Senate Republicans on Thursday voted to re-elect their leadership team, including Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, Majority Leader Jack Johnson and Caucus Chair Ken Yager.
The group’s selection of McNally will not be finalized until the full Senate votes for a leader, but Democrats hold just six of the chamber’s 33 seats.
During the Thursday meeting at the legislative office building in Nashville, the super-majority caucus also elected Ferrell Haile as treasurer, Dawn White as secretary and Shane Reeves as chaplain.
“Tennesseans have spoken clearly that they want to continue conservative management of our state budget, and to implement policies to encourage growth, and reduce burdens on small businesses and working families,” Johnson said in a release. “The stability in our leadership team positions us to move seamlessly into the 2021 legislative session during these difficult times as we unite to focus on policies that will create opportunities and improve the lives of Tennesseans.”
Senate Democrats, who picked up one seat in the November election, have not yet scheduled their leadership elections, though no challengers have yet emerged to Minority Leader Jeff Yarbro and Caucus Chair Raumesh Akbari.
In the House, some Nashville representatives are running for the open Democratic Caucus chair position, and Minority Leader Karen Camper is expected to be unopposed for re-election.
Republican leaders Speaker Cameron Sexton and House Majority Leader William Lamberth are also unopposed in their bids, while Republican Caucus Chair Jeremy Faison faces Rep. Robin Smith for the leadership position.
Dozens of House Republicans are gathering this weekend at Pickwick Landing State Park for an annual retreat. There, they will be joined in person by Gov. Bill Lee, Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey and other top state officials.
“It’s going to be well-ventilated and social distancing,” Faison told the Tennessean. “I feel pretty good about it.”