With the polls closed in Tennessee and the votes tallied, the results are a mixed bag for Tennesseans and the LGBT community alike.
Ordinance No. 12781, which was passed by the Chattanooga City Council and aimed to offer domestic partner benefits to city workers, faced a veto referendum. Conservative voters in Tennessee’s fourth largest city turned out to defeat the ordinance, with two thirds voting against. With 100% of precincts reporting, the count is 13,684 AGAINST partner benefits, and 8,184 FOR.
As Channel 3 in Chattanooga reports, YES Chattanooga campaign director Spencer White released this statement: "Fairness will prevail, and this fight continues until the voice of every Tennessean can be heard. I want to thank all the volunteers and local leaders who helped fight to defend a fair and equitable Chattanooga, as well as statewide and national organizations like the Tennessee Equality Project, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the Human Rights Campaign, who played a vital role in this effort.”
HRC commented as well.
The infamous senator from Knoxville, subject of the recent local hit Casey Stampfield: The Musical, Stacey Campfield was unseated in his party’s primary by a similar margin, losing to surgeon Richard Briggs. Briggs, according to WBIR Knoxville, credits a good campaign team and a conservative platform as keys to his victory, though he acknowledged that people were ready for a change. In this election, Briggs’s opponent was his secret weapon.
Check out Metro Pulse's timeline of Campfield's "greatest hits."
And you've seen Campfield's response to it all, right?
The statewide fight over whether to retain the state Supreme Court has come to an end, with an almost certain “retain” for all three judges. With over fifty percent of precincts reporting, nearly 60% of voters are favoring “retain.” The Supreme Court election has garnered a lot of national attention due to the big money being funneled into the race by conservatives nationwide, and the news that it was being partially bankrolled by Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey’s own campaign war-chest.
In his own congratulation, Ramsey couldn’t help but be self-congratulatory over his role in the divisive race: “they weren’t the only victors — they join the citizens of Tennessee who gained a fuller appreciation of the role of the judiciary in the state of Tennessee.” The rest of his statement can be found here.
Last month, O&AN endorsed a number of candidates in various local elections. We're happy now to report positive returns for General Sessions Judges Rachel Bell, Melissa Blackburn, and Lynda Jones. As well, we offer congratulations to Tyrese Hunter.