Duncan to retire, Burchett to announce Saturday

Sandra ClarkGossip and Lies

Wow. What an eventful week in politics.

U.S. Rep. John J. “Jimmy” Duncan said he won’t seek reelection in 2018. His decision saved local Republicans a divisive primary and, this Saturday, Mayor Tim Burchett will reveal the worst-kept secret in town. He’s running for Congress in 2018.

President Trump’s new communications director, Anthony Scaramucci, got confused about how to put a conversation off the record and was fired after 10 days for vulgar language and personal attacks in an interview with newyorker.com. He blamed the reporter.

Garrison Keillor, in The Washington Post, says Trump fulfills an important role: “It’s cheap entertainment for us, and in the end, it simply doesn’t matter. What matter are tomatoes.” And he then writes an ode to the juicy reds.

Randy Neal, writing on knoxviews.com, says their calculators are broken. He’s talking about Gov. Bill Haslam and Blount County Mayor Ed Mitchell. Both spoke last week about the gasoline tax increase that wasn’t a tax increase. “It’s amazing how they can say stuff like this with a straight face and expect people to believe it.”

Haslam: “This is the largest tax cut in the history of Tennessee, and it funds 962 projects across all 95 counties.”

Mitchell: “… It was not a tax increase. It was a tax cut. That’s the best of both worlds where I live.”

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham at various times called Sen. Mitch McConnell’s efforts to repeal Obamacare “half-assed,” “politically, the dumbest thing in history” and “a disaster.” Then he voted with McConnell every time.

Mayor Madeline Rogero should have deflected the request to remove a Bible verse at the KPD headquarters. “Dear ( ): Thanks for writing. We’re looking at this. Yours.”

Carson Dailey is dining with fellow county commissioners, but he says he’s not campaigning for commission chair or vice chair. He’s interested in representing the commission on the board of The Development Corporation and on the advisory committee for Parks & Rec. He’s also lobbying for more parking at the South Senior Center.

R. Larry Smith cannot get respect. He raised over $100,000 in his quest for an at-large seat on the county commission in 2018, but the daily newspaper omitted his race from a report on campaign finances. The week-late correction was lost in more current news.

Brad Fullington is running for Congress. Fullington played football and baseball for Central High School and lists his occupation as “pro athlete wealth.” Check him out on Facebook.

Renee Hoyos, longtime executive with the Tennessee Clean Water Network, is exploring a run for Congress as well. Hold onto your hat. Local politics will get even weirder.


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