NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — It’s no secret that the relationship between Nashville’s Metro Council and state government has been tenuous at best.
But now, that could be changing. Nashville Mayor John Cooper reached out to the Republican National Committee to inform it that the city is interested in the RNC in 2028.
“I think it would start the process of having a better working relationship on many issues, not just the bills that are here,” Speaker of the House Cameron Sexton (R-Crossville) said Thursday.
Republican leadership said many of the bills to strip power from local government could potentially go away if Metro continues to entertain the possibility of the convention.
Though, Sexton was clear when asked if that included the bill to reduce Metro Council. “No” he said. “No.”
But the others, those are on the table.
“The Lieutenant Governor’s bill about the Convention Center tax zone and where the money’s being spent, I don’t think Mayor Cooper wants us to dive too deep into that,” Sexton said. “So, I would think that that would probably be his number one ask is, can we not dive in and look where he’s spending all that money.”
A reporter asked, “Well, where is he spending all that money? Do you have any ideas?”
“We have ideas,” Sexton said. “We’re doing our due diligence.”
The prospect of the state government dipping its hands into local affairs doesn’t sit well with Democrats.
“That’s inappropriate,” Rep. John Ray Clemmons (D-Nashville) said. “That’s overstepping into local government affairs.”
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Clemmons touched on the fact that Nashville brings in enormous amounts of economic activity for the state, but the city is run by a council that has a Democratic majority.
“These folks control everything in state government,” Clemmons said of his colleagues in the Republican party. “They control, it’s a one-party rule up here, and the one thing they don’t control in this state is Nashville. I think it drives them nuts.”
Interestingly enough, Cooper sent letters to both Republican and Democratic National Committees, opening the possibility of the DNC coming to the city, as well.