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Published: July 11, 2019


TENNESSEE STATE REPRESENTATIVE DAVID BYRD IS BACK IN THE MEDIA AFTER REPORTS SURFACED ON WEDNESDAY THAT GOVERNOR LEE ATTEMPTED TO PERSUADE HIM NOT TO RUN IN THE 2020 ELECTION. BYRD REACTED TO THE REPORT AND REACHED OUT TO THE ASSOCIATED PRESS COMMENTING THAT THIS WAS NOT TRUE. LESS THAN AN HOUR LATER HE ATTEMPTED TO RETRACK HIS STATEMENT CLAIMING THE CONVERSATION WAS PRIVATE. GOVERNOR LEE'S OFFICE DID NOT COMMENT ON BYRD'S STATEMENTS BUT DID COMMENT ON A VIDEO THAT WAS RECORDED TUESDAY SHOWING THE GOVERNOR ANSWERING A QUESTION REGARDING BYRD AND RESPONDING THAT HE WOULD SOON BE REMOVED FROM LEGISLATURE. LEE'S SPOKESPERSON ADVISED THE GOVERNOR THOUGHT HE WAS RESPONDING TO A QUESTION REGARDING HOUSE SPEAKER GLEN CASADA WHO IS STEPPING DOWN AFTER A HIGHLY PUBLICIZED CONTROVERSY SURROUNDING HIM AND HIS TOP AIDE.  BYRD HAS BEEN UNDER SCRUTINY FOR OVER A YEAR AFTER BEING ACCUSED OF INAPPROPRIATE SEXUAL CONTACT FROM THREE OF HIS FORMER WAYNE COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL PLAYERS.