The Tri-Star State | Nashville Public Radio

The Tri-Star State

What’s happening in Tennessee politics? Nashville Public Radio reporters break down what you need to know at the state capitol and beyond — in just a few minutes. 

Chas Sisk / WPLN (File photo)

Republican businessman Bill Lee wasn't known to many Tennesseans before this year's race for governor. He'd been a major fundraiser for the GOP. But he'd never run for public office of any kind.

Lee touts that as a virtue.

In the latest in a series of interviews with the six leading candidates for governor, Lee sat down with WPLN's Chas Sisk.

Courtesy of Karl Dean for Governor

Gubernatorial candidate Karl Dean is trying to present himself as a moderate. Not too business-centric for his base in the Democratic primaries, not too liberal to offend the Republican voters he'd need if he gets the nomination.

WPLN's Emily Siner spoke with the former mayor of Nashville about this delicate dance that would likely have to continue if he were elected governor.

Courtesy of Diane Black for Governor

The Republican gubernatorial candidate with the most name recognition is Congressman Diane Black, polls have shown. And if elected, she would be the first woman to hold the position of governor.

But that isn't what she talks about to voters. Instead, she touts close ties to President Trump and fierce opposition to illegal immigration.

WPLN's Emily Siner spoke with Black about what messages she's decided to emphasize in her campaign. And Emily talked through the conversation with her colleague Jason Moon Wilkins.

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

Republican Beth Harwell has the most political experience of anyone running for Tennessee governor this year but she’s trailing in the polls and far behind in fundraising. We asked Harwell about how she plans to separate herself from the field of well-financed rivals in the GOP primary.

She spoke about her legislative experience with WPLN's Emily Siner, who talks about the conversation with her colleague Jason Moon Wilkins in this episode of The Tri-Star State.

Courtesy of Fitzhugh for Tennessee

Democrat Craig Fitzhugh has been a prominent figure in Tennessee politics for more than two decades, but the state has changed around him quite a bit. When he started as a state representative, he was in the majority. Now, he's running for governor in a state that votes overwhelmingly Republican.

YouTube

Voting in Tennessee’s statewide primaries starts in less than two weeks, and that means the race is impossible to avoid without turning off the television. 

The ads may be short, but they’re where candidates spend most of their money and give insight into campaign strategy.

In the latest edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Blake Farmer and Chas Sisk talk about that ad blitz.

Diane Black for Governor via YouTube

President Donald Trump won't be on the ballot this fall, but he looms large over the races for Congress and governor.

Candidates can boost themselves with conservatives by standing close to Trump — sometimes literally. But no leader in recent history has been as polarizing as the president, so they risk alienating voters elsewhere on the political spectrum.

Nashville Mayor David Briley
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

In a busy year for elections in Tennessee, from governor to Senate to numerous state seats. Nashville mayor was not supposed to be one of them. But last week, the city elected David Briley to replace Megan Barry on a long-term basis.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

During this year's session, the Tennessee legislature passed a bill that seeks to punish "sanctuary cities," but Gov. Bill Haslam has yet to sign it. And some hope this could be the rare time he chooses to veto.

 

He’s facing pressure from those who are opposed to the measure and — from within his own party — by those who have seen anti-immigration issues be effectively used in political campaigns.

In this edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and Chas Sisk sort through why Haslam might just issue a veto.

TN Photo Services

The Tennessee legislative session came to a late-night end last week, but some of the bills approved in the final hours might not make it all the way to becoming law.

In this week's edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and statehouse reporter Chas Sisk discuss what legislation could miss the governor’s signature, as well as other lingering issues.

Pages