Do we want to be at war?

Forget the Middle East for a moment, and think about Tennessee.  Do we want to be obstructionist, or do we want to work together to accomplish something positive?

I’ll choose the latter — there’s enough war going on elsewhere.

When the State Senate Republicans met yesterday, Ron Ramsey was elected Majority Leader (sans the vote of Mike Williams, who abstained) and Mark Norris was elected to the post of caucus chair over Randy McNally, chosen last year following the resignation of Jeff Miller.

Williams’ abstention comes as no surprise, given the harsh words that have been exchanged thus far.  It seems that Ramsey would rule by intimidation and punishment, rather than respect and persuasion.  Williams’ response (via the Chattanooga Times) is what I expected:

Sen. Williams appeared upset when asked by reporters about Sen. Ramsey’s assertions in a personal letter to him that minority Democrats are trying to play him for a “patsy” as they seek to hold onto power despite the GOP’s majority.

“I think in my 16 years of service here, I think a lot of things could be said about me. I don’t think (any) person could ever say that I’m a patsy,” Sen. Williams said, citing his fight to oppose then-Republican Gov. Don Sundquist’s proposed state income tax.

“I fought that in the best interests of the citizens of this state. … I spoke out on the Legislative Plaza when certain senators around were nowhere to be found. I think my record speaks that I’m anything but a patsy,” Sen. Williams said.

I don’t disagree with Ramsey that we should have a Republican speaker, now going into the second consecutive Republican majority in that body… I’m just not certain he’s the right one.

With McNally free of other caucus responsibilities, he would be the superior choice.  McNally is unwavering in his principles, yet able to work with others to be productive and accomplish something for Tennessee.

I don’t want a do-nothing, obstructionist Senate.  I’m tired of the name-calling, petty partisan games. It’s time to elect a Speaker who might actually accomplish something productive, and the man for the job is Randy McNally.

3 Responses to “Do we want to be at war?”

  1. on 12 Dec 2006 at 8:19 am Mike Faulk

    If you are able to communicate with Sen. Williams, would you ask him to name what GOP Senator or Senators, if any, he would vote for and support over Lt. Governor Wilder [who appointed him as Speaker pro tem] on January 9, 2007 when our new Lt. Governor is selected?

  2. on 12 Dec 2006 at 8:33 am Netmom

    I don’t expect it would change your opinion though, since you’ve already announced that you’re considering a run against him in 2008 (KnoxNews 11/27/06).

    For all of Wilder’s quirkiness — and there’s plenty — I believe that we’ve fared better under his leadership than we would have under a more partisan Speaker from either party. The party line in the State Senate is a narrow one, and we need a leader who can work with reasonable senators on both sides of the aisle.

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