New Shelby County Democratic Party Chairman Harris Fights to Save His Position Amid Multiple Controversies

  Michael Harris, who won election as the new Shelby County Democratic Party chairman in April, is already facing discontent in the ranks, with the politician calling a special meeting to save his position. The Daily Memphian on Monday said Harris is the second chairman of the party, which recently re-formed. Many long-standing executive committee members left, and new people, including Harris, entered the party. During a meeting last week, the Shelby County Democratic Party’s executive committee could have chosen to either take no action on Harris or could have scheduled a meeting to specifically consider the issue, the Daily Memphian said. However, Harris agreed to call the meeting himself within 20 days to resolve the matter. The meeting’s date has not been reported. State Rep. Lamar London (D-TN-91) and State Sen. Raumesh Akbari (D-TN-29) once thought of running for Harris’ position but backed out, letting him run unopposed, the Daily Memphian said. Now, London is calling for unity ahead of the 2020 elections. Harris’ opponents are not backing down. They say that he filed for bankruptcy eight times, leading to the judge to rule he could not file again for five years, Local Memphis said. The Tennessee Star in…

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Michael Harris Says He Deserves to Be Shelby County Democratic Party Chair Despite His Law License Being Suspended

Michael Harris, the new Shelby County Democratic Party chairman, says he supports unity a week after his controversial election what with revelations of his law license having been suspended, The Daily Memphian reports. A majority of the local Grass Roots Council voted for Harris on April 6; he was unopposed. His law license has been suspended since 2017 for ethical violations that include dishonesty, lack of diligence and communication, excessive fees, improper termination, failure to perform paid services and conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice. He is also repaying $22,975 to nine former clients, The Daily Memphian said. He spoke to The Daily Memphian Politics Podcast about why he deserves to be chair. “Absolutely I should be chair,” Harris said on The Daily Memphian Politics Podcast. “The requirements for being chair do not lie in the mistakes a person has made,” he said. “The skills and abilities and understanding of the organization are more important. The life experiences that shape us and give us perspective are more important. When we look at the world we live in, people make mistakes all the time.” The podcast is available here. Harris’ statement would seem to conflict with the Shelby County Democratic…

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Democrats Censure Respected State Senator Tate For Private Remarks Made to Republican

Reginald Tate

Common sense State Sen. Reginald Tate is questioning what it means to be censured by the Shelby County Democratic Party Executive Committee, since they never gave him the courtesy of informing him. The New Tri-State Defender reported the action taken against the Democratic senator from District 33 in Shelby County. The organization contacted him for comment, but that was the first he had heard about it. “I’m censured? What does that mean? Do you know what that means? Have I lost my right to speak? Do I have to stay in my room? I can’t come out without permission? I’m censured. This is the first I have heard of it, and I don’t know what it could possibly mean,” Tate told the TSD. The Executive Committee censured Tate during its July 17 meeting, according to a press release the organization sent to the TSD. The action was in response to remarks he made prior to the start of a committee meeting on May 30. The senator’s remarks were called “vulgar,” “detrimental to the Party” and “unbecoming of a Democrat.” Tate said, “I entered the room where the Fiscal Review Committee was meeting. It’s a joint committee, and on this particular…

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Tennessee Republicans Call For Democrats To Denounce Memphis Leader’s Remarks Calling Candidates Racist

Corey Strong, Scott Golden, Karl Dean, Phil Bredesen

The Tennessee Republican Party is calling for Democrats to denounce comments of Shelby County’s party leader, who on Facebook labeled Republican candidates “demonstrably racist, homophobic and unethical.” Newsweek reported on the now-deleted comments made Saturday by Corey Strong, chairman of the Shelby County Democratic Party. Strong was elected last year to lead the state’s largest county party, which includes Memphis, after the Tennessee Democratic Party “de-certified” the group in 2016 following years of internal strife. “No matter what the Election Commission has done, the Democratic ticket needs 15k+ non-August Democrats to show up and moderate/suburban Dems to not cross over and vote for the demonstrably racist, homophobic, unethical, and unqualified Republican nominees,” Strong said on Facebook. Strong’s comments come in the wake of comments made by Maxine Waters where people should oust Trump Administration officials from public spaces. Tennessee Republican Party Chairman Scott Golden released the following statement: Democrats have reached into their failed 2016 playbook and again taken to name calling and outright lying in an attempt to score political points, all the while nothing but continued silence from Tennessee Democratic leaders Phil Bredesen, Karl Dean, Craig Fitzhugh, and Mary Mancini. When it comes to divisive and harmful rhetoric, Tennesseans deserve better…

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