Overbey sworn in as U.S. attorney, resigns state Senate seat

Former state Sen. Doug Overbey, R-Maryville, resigned his Senate seat effective 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, Nov. 21, and was sworn in as the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee at 3:30 p.m., reports the Maryville-Alcoa Daily Times.

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Overbey told The Daily Times that he was eating lunch with the Maryville Kiwanis at noon Tuesday, when he looked down at his cellphone and saw an email, “Congratulations. The president has signed your commission. Please make plans to be sworn in.”

“I think it was 12:12,” Overbey said.

Thus started a scrambling for Overbey to resign his state Senate seat and be sworn in as U.S. Attorney. Lucky for Overbey, the Chief U.S. District Judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee was in town, he said.

“He happened to have this afternoon available, so we quickly put together a swearing-in ceremony at 3:30 today,” Overbey said of Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas A. Varlan.

The hastily arranged ceremony took place at the Howard H. Baker Jr. United States Courthouse in Knoxville… Overbey added that a more formal ceremony will take place at a later date.

Note: A statement from Lt. Gov. Randy McNally on the occasion:

“As chairman of the Senate Ethics Committee and as vice-chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, Doug Overbey has shown true leadership on some of the most important issues we deal with as a legislature,” McNally said in a statement included with the email. “His commitment to representing his constituents and producing quality legislation is unwavering. Having witnessed his knowledge of the law first hand, I am confident he will do an outstanding job.”

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