Tennessee has a new governor, Rep. Roe will get a second term and Johnson County will have a voice in state politics as Mountain Citys own Scotty Campbell was elected to serve in the Tennessee General Assembly next year.
Across the country, Americans came out on Tuesday, November 2, 2010, to exercise their right to vote in the nations mid-term elections. Not only did Tennessee vote for a new governor, congressmen and state representatives, but the outcome of this election will change the face of Congress.
Many Johnson Countians took advantage of early and absentee voting as 2,450 voters cast their votes during the October 13 to October 28 time period, joining the ranks of many early voters across Tennessee. Although the polls in Tennessee closed at 8:00 pm, it wasnt long before the Associated Press announced that Republican Bill Haslam had overwhelmingly won the election for the next governor of the State of Tennessee over Democrat Mike McWherter.
The margin was huge with Haslam holding 67 percent, or 736,228 votes over McWherters 337,992 with a little over 57 percent of the precincts reporting.
In the race for the Third District seat in the Tennessee State House of Representatives, Johnson Countys own Scotty Campbell was victorious over Democrat Joe Mike Akard and Independents Parke Morris and Thomas White receiving 72 percent of the vote. In a phone interview with The Tomahawk, Campbell said, I appreciate the vote of confidence I have received from the people of Johnson and Sullivan Counties. I am going to work closely with Governor Bill Haslam, our Lieutenant Governor and State Senator, Ron Ramsey, as well as other officials in Nashville. There are many needs in our region and throughout the state. I am sure we will craft a budget that meets as many needs as possible considering the current revenue situation in the state government. Having worked for three state representatives and one state senator, I want to assure the readers that exceptional constituent service will be my priority. Im just a phone call away.
The last Johnson Countian to serve in this capacity was Barton Hawkins, who was in the legislature from 1985 to 1988.
Unofficial returns indicate a 7,000 vote win, with preliminary numbers 10,782 for Campbell compared to 3,833 for Akard.
In hotly contested races in many locales, the race between both Democrats and Republicans has been tense. The Republicans needed to gain 39 seats in this election to reach the magical number of 218, the number of seats needed for the Republicans to lead the majority party and take over the House of Representatives. Congressmen serve a two-year term, and all 435 seats in the House were up for grabs. As more election results continued to come in, it had become apparent that the Republicans had gained control of the House of Representatives.
By 9:00 pm, First District Congressman Phil Roe (Republican) soundly defeated Democrat Michael Clark and Independent Kermit Steck in a landslide election and was pronounced the winner.
Very early Wednesday morning, with 186 of 247 precincts reporting, Roe received 101,730 votes, or 81 percent. Clark tallied 20,841 votes, or 17 percent. Its pretty humbling to get that many votes, said Roe, who was busy watching races across the country when the news came in.
Hunting and fishing are a large source of revenue for many of the 95 counties within the State of Tennessee. Not only does it bring thousands of jobs to Tennessee, but hunting and fishing brings much-needed sales revenue. This election, voters had the opportunity to vote yes or no on an amendment to establish a constitutional right to fish and hunt for residents of the State of Tennessee. Many people are concerned that as times changes, the right to hunt and fish could be threatened. This amendment, passed by an resounding majority of the voters, was introduced to help secure and protect this right for future generations.