Tennessee lawmaker under fire after interview comments

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) – A Republican lawmaker from Chattanooga is under fire for comments made during a local TV interview in which he blamed “inner city” obesity partly on people eating fried chicken and criticized local police hiring practices. State Sen. Tedd Gardenhire did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment. Gardenhire is currently running for re-election against Democrat Glenn Scruggs, who is Chattanooga’s assistant police chief. Mayor Andy Berke on Thursday told reporters that Gardenhire’s comments were “out of touch,” and he was proud of the city’s police department commitment to be more inclusive.

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