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The Tennessee Democratic Party elected former state senator Roy Herron as its new chairman, Saturday. It's a change party leaders hope will make up for costly losses in the house and senate in recent elections, but Herron tells Fox 17 News, the celebration will be short lived because he s got plenty of work to do.
"The biggest challenge facing the Tennessee Democratic Party is to win elections," Herron said.
In the 2012 elections, Tennessee democrats lost enough races to give state republicans a super, two-thirds, majority in the House and Senate for the first time in 35 years.
Herron replaces former chairman Chip Forrester who says his two terms focused on rebuilding the party s technology and infrastructure to help democratic candidates win some key seats back from republicans.
"We have a good foundation in place now," Forrester said. "We used that foundation in 2012 to elect Gloria Johnson in Knoxville, Bo Mitchell here in Nashville, Drren Jernigan who defeated Jim Gotto. We used all those techniques and new tools. I hope now my successor will continue building on those so we can continue moving the ball downfield."
The party's executive committee voted 39- 27 in favor of Herron who defeated former party treasurer David Garrison.
"I'm confident he'll be a strong leader for the party," Garrison said. "He and I have very different visions for the party and I look forward to seeing how he lays out his plan and hope to work with him in any positive way I can."
Herron says while he and his opponents disagree on some issues, they're ready to put the campaign behind them and work together.
"My focus is on the future," Herron said. "I'm not going to come in criticizing the past chair. I'm going to be looking to see what we can do going forward to move tennessee in the right direction."
Follow me on twitter @wztvericalvarez to see the results of the other party races.
Saturday, January 26 2013, 08:02 PM CST
Union County DUI stop turns up 300 pounds of pot
May 20, 2013 11:54 GMT
MAYNARDVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Union County Sheriff's Office deputies say the truck appeared to be driven by someone under the influence and they stopped it.
Inside, officers found more than 300 pounds of marijuana.
The Knoxville News Sentinel (http://bit.ly/11QgEX9 ) reported authorities arrested 26-year-old Martin Urrutia Olmedo of Knoxville on Saturday morning. Olmedo was held without bond, pending a Thursday scheduled court appearance.
Sheriff's Sgt. Mike Butcher said the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is also looking into the arrest in which Olmedo was charged with drug, DUI and driving violations.
Information from: Knoxville News Sentinel, http://www.knoxnews.com
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