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The Better The Buyout The Sweeter Juice

John Rodgers reports that the Governor is having a bit of buyout remorse:
Bredesen said he likely didn’t make the $50 million buyout package “quite strong enough” to attract eligible state employees. “We could have made it richer,” Bredesen told reporters today. “If I had known what was going to happen to the economy in the future and what the impact was going to be on people’s psyches with $4 gas and those things, you might have anticipated it would take a little more to get somebody to want to leave and we might have tried to sweeten it up.” But Bredesen says he can’t change the package now because of the law. If not enough state employees apply for the buyout, layoffs would likely be necessary starting after Jan. 1.
Jul 23, 2008 2:58 PM

Newt Gingrich Thinks McCain Needs Some Color On The Ticket

From Jonathan Martin:
“What I’m afraid of is that if Sen. McCain picks one more relatively boring, normal, mainstream Republican white guy … he just makes the ticket seem boring compared to the level of energy and drive and excitement that (Democrat Barack) Obama has,” warned Gingrich, himself a silver-haired, middle-aged white politician out of central casting.
Jul 23, 2008 2:51 PM
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Bells Bend Area Councilman Flips His Flop

The Nashville Scene reported just this morning that Council Lonnell Mathews, Jr. had changed his support for the May Town Center to straight up opposition sending a letter to the Planning Commission to that effect. Now, Matthews has changed up again saying that he simply wants the plan deferred:

Reached for comment, Matthews softened on his stance and said that, because of lingering questions, his request is simply for a deferral.

Matthews said he wanted answers for where the necessary bridge over the Cumberland River would be located. He also wanted to know the cost of infrastructure for the project.

His new position is consistent with what master developer Tony Giarratana understood the councilman’s stance to be.

Jul 23, 2008 2:48 PM

Alone For 100 Years

R. Neal thinks John McCain has been marginalized:
It also seems that Bush is trying to take Iraq off the table as an election issue by suddenly suggesting there's a "horizon" beyond which U.S. troops will be home. Wonder if it also had anything to do with the Iraq PM calling for a withdrawal and now agreeing with Obama on a timetable? Either way, it appears McCain is left all alone standing in the corner with his 100 year strategy.
Jul 23, 2008 2:43 PM

A Survey Of The State Legislative Races

Joe White gives us a quick and dirty rundown of all the legislative races going on right now.
Jul 23, 2008 1:55 PM

Many Tennesseans Forced To Stimulate Their Baby Mommas Against Their Will

From the AP:
According to a Department of Human Services Commissioner news release Wednesday, the state collected a record of more than $530 million for child support in fiscal year 2008 - up from $508 million the previous year. DHS can divert stimulus payments to child support if the parent collecting the check is at least $500 behind on payments. It can also divert federal tax refunds and even lottery winnings. Over the last six months, the state has diverted more than 50,000 stimulus checks and tax refunds.
Jul 23, 2008 1:49 PM
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Don't Be Jealous

Matt Pulle is hating on Deputy Governor Stuart Brunson's Facebook activity.
Jul 23, 2008 1:47 PM
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Throwing The Switch

Via Katie Allison Granju:
DuPont Co. has joined a state initiative to build the first pilot-scale biorefinery in the U.S. that would take corncobs and switchgrass grown on Tennessee farms and convert the biomass into ethanol for fuel.
Jul 23, 2008 1:29 PM

Obama's Jelly Donut Rally

Daniel Larison doesn't see the big deal about Barack Obama advertising his appearance in Berlin in the Germans' native tongue:
If the problem with Obama’s rally in Berlin is that it’s in Berlin, you can make the case that this is unwise and will cause a backlash here at home, but are we really supposed to expect the Obama campaign to advertise the rally using English?  Isn’t it enough that Obama can’t speak German (or pretty much any other foreign language)?
Jul 23, 2008 1:21 PM

Getting It Out The Way

President Bush is officially slated to speak on the first night of the Republican national Convention:
Most presidential candidates do not attend the convention until the day they formally accept the nomination, so having Bush speak on Monday night could mean they will not meet each other in the Twin Cities.
Jul 23, 2008 1:15 PM