Government and Politics in Tennessee / Edition 1

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Most Americans are more aware of the workings of the federal government than of their own state governments. But these “laboratories of democracy” constitute perhaps the most creative and successful component of the American political experiment. Like each of the states, Tennessee has developed a state government with a history and political culture uniquely its own.

This book places Tennessee’s modern political institutions in the context of the history and personalities that formed them. It pays special attention to the period after 1978, when three governors left a lasting impression on the direction of the state government. Separate chapters examine the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, explaining how and why Tennessee’s political culture differs from that of other states. The book also explores the ways in which education, health care, corrections, economic development, and other key factors define the government agenda. Additional chapters on the media, political campaigns, and local government provide a backdrop that elucidates more fully how the state government functions.

The authors profile many of the personalities who have shaped Tennessee’s political agenda. Among these are longtime Senate Democratic Speaker John Wilder; his close ally, Senate Republican Leader Ben Atchley; House Speaker Jimmy Naifeh, son of a Lebanese immigrant; and Bill Snodgrass, who served as state comptroller for forty-seven years. The book explains how these individuals related to three governors, Republicans Lamar Alexander and Don Sundquist and Democrat Ned McWherter, whose administrations presided over the state’s greatest period of growth and prosperity.Illustrated with photographs and tables, and featuring anecdotal sidebars that illuminate key issues, this book will be the standard text on Tennessee state government and politics for years to come.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781572331419
  • Publisher: University of Tennessee Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2001
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 472
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

William Lyons is a professor of political science at the University of Tennessee and coauthor of such books as American Government: Politics and Political Culture.

John M. Scheb II is a professor of political science and director of the Social Science Research Institute at the University of Tennessee and coauthor of American Constitutional Law, among other books. In partnership with Dr. Lyons, he provides campaign consulting for political candidates and applied survey research for businesses and organizations.

Billy Stair is director of communication and community outreach at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  He served for eighteen years in the legislative and executive branches of state government, including eight years as senior policy advisor to the Governor.

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Table of Contents

Preface ix
Part I Foundations of Tennessee Politics
1 Political Development and Culture 1
2 The State Constitution 25
Part II Institutions of Tennessee Government
3 The General Assembly 63
4 The Governor 102
5 The State Bureaucracy 125
6 The Judiciary 152
Part III Tennessee Politics
7 Political Parties and Interest Groups 179
8 Public Opinion 208
9 Campaigns and Elections 228
10 The Media 255
Part IV Public Policy in Tennessee
11 Education 283
12 Health, Welfare, and the Environment 313
13 Corrections 330
14 Financing Tennessee Government 352
Part V Local Government and Politics in Tennessee
15 The Politics of Local Government 377
Appendix The Tennessee Constitution 403
Notes 447
Bibliography 465
Index 467
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2002


    This book gives readers an inside view of what it's like inside the Tennessee Government, it gives great details and even has some wonderful humor. The chapters written by Billy Stair are the best, he used to work there! He had the inside scoop! Check it out!

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