Publisher’s Positions

By Steve Hunley

Buuck’s Opponent Running On Federal, Not Local, Issues

David Buuck’s Republican opponent’s running for Knox County Law Director did motivate him to get a local telephone number and quite probably a local license plate.  For quite some time, Buuck’s opponent had a New Jersey area code for his telephone and a New Jersey license plate on his car.  Considering he offers himself for public office everywhere he happens to land at the time, after the election on Tuesday, he may head back to New Jersey and announce he’s running against Robert Menendez, the corruption-riddled U.S. senator from New Jersey.  Buuck’s opponent is already running on a platform for federal office rather than local office, so he would be familiar with the issues.


University of Florida Gets Rid Of DEI

The University of Florida has fired all of its Diversity, Equity & Inclusion employees.  A memo went out stating, “To comply with the Florida Board of Governors’ regulation 9.016 on prohibited expenditures, the University of Florida has closed the Office of the Chief Diversity Officer, eliminated DEI positions and administrative appointments, and halted DEI-focused contracts with outside vendors.”

According to a campus newspaper, 13 DEI positions, which were full-time were dismissed and 15 administrative appointments were eliminated.

A regulation was adopted by Florida’s Board of Governors in January, which had the effect of limiting the amount of public funding for DEI.  The regulation affected those as “any program, campus activity, or policy that classifies individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation and promotes differential or preferential treatment of individuals on the basis of such classification.”

The savings gave the University of Florida $5 million to reallocate.  It would probably be worthwhile for UT to consider the same thing.


Biden Talks Climate Change At Border

Joe Biden has finally dragged himself to the southern border after three and a half years in office.  In January, Biden insisted there was no crisis at the border, but just recently, Old Joe thinks something might be wrong at the border.  When Biden got to Brownsville, Texas, he began talking about the wildfires, which led him to chatter about climate change.  Biden said those who don’t believe in climate change are “Neanderthals.”  “The idea there’s no such thing as climate change.  I love that, man.  I love some of my Neanderthal friends who still think there’s no climate change,” Biden said.

The head of the union that represents Border Patrol agents in the U. S., Brandon Judd, had some choice words for Biden.  Judd described Eagle Pass, Texas, as the “epicenter” of the border crisis, while Biden was several hundred miles away in Brownsville.  Judd said agents were “mad as hell” Biden went to Brownsville, Texas, instead of San Diego, or Arizona or Eagle Pass.


Mitch McConnell Steps Aside

Mitch McConnell, at age 82, has announced he will resign as Minority Leader in the U.S. Senate, this November, following the elections.  Assistant Minority Leader John Cornyn has already announced he will run for the post.  The contest will likely come down to Cornyn, John Thune of South Dakota and John Barrasso of Wyoming.  There are other possibilities as well.  Steve Daines of Montana, head of the campaign arm of the GOP senatorial committee, and Rick Scott of Florida who tried to beat McConnell the last time.


Congress Needs To Pass A Budget

Six of Tennessee’s congressional delegation in the House of Representatives voted against the continuing resolution last Thursday that would fund the government from March 8 – March 22.  The resolution passed with 320 votes to 99 against.  Those Tennesseans voting against the continuing resolution were Tim Burchett, Diana Harshbarger from upper East Tennessee, Scott DesJarlais, Andy Ogles, John Rose and Mark Green.  Congressmen Chuck Fleischmann, David Kustoff and Steve Cohen voted for the stop-gap funding measure.  Congressman Burchett, who also voted against the proposed temporary spending package, was clear in stating he has no intention of “moving forward with more short-term funding” without the southern border being closed.  “We need to pass a budget like the state of Tennessee and the rest of America does,” Burchett said.


Green To Run For Another Term

Congressman Mark Green has said he has changed his mind about not running for reelection this year.  The lawmaker had previously announced he would not run again and retire from the U. S. House of Representatives at the end of his term.  Senator Marsha Blackburn, who Green succeeded in the House, had urged the congressman to change his mind.  Calls from constituents and former President Donald Trump apparently caused Green to rethink his decision.


Tom Spangler Needs Our Prayers And Support

Sheriff Tom Spangler’s announcement he is being treated for pancreatic cancer was in keeping with his pledge of being transparent and forthright.  The news shocked Sheriff Spangler’s many friends and family.  The good news is that the cancer has been detected early and the sheriff’s prognosis is excellent.  Knox County couldn’t possibly hope for a better man to serve as its Sheriff.  Tom Spangler is fundamentally just a fine man and a wonderful person.  As sheriff, Spangler always tries to do his best and never forgets the people he represents.  Everyone here at The Knoxville Focus will be praying for Tom Spangler’s recovery and victory over cancer.