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Politics

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Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

During this year's session, the Tennessee legislature passed a bill that seeks to punish "sanctuary cities," but Gov. Bill Haslam has yet to sign it. And some hope this could be the rare time he chooses to veto.

 

He’s facing pressure from those who are opposed to the measure and — from within his own party — by those who have seen anti-immigration issues be effectively used in political campaigns.

In this edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and Chas Sisk sort through why Haslam might just issue a veto.

TN Photo Services

Narrowing the education gap will be one challenge facing whoever becomes Tennessee's next governor.

Students in the state are doing better in math and reading, but black and Hispanic students aren't improving as fast as their white counterparts.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

There's a persistent disagreement between Nashville Mayor David Briley and Director of Schools Shawn Joseph: The mayor did not include the full funding request from the schools in his proposed budget, and recently issued statements from the two leaders show they're at odds.

David Briley
File / WPLN


Nashville Mayor David Briley says he's setting to work on a new plan for mass transit in Nashville following this week's defeat of a $5.4 billion proposal featuring light rail.

Briley says he's already spoken with some opponents of the failed transit plan, and he intends to push forward with improvements to the city's bus system. He says Nashville's competitiveness depends on the city having a working transportation system.

Emily Siner / WPLN

With 13 candidates running for mayor in the next three weeks, it’s a challenge both for residents to keep track of them — and for the candidates themselves to find a way to stand out in a crowded race.

At a mayoral forum last night at the Nashville Public Library, moderators from the Tennessean and WSMV tried to corral the group by giving them a minute each to answer questions.

Emily Siner / WPLN

The field of Nashville mayoral candidates is thick: Thirteen people have filed the necessary paperwork to run for Nashville's top office.

They veer from the unorthodox  — a master barber, a former limo driver — to the more traditional lawyers and politicians.

More: WPLN's Complete Coverage Of The 2018 Mayoral Election

To familiarize voters with the menagerie of contenders, WPLN put together a quick and dirty cheat sheet. Who are these people? What are their big ideas?

vote election
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

Beyond the transit proposal, Democratic voters in Davidson County also had a long list of primary elections to decide.

In a highly watched contest, prosecutor Ana Escobar bested former Metro Councilman Nick Leonardo for the nomination to a General Sessions judge position. Leonardo had been appointed to the seat in January, but Escobar was favorite of the Nashville Bar Association and used her expertise on domestic violence as a central point in her campaign. The General Sessions Court Division III focuses on domestic violence.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN


Now that it's decided that Nashville won't expand its transit system, the head of the MTA says his team must continue looking for other ways to improve.

 

Steve Bland expects to analyze the election results and come back to voters again. Bland says he's "absolutely certain" that traffic congestion is getting worse, so whatever proposal comes next will likely have the attention of even more Nashvillians.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Nashville voters resoundingly rejected the multi-billion-dollar transit proposal Tuesday — telling officials to find another way to respond to the city’s growth and traffic congestion.

In the end, it wasn't even close. Some 64 percent of Nashville voters went against the plan. That's in an election that drew a surprising turnout of more than 120,000 people.

I Voted sticker Tennessee
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

Voters in Williamson County may notice a prominent warning when they go to the polls today: A sign implying that only certain people are allowed to vote in the primaries.

It's the result of a dispute between the Williamson County GOP and two Democratic candidates over how to interpret Tennessee's murky law about who gets to participate in primaries. Voters don't register by party, but the law does say voters need either to be a "bona fide member and affiliated with" the party whose primary they seek to vote in, or to be willing to declare an oath of allegiance.

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