Jessica M. Karmasek Apr. 18, 2013, 4:00pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Legal Newsline) -- The Tennessee Senate on Wednesday voted to approve a resolution allowing the General Assembly, not the state Supreme Court, to select the state's top lawyer.

According to The Tennessean, senators voted 22-9 in favor of giving themselves the power to pick the attorney general.

However, the question must be put before voters. That would not happen until November 2018, the newspaper reported.

Before that, the constitutional amendment must pass the state House of Representatives this year or next. Then it must pass both chambers again, by a two-thirds majority.

Tennessee is the only state that allows its high court to pick the attorney general.

Opponents of the resolution argue the current system eliminates any political pressure.

But supporters contend it is a conflict of interest for an attorney general to argue cases before the court that picked him or her.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

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