House GOP caucus will meet to discuss embattled speaker

Posted at 12:40 PM, May 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-15 19:42:20-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Support for House Speaker Glen Casada continued to erode Wednesday after nearly a dozen members of his own party sent a letter to their Caucus chairman asking for a special meeting regarding Casada's title.

The letter, obtained by NewsChannel 5, was written by Representative Jerry Sexton. It was sent to Representative Cameron Sexton who currently serves as Chairman for the House Republican Caucus.

In the letter some Republicans called on a special meeting to be held next week to discuss the support Casada has within the party. There is also a posibility the Caucus could hold a secret vote to gauge whether Casada should remain as House Speaker.

"There's been a continued erosion of support for him, I think as a legislator and leader you have to look at your effectiveness and his effectiveness has eroded pretty severely," said NewsChannel 5 political analyst Pat Nolan.

This all comes after a week long NewsChannel 5 investigation has dug up questions surrounding one of the state's most powerful politicians.

Casada's chief of staff, Cade Cothren, resigned earlier this week after NewsChannel 5 uncovered text messages where Cothren admitted to snorting cocaine inside his office at the Capitol. The texts also revealed a sexually explicit conversations Cothren had with his boss -- something Casada initially denied and tried to cover up, before admitting last week he had sent the texts and wanted to apologize.

Republicans who signed the letter are: Rep. Chris Todd from Madison County, Rep. Jason Zachary from Knox County, Rep. Chris Hurt from Lauderadale County, Rep. Justin Lafferty from Knox County, Rep. Patsy Hazelwood from Hamilton County, Rep. Dan Howell from Polk County, Rep. Mike Carter from Hamilton County, Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver from Smith County, Rep. John Ragan from Anderson County, Rep. Jay Reedy from Houston County and Rep. Ron Gant from Fayette County.

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NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Capitol Hill