Judicial election latest disagreement in Tennessee GOP

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Add the election of Supreme Court justices and appellate judges to the list of disagreements between the top two Republicans at the Tennessee Statehouse.

Senate Speaker Ramsey of Blountville on Tuesday night broke a 4-4 committee deadlock on a bill to require appellate judges to stand for popular election -- a move that Gov. Bill Haslam has opposed.

Haslam spoke out during last year's campaign in favor of keeping the current system in which the governor appoints justices and appeals judges, who later stand in yes-no retention elections.

Ramsey came in a distant third in the Republican primary won by Haslam.

Haslam and Ramsey have since disagreed on key areas including the extent of teachers' collective bargaining rights and whether the executive branch should have control over medications used to make methamphetamine.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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