They've moved my desk four times already this year, and I used to be over by the window, and I could see the squirrels, and they were married.The TN Report goes and hangs out with Kent Williams in his swanky new office:
“I moved up in there in that little hole, that’s what I call it,” said Williams, an independent from Carter County. Granted, the mail is no longer being delivered to that ground floor office in the War Memorial Building, which is attached to Legislative Plaza where most public meetings take place. Postal services have moved to the basement of the plaza during the legislative off-season. But Williams’ new digs are pretty lonely. His closest neighbor is a fellow former House speaker, Rep. Jimmy Naifeh, D-Covington, and the rest of the floor is mainly occupied by staff offices.
Jan 21, 2011 11:26 AM
The Tennessee General Assembly's website, capitol.tn.gov, has received a 2010 Government-to-Citizen Achievement Award from the Center for Digital Government, an organization that each year recognizes outstanding agency and department websites and projects.
“For the second consecutive year the Tennessee General Assembly website has received an award for being the best legislative website in the nation,” said Speaker Kent Williams. “These awards demonstrate the hard work which went into our redesign has paid off, and also exhibit the transparency our website provides to the citizens of our state.”The website was honored for "its ease of navigation, depth of content and openness, and availability of information to the public," according to a news release.
Oct 18, 2010 12:07 PM
Race to become state's next Speaker of the House heating up
Jun 30, 2010 8:49 PM
On Thursday, I was asked on Facebook what I thought about Jason Mumpower's decision not to seek re-election to the state House. It was a simple question but one I really hadn't considered. Sure, I had wondered about the whys and considered the political implications of the decision but what I thought, what I really thought, hadn't entered my mind. The news moves so fast sometimes it's hard to find the time or inclination to really consider what you think about something. Not instant analysis. Not pith commentary. Just thought. So what do I think? I think it's sad. Not because I have any deep personal bond with Mumpower (I don't) and not because I feel as though we are ideological soulmates (we're not). It's sad because, while the decision was surprising, I can understood why he did it. Mumpower is a young and ambitious man. He entered the legislature at 23 and by the age of 35 he was on the cusp of becoming Speaker. And in the blink of an eye, it was all gone. Now Jason Mumpower probably handled the events of Jan. 13, 2009 about as well and as gracefully as anyone could expect. But the reality is there was never any coming back for Mumpower. Often, you hear that what happened to Mumpower on that day could have happened to anyone. Maybe that's true. Maybe whoever the GOP caucus nominee was would have been betrayed by Williams. But the fact is, on the day in question, the nominee wasn't anyone -- it was Jason Mumpower. Mumpower can say that Thursday's decision had nothing to do with losing that Speaker's election, that it is "old history." But how can what happened on Thursday not be about what happened on that day? If what happened on Jan. 13, 2009 had not have happened, Mumpower would be the Speaker of House today. He would be maneuvering and looking for ways to consolidate and extend his power. He wouldn't be abdicating his seat. There just isn't anyway of getting around that. And that's the sad part. The precariousness of power. Leadership is a strange and delicate beast. When you are leader you are assuming a lot of responsibility. Responsibly not only for others but for the unknown and the unavoidable. Monday morning quarterbacks can go back and game the situation out and think of ways that Mumpower could have kept Williams in the fold, but the fact was Williams had always been an outsider in his party. Members of the caucus had worked against him in more than one elections. Kent Williams was in many senses a land mine, lying in wait, detonated by circumstance. But Williams went off under Mumpower's watch so he is responsible. Power is about perception as much as anything. In the movie Miller's Crossing, there is a very poignant moment when a gangster's right hand man explains the delicate nature of power. "You run this town because people think you do. Once they stop thinking it, you stop running it." Titles are important but real power seldom comes solely from them. On the day Kent Williams was elected speaker, Jason Mumpower lost something he couldn't ever get back. He lost that intangible quality that leaders need. He was the same man with the same title as before -- but something was different. Mumpower's image had been tarnished ever so slightly. The balloon had popped. Those he led began to see him differently. Mumpower, despite his protestations, was probably not going to be chosen as his party's leader next year and he probably was not going to be their nominee for Speaker. I suppose he could have simply taken a seat as just a another member of the General Assembly, but a man driven by ambition like Mumpower has to have something to work toward. There was simply no longer a future for Mumpower in the House. No, I don't think there was any kind of scandal. Rumors like that, in this day and age, come with the territory, especially for those within a certain age bracket, but that does not mean they have any truth to them. Some people who get as close as Mumpower did to a dream and fall short become obsessed by it. The continued chase becomes like a drug. Long after it has become impossible to achieve the dream, the dreamer keeps after it, longing for that feeling they had when they first tasted the ambition. To have the courage to simply put a dream aside is bold and admirable. However, the sense of sadness remains. The fact that our perceptions of people are so fragile is troubling. One minute we perceive someone one way and the next minute, through little or no fault of their own, we perceive them differently -- and there's no going back. It's disconcerting. But it's also unavoidable. It's human nature.
