On seeking his 10th term as lieutenant governor: "People know who I am. I don't know who I am, but I know what I'd like to be."
On Tennessee senators' resolve to stop drinking vodka from Donald Duck juice cans during sessions: "Senate used to go quack quack. Senate don't go quack quack no more."
On running for governor: "I have thought about it, I have weighed it, thought about it, walked up to it, touched it, felt it, walked away from it, and thought about it."
On former Gov. Ned McWherter: "He stands tall. He stands big. He stands wide. He stands firm. He knows how to ease along. He doesn't get his gown over his head too much. He's got big feet."
On love: "We understand that you are the law of the universe. We understand that law is love. That is the strongest force in the cosmos. And that's good. It is not bad."
On being the Senate's leader: "The speaker does not like to hunt. The speaker does not like to play golf. The speaker does not like to fish. The speaker likes to be the speaker."
On the Senate: "We know that our body functions. We know we are loyal party people, but we feel good with each other. We're not mad. We're glad. And we're glad we're not mad. It's not good to be mad."
On his push to put organ donation forms back on Tennessee driver's licenses: "You don't have to use these organs once you check out. There are a lot of organs, but not many donors."
On the law: "Back in England, they said due process was the law of the land. I say it's the law of the cosmos, the law of the universe."
On Texas prison inmates: "They operate computers. They build houses. They grow cotton. They pick cotton. They gin cotton. They spin cotton. They weave cotton. They sew cotton. They dig dirt. They make bricks. They lay bricks. They lay bricks on top of each other to build houses. Got a contracting firm down there. Five hundred people are in it. They build houses. They kill pigs. They skin the pigs. They tan the hides. They make shoes."
On his colleagues: "The Senate is the Senate. The Senate is good."
On getting out of politics: "I don't like to quit. When I quit, I'll be dead. But it'll be a short funeral. Don't expect to find me standing around the grave."