GOP Researcher: Who Tipped off ‘Commercial Appeal’?

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A volunteer for Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s campaign who made an open records request for documents about an opponent wants to know who told The Commercial Appeal about it.

After the Memphis newspaper wrote about the April request, Tyler E. Jones asked the county for the name and job title of the person who gave the information to the newspaper.

Jones initially asked for thousands of pages of documents, which included county e-mails, about Republican primary challenger and Shelby County Register Tom Leatherwood, who is in the running for the 7th Congressional District seat.

Assistant County Attorney Craig E. Willis told Jones all record requests are public records and that his follow-up letter did not meet the criteria for a records request.

Leatherwood said the second request seemed like an intimidation technique meant to stifle government employees from communicating with reporters.

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