Mar 28, 2010 7:55 PM
The press release following the big news:
State Representative and House Majority Leader Jason Mumpower (R-Bristol) announced Thursday that he will not seek re-election this November to the 3rd State House District. In a statement to the Tennessee House of Representatives on the House floor Thursday morning, Mumpower expressed his gratitude to the people he has represented in the 3rd District during his 14 years of service in Nashville. He was only 23 and was a recent graduate from King College when he won his first term two-year term as a state representative. “I am so grateful to the people in Sullivan and Johnson Counties for their support of me,” Mumpower said. “It has been an honor to serve them, and I have thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. I’ve lost a lot of hair and put what I can only guess is more than 270,000 interstate miles on my cars driving from Bristol to Nashville to serve the 3rd District. I have made many, many friends, and I thank all of you for those friendships.” In 2008, Mumpower led House Republicans to the first ever House Republican majority in the history of Tennessee. He was elected by his colleagues in December 2006 to serve as Republican Leader, and was re-elected to the position in 2008. Mumpower was first elected to the Tennessee House in 1996. “Jason Mumpower is my representative, my longtime friend, and my ally,” said Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey. “I’m proud he led the House to its first Republican majority in history. I have been proud to call him my representative for these past years.” In his remarks to the House, Mumpower told the story of an interview with Bill Watterson, the creator and writer of the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes. At the height of its popularity, Watterson simply stopped writing Calvin and Hobbes without explanation. Fifteen years later, in a rare interview when Watterson was asked why he stopped, he replied, “It’s always better to leave the party early.” “Leader Mumpower has led the caucus with distinction for four years,” said House Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada. “He has held together this caucus through some very difficult times. I have been fortunate to be able to work alongside him and to call him a friend.” Mumpower said he looks forward to the rest of this session of the 106th General Assembly. He added he “looks forward to the challenges ahead,” after his current service comes to a close. “The benefit of having been first elected at the young age of 23 is that I could serve for 14 years here at the legislature and still be able to start a new phase in my career before I turn 40,” Mumpower said. Mumpower will serve out his term through the end of 2010. A new representative for the 3rd House District will be elected this November.See the full release including comments from legislators and career highlights right here.
Mar 25, 2010 12:01 PM
Rep. Jason Mumpower, just now during personal orders, announced from the well of the General Assembly that he will not be running for re-election to his state house seat. Noting his 14 years of service, Mumpower says he is "not giving up the fight but looking forward to new challenges." Having served in the legislature for nearly a third of his life, Mumpower said he wants to take the opportunity to "start a new phase of his life" before he turns 40. Mumpower, the Republican Majority Leader, was the Republican caucus's candidate for Speaker in 2009. His anticipated and expected election was thwarted when the Democratic caucus nominated GOP Rep. Kent Williams. Williams joined with 49 members of the opposite party to elect himself Speaker. Following Mumpower's remarks from the well, Williams had kind words for Mumpower while standing in the very spot Mumpower had hoped to be standing just over a year ago. "We appreciate your service and wish you the best in what you choose to do in the future. Thank you for your wonderful service," said Williams. SEE ALSO: VIDEO at TnReport.com Hank Hayes Tom Humphrey Erik Schelzig Speak To Power InSession Jeff Woods Tre Hargett Craig Fitzhugh Josh Smith WCYB Stacey Campfield
Mar 25, 2010 10:02 AM
'Myriad of other commitments' leads head of group that selects judicial nominees to walk away
Jan 26, 2010 11:50 AM
We present to you our annual awards and an irreverent look back at the year in local and state politics
Oct 23, 2009 12:25 PM
New entity created by legislature to evaluate judges has a full roster of appointees
Sep 2, 2009 11:16 AM
UPDATE: Director of Legislative Administration Connie Ridley tells Post Politics that Graves was not fired or dismissed. A former intern, Graves agreed to stay on as a temporary hourly legislative employee to help out in offices that needed it. Graves indicated to Ridley that he would be leaving the legislature in that capacity to pursue full-time work. Jeff Woods reveals that the Democratic legislative staff member who sent an email making fun of several minority groups has been dismissed by the House Speaker:
According to sources, House Speaker Kent Williams, acting at the request of Democratic leaders, already has dismissed the intern, who has been identified as Blake Graves who was working in the office of Rep. Karen Camper, D-Memphis. "It was offensive to Asians," says our source, just to mention one of the pictures. Democrats think they can claim the upper hand in this little contretemps because their staffer has been fired, unlike the Republican offender, Sherri Goforth, who was merely reprimanded.The graphics contained in the emails are available for viewing here. The firing of Graves comes only days after the revelation that a Republican staffer, Sherri Goforth, had sent out a racially inflammatory email about President Barack Obama. Although Graves has spent his tenure in the legislature working for Democratic legislators Reps. Joe Towns and Barbara Camper, he was honored in a resolution earlier this year recognizing his affiliation with the College Republicans. A legislative intern from January until April of this year, Graves became a "Temporary Legislative Assistant" just last month making him a state employee. Immediately after Graves sent the offending email on Monday (the very same day the Goforth email hit the blogs), he sent a follow up email to the list of both Democratic and Republican staffers the email was sent to. "Everyone, please excuse that e-mail I sent, I totally missed the words used in it. So please accept my apologies for that e-mail. Nonetheless, have a great Monday!" said Graves to his list of recipients. SEE ALSO: Liberadio Braisted Cup Of Joe Left Wing Cracker
Jun 17, 2009 2:41 PM
- ALEX B FRUIN INHERITANCE TRUST; CANDACE F STEFANSIC INHERITANCE TRUST; CANDANCE F STEFANSIC INHERITANCE TRUST; FRUIN, ALEX B TRUSTEE; FRUIN ALEX B INHERITANCE TRUST; STEFANSIC, CANDACE F TRUSTEE; STEFANSIC CANDACE F INHERITANCE TRUST; STEFANSIC CANDANCE F INHERITANCE TRUST
- ROSS, BRIDGETT D
- COOKE, ETHEN LANYARD TRUSTEE; COOKE, ETHEN LEWIS ESTATE
- JACOBS, JESSICA ALEXANDRA; JACOBS, ERIKA BESS