Monday, August 17, 2015

Zachary to take House seat early

Jason Zachary
The general election is still more than a month away, but Republican primary winner Jason Zachary is expected to take the 14th District House seat early.

Since no Democrats qualified to run for the post, Zachary – who won the Aug. 12 primary – is all but assured the victory in September.

State law gives the Knox County Commission the power to fill the position in the interim, something board members said they plan to do during next Monday’s regular meeting and after a public hearing.

They will discuss the issue further during today’s work session.

Commissioners told WBIR 10News that in case something came up between now and Sept. 29 that would require action by the Tennessee General Assembly, they’d want someone in the position.

Zachary, a local businessman, defeated school board member Karen Carson to claim the seat.

During the race, the candidates clearly differentiated themselves on the question of funding for Insure Tennessee, Gov. Haslam's proposal to fill a gap in health care coverage among lower income groups.

Carson, a pediatric nurse, supported it. Zachary bluntly opposed pursuing such a proposal.

Last year, Zachary ran a spirited, yet unsuccessful, race in defeat against longtime U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr.

The seat opened up after Ryan Haynes resigned in the spring to become the state GOP chairman.

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