public safety

Republican executive committee to Lee: Drop special session

Members of the Tennessee Republican Party’s executive committee vote on a motion in Mt. Juliet on Aug. 5, 2023, (Erik Schelzig, Tennessee Journal)

The executive committee of the Tennessee Republican Party voted over the weekend to call on Gov. Bill Lee to abandon plans for a special session on public safety, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reported.

“The Tennessee Republican Party encourages Gov. Bill Lee to reconsider and not have a special session Aug. 21, 2023,” the the resolution said. The measure was adopted unanimously by the 34 of 66 eligible voters remaining at the end of a marathon meeting in Mt. Juliet on Saturday.

“My concern, and a lot of others’ concerns, is that some of the proposals we’ve heard really violate due process of law,” Tina Benkiser of Signal Mountain, the member who proposed the language of the resolution, told the paper. “And that is a fundamental concern. And when you start talking about potentially infringing on people’s constitutional rights, that needs to be thought out over a long period of time with people who have thought, debated, looked at the language and fleshed all that out. Not something to be rushed through.”

Lee has been meeting behind closed doors with lawmakers in recent weeks, but concrete proposals for the Aug. 21 special session have yet to be made public. Lee has yet to issue the call for lawmakers to return to Nashville.


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