking a disclaimer. (Out and About, July 14, 2007)

He ran again in 2011, beating Page and serving one term until Mike Freeman defeated him in 2015.

Welsch placed first of three candidates in the August 1 primary with 41.2 percent and Tenpenny came in second with 37 percent.

In addition to Tenpenny’s campaigns for and service on Metro Council, he has compiled a lengthy record of questionable behavior. In 2014, he was alleged to have interfered in officer elections for the Glencliff Neighborhood Association and in 2007, the Nashville Post reported his history of arrests dating to 1984 and a 2002 assault charge.

The run-off election is Sept. 12.

District 13 Drama, Part II: Voter Registration Changes Raise Questions About Dixon’s Move to District

(Editor’s note: With the Metro run-off election less than two weeks away and early voting in its second week, The Tennessee Holler will take an in-depth look at several of the hotly contested Metro Council run-off races. In the first of the series, we take a look at District 13, which runs from Nashville International Airport south to Antioch.)

Keenan Andrew Dixon, one of two candidates in the run-off for Metro Council District 13, officially moved into the district in which he seeks a council seat on Feb. 5, 2019, according to documents received from the Davidson County Election Commission.

However, the Election Commission requires candidates for district council be residents of the district in which they run for a minimum of six months. Given the general election was August 1, Dixon would have needed to show he lived in the district before February 1 to be eligible for office in District 13.

The Holler called Dixon to ask for comment and left a message. Dixon had not returned the call at the time this story went live.

Dixon originally registered to vote in Davidson County in March 2018 at a residence in Council District 15. In January 2019, he updated his voter registration to reflect a move to a single family property he owns – 214 Emery Drive – also in District 15. Then, less than a month later, he again updated his registration to show a move to the District 13 apartment.

Andrew Dixon’s original voter registration in Davidson County from March 2018.

This isn’t the first time questions have been raised about whether Dixon lives in District 13. As we reported last week, Dixon owns multiple single family properties in District 15 but allegedly moved his family, including his wife and two children, into an apartment in District 13, in February 2019.

Dixon’s change of address to a second District 15 residence on January 11, 2019.

February 5, 2019 change of voter registration showing Dixon now living in District 13.

After we posted that story Friday, we obtained records from the Nashville Electric Service showing rates of usage for the apartment in which Dixon allegedly lives.

NES turned power on in the apartment in Dixon’s name Feb. 6, one day after he switched his voter registration address. The Holler reviewed a history of usage in the apartment and found that bills under the prior resident were $109 in July 2018 and $101 in June 2018 at peak summer usage. By contrast, Dixon’s bill for July 2019 was $33.95  and for June, $33.45.

According to NES records, Dixon also had power turned on for yet another property – 214 Emery Drive – on March 8, 2019. Usage records at that address are consistent with someone living there during a hot summer: $216 for July 2019 and $149 for June.

The Holler has now left several messages for Dixon. Pending explanation, a credible case can made for a challenge should he win on Sept. 12.

Dixon faces off against Russ Bradford.

Metro Council Run-Off Races: District 13 and the Case of the Questionable Address

(Editor’s note: With the Metro run-off election less than two weeks away and early voting in its second week, The Tennessee Holler will take an in-depth look at several of the hotly contested Metro Council run-off races. In the first of the series, we take a look at District 13, which runs from Nashville International Airport south to Antioch.)

The rumors about Andrew Dixon’s residency began circulating during the heat of the summer general election campaign.

Dixon, one of three candidates for the District 13 seat being vacated by Holly Huezo, listed his address on financial disclosure forms and in voter files as an apartment building in the district. Nothing wrong with that: Plenty of people live in apartments.

But Dixon, married and with two young children, has purchased two houses in the last year – in District 15.

Dixon and his wife closed on the purchase of one house in the McGavock area, a three bedroom, three bath, in October 2018.  That house is appraised at $304,000. They closed on the purchase of a second home, also a three bed, three bath valued at $269,000, in March 2019.

The apartment building in District 13 in which council candidate Andrew Dixon reports he lives.

So, why, several sources asked when they contacted the Holler, would a guy with two roomy houses choose to move his family into an apartment in a different council district and run for office there, instead of his home district?

The questions about Dixon’s residency are relevant because the Metro Election Commission specifies a candidate for a district Metro Council seat must be a resident of the district in which they run for a minimum of six months. 

We called Dixon twice to clear up confusion but got his voice mail and no return call.

As the Holler reported in July, Dixon is supported by Davette Blalock, a two-term Metro Council member and 2016 Trump backer as well as conservative former council member Roy Dale. The pair started a PAC together, the generic-sounding Good Government PAC, which has spent no money except on mail pieces supporting Dixon.

One of Andrew Dixon’s two houses, this one purchased in October 2018.

Russ Bradford, who placed first on August 1 in the three-way council race, is openly gay and has earned a number of endorsements from organizations as diverse as the conservative-leaning Nashville Firefighters Union (IAFF Local 140) and Victory Fund, a national organization focused on electing people from the LGBTQ community to office.

Bradford also declined to make any comments on this story.

Dale has a history of anti-gay comments. In his 2003 Metro Council At-Large race, he sent mailers disparaging his opponents for supporting measures to protect LGBTQ Metro workers.

Without comment from Dixon, we are left to speculate on why he lists an apartment complex in District 13 as his address despite owning two homes in District 15 and why he didn’t run for office in his home district.

Draw your own conclusions. If Dixon calls us back. the Holler will update the story with his response.

ROWE: Rep. Roe Can’t Pretend to Care About Veterans And Stay Silent On Military Children Citizenship Issue

“You can be anything you want when you grow up! You might even be the President one day!”

