Tennessee’s Failed Legislation for 2012: No Jobs?

Much has been said about the Tennessee “wing-nuts” legislative agenda. It has been laughable and a disgrace to the people of the great state of Tennessee. It has also been the nucleus of many jokes across the nation. What happens when backwoods mentality is adapted into law? Here is a list of some of the wing-nut’s legislation that failed in this year’s legislative session:

BAN-DISCRIMINATION LAWS: Repealing a ban on local governments from enacting stricter anti-discrimination standards than the state. SB2762.

MAKE ATTORNEY GENERAL A POLITICAL APPOINTMENT: Proposed amendment to constitution to have governor appoint the attorney general. SJR0693.

REDUCE LEGISLATIVE SESSIONS: Holding legislative sessions only every other year. HB2785.

CUT FOOD TAX TO HELP TENNESSEE FAMILIES: Requiring state to make cuts in sales tax on groceries if state has surplus revenues. SB3666.

REMOVE LIMIT ON CLASS SIZE: Lifting the cap on average class sizes at public schools. SB2210.

RESTRICT COLLEGE RIGHTS TO INACT NONDISCRIMINATION ON RELIGIOUS GROUPS: Banning colleges from enacting nondiscrimination policies on student religious groups. SB3597. (Vetoed by Gov. Bill Haslam)

ALLOW UNLIMITED CONTRIBUTIONS TO STATE LEGISLATORS: Lifting total amount of campaign contributions legislative candidates can accept from political action committees. HB3281.

DON’T SAY GAY: IT’S A BAD WORD: Banning teaching about gay issues to elementary and middle school students. HB0229.

MAKING JUDGES POLITICALLY APPOINTED HACKS: Holding popular elections for Supreme Court justices in August 2014. HB0173.

NO GUN BACKGROUND CHECKS NECESSARY: Exempting handgun carry permit holders from background checks for firearms purchases. SB0306.

EVERYONE NEEDS A GUN IN PARKING LOTS: Guaranteeing employees the right to store firearms in vehicles parked at work. SB3002.

RESTRICT PUBLIC ACCESS TO RECORDS: Blocking public access to names of owners of businesses receiving grants from state. HB2345.

HEALTH CARE COMPACT: Adding Tennessee to an interstate health care compact. HB0369.

HORSE SLAUGHTER: Encouraging horse slaughter facilities to locate in Tennessee. HB3619.

NO JUDICIAL REVIEW: Stripping state courts of the power to block laws enacted by the Legislature. SB2348.

LOBBYIST TO SERVE LAWMAKER’S FREE MEALS: Allowing employers of lobbyists to host receptions for standing legislative committees. HB3025.

ATTACKS ON STATE WORKERS – LAWMAKER-DRUG TESTING: Requiring drug tests for state lawmakers. HB2411.

BAN A LIVING WAGE: Banning cities and counties from establishing a living wage. HB3386.

RESTRICT LOTTERY SCHOLARSHIPS: Making it more difficult to earn lottery scholarships. SB2514.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA: Legalizing medical marijuana in Tennessee. HB0294.

DISCLOSURE OF MODEL LEGISLATION: Requiring bill sponsors to disclose if their measure is based on model legislation. HB2301.

NO MOTORCYCLE HELMETS NEEDED: Allowing adults to ride motorcycles without safety helmets. HB1673.

MOUNTAINTOP REMOVAL: Banning mountaintop removal coal mining in Tennessee. SB0577.

NURSES ASSAULT: Increasing penalties for assaults on health care workers. SB2658.

ORAL CHEMOTHERAPY: Requiring insurers to cover oral chemotherapy treatments. HB1087.

FREEZE PER DIEM FOR STATE WORKERS: Freezing the per diem expense allowance for state lawmakers. SB1372.

SELECTING JUDGES-TENNESSEE PLAN: Proposed constitutional amendment to underscore current state system for selecting Supreme Court justices. SJR0183.

STRIPPER TAX: Taxing adult businesses and strippers to pay for reduction in tax on coins and bullion. HB0469.

TEACHER TENURE: Allowing teachers who receive average evaluations to qualify for tenure. HB2447.

TRUCK STOP BAN: Banning truck stops from within a half-mile of Nashville and Memphis. HB3683.

REPEAL VOTER SUPPRESSION LAW: Repealing Tennessee’s voter ID requirements. HB2176.

NO WINE IN SUPERMARKETS: Allowing wine to be sold in supermarkets. HB2874.

The saddest aspect of this legislative year is the fact that not one job bill was proposed by the Republican controlled legislation. The legislators felt it was more important to draft legislation drafted for “GOP” special interest (lobbyists, corporations, and the wealthy).

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