Partisan standoff threatens Tenn. elections panel

On May 13, 2009, in News 2009, by Mark Norris

WATE.com
May 13, 2009

NASHVILLE (AP) — A legislative standoff over the partisan makeup of the State Election Commission could cause the panel to be shut down.

House Democrats have refused to agree to a Republican plan to reshape the commission to reflect the majorities they gained in November’s elections.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris of Collierville said Wednesday that the commission will be allowed to expire in June if the House doesn’t agree to add two Republican members to the panel.

State law requires the majority party to have three members of the commission, with two members going to the minority party.

But current members are serving four-year terms, so without legislative action Republicans would have to wait to gain their advantage.

The panel oversees state elections and appoints the members of county election commissions.

The bills are SB0370 and HB0845.

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