These are words military parents whose children are born abroad will no longer be able to say. You see, one of the requirements to run for President is to be a natural-born US citizen, and that’s a requirement military children born overseas will no longer meet.

Rather than being granted “birthright” citizenship, as every child born to US servicemen and government employees serving abroad has been granted for as long as we’ve had families doing so, they’ll now have to be naturalized after the fact. This change will make them explicitly different from being American citizens by birth.

Obviously not every military child is going to grow up and run for President, but that’s just one of many ways this one decision will be a detriment to every future child born to our brave men and women overseas.

When our members are serving abroad, they face unique challenges – interacting with different cultures, integrating their families with their small piece of America that is the base, and a multitude of other factors that aren’t part of a normal citizen’s life. These are all hurdles people expect when they volunteer to serve our nation.

What they don’t expect, however, is to have those challenges compounded by our own country’s insistence on xenophobic and otherwise cruel policies. But that’s exactly what’s happening. In addition to all the other problems being overseas presents, this reversal on birthright citizenship will force them to either go through the hassle of petitioning for naturalization of their children while overseas, or be required to get a travel visa – no small task, especially on short notice in the event an emergency arises – to bring their own biological children to their rightful homes.

The most important factor in all this, however, is who specifically this targets.

The current laws allow children born to two native US citizens (or long-established naturalized ones) birthright citizenship, regardless of their actual birthplace. In other words, this is another overt attempt to discriminate against immigrants. It places an undue burden on people who’ve pledged their loyalty to our country, and makes their lives that much harder if they want to have a family while they’re serving their new country.

This decision is blatantly anti-immigrant, by design. Any person who considers themselves a patriotic American should be appalled by such a decision. It spits in the face of all America claims to represent as a nation, and is just another way of discouraging legal immigrants from coming to our country.

The silence on this from Tennessee’s federal representatives is deafening. Even Phil Roe, the House Veterans’ Affairs chairman, has been completely mum on the subject. For all his standard crowing about all the “great things” he fights for on behalf of veterans, he seems to be prepared to let this decision go completely unchallenged.

This is unacceptable. Phil, on behalf of every single active duty member and veteran in Tennessee, of which I am proud to count myself as one: step up to the plate on this. You can’t pretend to care about veterans or their families ever again if you do nothing to push for a reversal on this policy. You’re an embarrassment to your seat, your post on the VA committee, and our state.

Chris Rowe is an Air Force veteran challenging congressman Phil Roe as a Democratic candidate in TN-1 in 2020. Learn more about Chris and his campaign for congress HERE.

Why Won’t Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland & Former Mayor Willie Herenton Debate?

No matter how you vote, we should all be able to agree debates are an essential part of democracy. Every candidate for every office should stand before the people and make their case for why they deserve your vote.

In 2018 we saw a number of Republican candidates across Tennessee refuse to debate their Democrat counterparts – Mark Green, Brandon Ogles, Scott Desjarlais, to name a few.

As it turns out, Republicans aren’t the only ones who play this game.

Nashville has just seen two its mayoral candidates – Mayor David Bailey, and John Cooper – debate each other. But a debate in the Memphis was just canceled, apparently because former mayor Willie Herenton declined to participate, which gave current mayor Jim Strickland all the excuse he needed to pull out.

Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer and Lemichael Wilson were ready to go, but the mayors, it seems, were not. From WMC Action News 5:

Herenton would only say he “respectfully” declined to partipicate. In response, Strickland’s campaign opted out.

“without the top challenger in the race participating, in informed and balanced debate could not happen,” said a spokesperson for Strickland’s campaign.

News 5 goes on to relay Sawyer and Wilson’s comments.

Sawyer:

“By refusing debate — no matter the circumstances — Mayor Strickland and Herenton are denying taxpayers the right to hear where we all stand on the issues and make an informed choice on who will lead our city over the next (four) years.”

Wilson:

“It’s unfortunate that the citizens won’t have an opportunity to engage with mayoral candidates in order to share their concerns or to hear the candidates’ visions to address their concerns.”

Columnist Tonyaa Weathersbee of the Memphis Commercial Appeal agrees, saying:

“The two top contenders for city’s top job are choosing convenience over courage… If Strickland and Herenton can’t handle a debate, can they handle Memphis’ real issues?”

Sawyer has been running an inspired campaign with a lot of grassroots momentum, just recently drawing a mention in a tweet from Hillary Clinton. Could her footsteps be what is causing the mayors not to want to stand on a stage next to one another?

There’s no excuse for this type of behavior. These men are robbing the people of Memphis of the opportunity to hear from those who seek to govern them. It’s cowardice, and Strickland and Herenton both need to feel the pressure.

ACTION STEPS:

Email Willie Herenton HERE, Reach out on Facebook or Twitter, and call Dorchelle Spence for him: 901.628.7760

Email Strickland HERE Reach out on Facebook or Twitter, and call him: 901.636.6000

Post and tag them on social media asking them “WHY WON’T YOU DEBATE?” with the hashtag #MemphisMayorDebates and #DebateMeMane.

Let’s fix this together.

Rep. John Rose Says Health Care Not a Right

TN GOP congressman John Rose for Tennessee says if we make health care a right we’ll turn into Venezuela or Cuba… Doesn’t explain how all other developed nations with universal health care have avoided that fate.

He says universal health coverage would make us “not free” — Sorry Canada, France, England, etc.. y’all aren’t “free” according to Rep. John Rose!

LINK: http://herald-citizen.com/stories/rose-hospital-admins-talk-health-care,36359