Tennessee lawmaker calls for investigation into Casada team’s spending

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In this May 1, 2019, photo, House Speaker Glen Casada, R-Franklin, stands at the microphone during a House session in Nashville, Tenn. House Republicans have scheduled a closed-door meeting to discuss the future of Tennessee’s embattled House speaker. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A Tennessee lawmaker is calling for an investigation into outgoing House Speaker Glen Casada’s spending.

“All of these reports of no-show jobs, five figure raises for former interns and multi-million dollar expenditure increases need to be fully examined before we go into special session and vote on a new Speaker,” said Democratic Caucus Chair Mike Stewart in a release on Wednesday.

He called for a three-pronged investigation into the allegations of misspending:

  • A full financial audit by the comptroller’s office into spending on purchases, salaries and allocations made by the Speaker’s office since Casada’s election.
  • The appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the no-show jobs held by employees of the Speaker’s office.
  • An open records release of all financial records, receipts, timesheets and other documents for full public review.

Lawmakers said taxpayers are entitled to know where that money went and said the investigation should be completed before August 23, the day set aside by Governor Bill Lee for a special legislative session to elect a new speaker.

Casada has said he’ll resign August 2 following a series of scandals that were first reported earlier this year as the regular legislative session was concluding.

Casada has been dogged by calls to resign since it was revealed he exchanged text messages containing sexually explicit language about women with his former chief of staff several years ago, among other controversies.

 

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