Our congratulations go out to state House Speaker Beth Harwell, R-Nashville, on the vote of confidence she received from members of her party Monday. The House Republican Caucus agreed to nominate Harwell as speaker when the state General Assembly returns in January.
Since her party holds 70 of the 99 seats in the Tennessee House, Harwell is all but certain to continue in the role she has held for two years.
Harwell, who is the first woman ever to hold the job, will face many challenges in the new legislative session. Possibly the most important will be to keep the peace among members of her own party.
Although Republicans enjoy a super majority in the House, that doesn’t mean they always get along. Harwell knows there are some deep ideological differences between members, but she hopes to keep the debates civil and productive.
She was quoted this week in The (Nashville) Tennessean as telling her fellow Republicans, “We should all remember that our caucus camp is big enough to have different opinions.”