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Tennessee's unsolved civil rights crimes are getting a fresh look.

Legislators are asking lawyers to dig into the state's history of lynchings, firebombings and other racial violence perpetrated during Jim Crow and the Civil Rights Movement. Some cases may even be recommended for prosecution.

Chas Sisk / WPLN (File photo)

Activists calling for the removal of a prominent Confederate statue are now in for a lengthy wait.

Gov. Bill Haslam said earlier this week that he believes a bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest on display in the Capitol should be moved, but it could be half a year or longer before any action is taken. That's because of a 2016 law, the Tennessee Heritage Protection Act, determines how all memorials and statues are treated.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Gov. Bill Haslam suggested Monday that he would be willing to back a renewed effort to remove a controversial bust of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest, after dozens of protesters gathered at the Tennessee State Capitol Monday to demand it be taken down immediately.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

The state agency responsible for fighting wildfires is defending its handling of the blazes that destroyed more than 2,000 structures in Sevier County last year.

The comments from the Tennessee Division of Forestry comes as officials are finally releasing records about the catastrophe, which caused $1 billion dollars in damage and claimed 14 lives.

The wildfires swept through Gatlinburg shortly after Thanksgiving. Many people were caught by surprise, and local officials have struggled to explain why the resort area wasn't evacuated before the fires became a threat.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Vice President Mike Pence touted the strong economy and, despite moves by Congress to turn to other issues, pledged to keep pushing for repeal of the Affordable Care Act in a speech to a record 2,000 people at the Tennessee Republican Party's annual Statesmen's Dinner.

Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Vice President Mike Pence is due in Nashville on Thursday to speak to the Tennessee Republican Party — an appearance that comes amid a tumultuous period in the White House.

Pence will speak at the Tennessee GOP's annual Statesmen's Dinner, its biggest event of the year. The fundraiser at the Music City Center typically draws more than 1,000 of the party's most ardent supporters, and the Tennessee Republican Party has a history of lining up top-tier figures.

TN Photo Services (file)

One of the richest and most recognizable Republican names floating around next year’s gubernatorial race has officially entered.

Diane Black made a Facebook post around 3 a.m. Wednesday, marking the U.S. representative’s long anticipated arrival into an already crowded GOP field.

Black enters the race as the favorite to win the Republican nomination. She's better-known statewide than any other candidate, she's personally wealthy and she's an experienced fundraiser, so she might convince some people in the race to drop out.

TN Photo Services (file)

Former Tennessee economic development commissioner Randy Boyd has been securing endorsements from county mayors in his bid for governor. And on Wednesday he locked down support in the state's most populous county.

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

New research suggests the Tennessee state legislature is now one of the most politically divided in the South.

Across the 13-state region, only Texas has a legislature that's more polarized, according to a study of all 50 statehouses. 

Researchers say the rise in partisanship appears to be tied to a change in voting patterns in rural areas.

Chas Sisk / WPLN (File photo)

A political scientist at Middle Tennessee State University is predicting next year's race for governor could go down in the books as the state's most expensive race ever.

Kent Syler, an instructor at MTSU and former campaign manager to U.S. Rep. Bart Gordon, says the battle to succeed Gov. Bill Haslam should easily eclipse the $20 million he spent to win the office in 2010 and is likely to surpass the state record $34 million that went into the 2006 Senate campaigns of Bob Corker and Harold Ford, Jr.