Despite a statement last week from state Senator Curtis Person that Lt. Governor John Wilder is committed to appointing a majority Republican committee structure if reelected as the senates presiding officer, Persons Shelby County colleague Mark Norris remains doubtful.
I dont think hell do it, Norris told an audience at the monthly Dutch Treat Luncheon at Piccadillys Cafeteria Saturday. Norris said afterward that even if nominal Democrat Wilder responded as Person suggested to the GOPs new one-vote majority in the 33-member body, he might do so by creating new and relatively unimportant committees. Anyhow, hell leave Democrats in control of the big committees like Finance and Commerce, Norrris insisted.
Person, who has withstood intense lobbying from fellow Republicans in recent weeks, is one of what seems to be a growing bloc of GOP senators pledged to support Wilders claim to the speakership against that of GOP caucus chair Ron Ramsey of Blountville. He confided what he said was Wilders firm pledge on the committee issue during a break at last weeks pre-session meeting of Shelby legislators with other Shelby County public officials.