Gov. Bill Haslam says he will appoint three new judges to a five-member panel formed to hear a case challenging the constitutionality of Tennessee’s method of selecting judges. Three original appointees stepped down over a possible conflict of interest.

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The upper chamber voted 28-0 to ban elected and appointed public officeholders from using a get out of jail free card for misconduct performed on the taxpayers’ time. Three lawmakers abstained, including one who says the state should look at removing diversion for other crimes, too.


The Legislature is considering proposals for a new judicial ethics panel, either made up mostly of judges or laypeople.