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Tennessee’s change in leadership will pull it further to the right | Opinion

While still Republican, the state’s new leaders are considerably more conservative than previous iterations. Meanwhile, the State Senate may find itself in the potentially uncomfortable role of moderator. Blackburn poised to become a leader Not only is Blackburn the first woman elected to the U.S. Senate from Tennessee, she's also the most conservative statewide office holder the state has elected in modern times. He was elected in a stunning victory as a conservative outsider and businessman in the image of President Trump, but with more tact and grace. On all accounts, Lee doesn’t just talk the talk, he also walks it. Tea Party set up Casada for victory While you rarely hear a candidate touting an endorsement from Tea Party groups nowadays, even in Republican primaries, the table was set long ago with supporters of Casada. McNally will make Senate a moderating force Senate Speaker Randy McNally is, above all else, cool, calm and collected. At times, conservatives have found it difficult to pass some of the more red-meat-type legislation through the State’s upper chamber. For this reason, the Lee Administration could end up relying heavily on McNally to help moderate policy if deemed necessary. The Republican Party is a big tent, and everyone plays an important role.

Taylor Swift breaks political silence, backs Tennessee Dems

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Music superstar Taylor Swift says she's voting for Tennessee's Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen, breaking her long-standing refusal to discuss anything politics. Swift posted on Instagram Sunday evening acknowledging she's previously shied from voicing her political opinions. But she says several personal and public events over the past two years have prompted her to speak out. Swift has faced criticism for not speaking about political issues despite having a global platform. The pop star — a Tennessee native — slammed Republican U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn in her lengthy post, writing the Republican candidate's voting record "terrifies me." Swift says she's voting for Bredesen for Senate and Democrat Jim Cooper for the House. Swift didn't acknowledge Bredesen's recent endorsement of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, but said people may never find a candidate or party with whom they agree completely on every issue. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

2018’s Top Reads: Politics

The year is only (or already?) halfway in the books but there has been a lot of news to digest — even by the new Nashville's standards. This holiday week, we're lining up our best-read stories from the first half of 2018 in eight categories. Below are the biggest pieces from the political arena. Report: Poll shows governor race closer than presumed Pro-Trump group finds support for Blackburn over Corker 2. Bill Lee’s business interests could complicate run for governor Republican candidate’s home services company holds statewide maintenance contract 3. Barry admits to affair with head of security Updated with details from Thursday night’s press conference, calls for investigation 4. Head of mayor's security detail retires No explanation yet about veteran officer's abrupt departure 5. Pro-life Democrat running for Black’s seat Also: Veterans file to run in 2nd, 3rd Districts 6. Barry resigns after pleading guilty to theft Briley taking reins, says resignation 'will enable us to regain focus' 7.

The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Macron America Great Again

Today in 5 Lines After a 34-hour manhunt, authorities said the suspect in a deadly shooting at a Waffle House in Nashville, Tennessee, was taken into custody. Travis Reinking is accused of killing four people at the restaurant early Sunday morning. The Senate is expected to confirm him later this week. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that the U.S. has seen “some steps in the right direction” in talks with North Korea, but there is still “a long way to go.” North Korea announced on Friday that they were putting an end to their missile tests. Police said nine people were killed and 16 others injured after a van plowed into pedestrians on a sidewalk in Toronto. The driver is now in custody. Today on The Atlantic ‘The Hardest Job in the World’: The president’s list of duties has grown significantly since the country’s founding, writes John Dickerson in our May cover story. Maybe we’re expecting too much of President Trump. The Future Is Here: After years of traveling through parts of America that don’t receive much attention from the press, James Fallows writes that, “even as the country is becoming worse in obvious ways—angrier, more divided, less able to do the basic business of governing itself—it is becoming distinctly better on a range of other indicators that are harder to perceive.” Is the Senate Bill to Protect Robert Mueller Constitutional? : It could come down to the Supreme Court to decide.