The Look in Brief

Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris endorses Smiley for governor

By: - May 25, 2022 12:30 pm
Councilmember and gubernatorial candidate JB Smiley, Jr., at a recent debate. (Photo: JB Smiley)

Memphis Councilmember and gubernatorial candidate JB Smiley, Jr., at a recent debate. (Photo: JB Smiley)

Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris announced his endorsement of gubernatorial candidate J.B. Smiley Wednesday, a day before the first of three debates sponsored by the Tennessee Democratic Party. 

Councilman Smiley understands the issues that matter to working women and men and the challenges that face our neighborhoods. Tennessee needs a Governor who will focus on the needs of our families, work hard, and work with all leaders across our great state,” said Harris in a statement. 

Smiley, an attorney by trade, was elected to Memphis City Council in 2019 and serves as a “super-district” representative. The Memphis Council has seven districts with one representative and two “super districts” with three representatives each. 

He serves as the chair of council’s Public Works, Transportation and General Services Committee and the council liaison for the Urban Art Commission. 

Smiley is joined in the Democratic primary by Dr. Jason Martin of Nashville and Carnita Atwater of Memphis. 

The three candidates are scheduled to debate in Knoxville Thursday at 7:30 CDT/8:30 EDT. Debates are scheduled for Nashville (June 21) and Memphis (TBA.)

The winner of the Aug. 4 primary will face incumbent Gov. Bill Lee in the November general election.



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Holly McCall
Holly McCall

Holly McCall has been a fixture in Tennessee media and politics for decades. She covered city hall for papers in Columbus, Ohio and Joplin, Missouri before returning to Tennessee with the Nashville Business Journal. She has served as political analyst for WZTV Fox 17 and provided communications consulting for political campaigns at all levels, from city council to presidential. Holly brings a deep wealth of knowledge about Tennessee’s political processes and players and likes nothing better than getting into the weeds of how political deals are made.

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