Lou Ann Zelenik
Early life, education and career
From 2007 to 2009, Zelenik served as Vice Chair and Chairman of the Rutherford County Republican Party. As a dedicated advocate for limited government, she organized the first Tea Party in Rutherford County.
After the passage of the bank bailouts and the stimulus bill, Zelenik declared that she would challenge Democratic incumbent Rep. Bart Gordon in the 2010 congressional election. With the retirement of Rep. Gordon in December 2009, her biggest competitions were expected to come from Tennessee state senators Diane Black and Jim Tracy for the Republican nomination in the primary. The Cook Political Report rates Tennessee's 6th district as Likely Republican. She finished second in the August 5th primary election.
Zelenik was a vociferous opponent of the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro during its construction in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. A press release from her campaign states: Let there be no mistake, Lou Ann stands with everyone who is opposed to the idea of an Islamic training center being built in our community. This "Islamic Center" is not part of a religious movement; it is a political movement designed to fracture the moral and political foundation of Middle Tennessee... Until the American Muslim community find it in their hearts to separate themselves from their evil, radical counterparts, to condemn those who want to destroy our civilization and will fight against them, we are not obligated to open our society to any of them. However, on July 18, 2012, in response to a federal lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, U.S. District Judge Todd Campbell ordered that the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro must be allowed to open in time for the Islamic holy month.
- "Lou Ann Zelenik announces for Congress". The Murfreesboro Post. Murfreesboro, Tennessee. October 5, 2009. Retrieved 2010-04-27.
- "Lou Ann Zelenik (R) 48th District State House Representative". The Murfreesboro Post. July 27, 2008.
- Lind, JR (2010-07-19). "There is no present or future, only the past, happening over and over again, now". Nashville Post.
- Johnson, Russ (April 10, 2010). "Gordon Ouster Pile-on: Republicans Crowd Sixth District". The Murfreesboro News Press. Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Retrieved 2010-04-27.
- The Cook Political Report
- USA Today Tennessee politician's remarks on Islam raise uproar July 28, 2010
- Muslims in America increasingly alienated as hatred grows in Bible belt, Chris McGreal, The Guardian, September 10, 2010
- votelouann.com Zelenik Issues Statement on Proposed Islamic Center June 24, 2010
- USA Today U.S. judge orders Tennessee county to let mosque open July 18, 2012