Gavel Down/TN (Nov 29–Dec. 2, 2016)

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It was a busy week but our minds and hearts were in Gatlinburg. 

This week Tennesseans came together to pray, donate, and volunteer to help neighbors impacted by the East Tennessee fires – and to be awed by the courage and tireless dedication of responders. 


#ICYMI Tennessee


  • "Tennessine" joins the periodic table of elements (#117) thanks to the pioneering work of scientists at UT, Vanderbilt, and Oak Ridge National Lab.
  • The U.S. House voted to name the Nashville Federal Courthouse after former TN Senator, Fred Dalton Thompson.
  • Governor Haslam had to light the capital Christmas tree from inside this year, due to rain. (High winds toppled it over in the past!) 
  • It wasn't just fires – four confirmed tornadoes ravaged middle Tennessee and claimed at least five.
  • Tennessee Department of Ed taking steps towards "personalized learning" for students.
  • Rep. David Roe [R, TN-1] from Johnson City will be the chairman of the U.S. House Veterans Affairs Committee.
  • Senate colleagues are pretty warm on the idea of Sen. Bob Corker [R, TN] as Secretary of State.
  • Rep. Steve Cohen [D, TN-9] is introduced on a bill to abolish the electoral college. (Weigh in with POPVOX).
  • Finally, a nice story: 20 Portland, TN metal plant employees will share a $420M Powerball jackpot.
  • Sen. Jack Johnson [R–Williamson County] and Rep. Glen Casada [R–Williamson County] will introduce a bill in the next General Assembly session to ban medical malpractice lawsuits.

Add your voice:

Should Tennessee end regulations that limit the expansion of public broadband to rural areas?