Off the Record: In-State Tuition Bill for Illegal Immigrants Must Be in Trouble – Haslam’s Former Chief of Staff to the Rescue?


Remember the first time two Republican legislators filed a bill to give illegal immigrants taxpayer subsidized in-state tuition and when it didn’t pass, House member Richard Floyd started crying?

Remember the second time two Republican legislators filed a bill to give illegal immigrants taxpayer subsidized in-state tuition?

And Governor Haslam, in his typical can’t-give-a-straight-or-decisive-answer-until-we-know-which-way-the-winds-are-blowing, said “it has merit.”

That bill failed also even though Speaker Harwell walked out so she wouldn’t have to cast a vote?

And then remember the third time a bill was filed to give illegal immigrants taxpayer subsidized in-state tuition?

And Governor Haslam took a picture on the capitol steps with advocates for illegal immigration to make sure all Tennesseans understood he actually supports at least a little bit of illegal immigration,

Since Haslam can’t run again it’s okay for him to break the campaign promise he made to demagnetize Tennessee from illegal immigration. When he was desperate to be Governor he promised all kinds of things in writing and told voters that:

In order to keep Tennessee a great state, we must also work to provide more and better job opportunities for Tennessee residents. An important part of that effort must be making sure that available jobs are only going to individuals who are legally resident in the state. [so now he supports getting illegal immigrants college educated so they can work in Tennessee?]

Tennessee is paying a price for the failure of the federal government to effectively secure our nation’s borders and enforce our immigration laws. As governor, I will enforce the state laws on the books and do everything within my authority to be sure that Tennessee does not attract illegal activity. [so now I’ll just help change the law]

Just to be clear – the path to in-state tuition the Governor supports is going to VERY MUCH CHANGE STATE LAW. If the Governor really meant what he said when he was campaigning, he wouldn’t be supporting bills that say that taxpayer subsidized in-state tuition should no longer be considered a state or public benefit.

And last year, after the bill failed for a third time, Haslam said he wanted to see it tried again – and it is.

We know that Sen. Gardenhire’s bill was supposed to have been voted on by the Senate Education Committee last week and then he moved it to a date unspecified called “the committee’s last calendar.”

So when we heard from one of our many sources at the legislature that the Governor’s former chief of staff Mark Cate was twisting arms in advance of tomorrow’s subcommittee vote on the in-state tuition bill….

After leaving or being asked to leave the Governor’s staff, Cate and other former Haslam staffers and an ECD staffer, set up the Stones River Group consulting firm. They were joined by Jennifer Triplett, a former employee of Randy Boyd’s pet appliance company.


Putting all these little pieces together surely raises the troubling question of whether Randy Boyd gubernatorial candidate really does oppose in-state tuition for illegal immigrants like he claims – at least while he is campaigning.

If the bill passes, Boyd could take a line from Haslam the campaigner, and just promise to “enforce the state laws on the books.”

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7 Thoughts to “Off the Record: In-State Tuition Bill for Illegal Immigrants Must Be in Trouble – Haslam’s Former Chief of Staff to the Rescue?”

  1. Sherrie Orange

    Remember…whatever you legalize you are sure to get more of. According to www. The illegal immigration cost to TN. Taxpayers is 793 million dollars which amounts to the burden of $315.00 per household. We will become a magnet for illegals and our cost will increase. Besides that, passing this law is only sanctioning illegal immigration and eventually more instate benefits will come to them which is not fair or good for hard working legal taxpayers. Please contact the House Committee which votes on this bill Tuesday and contact the Senate Education Committee which votes on this bill on Wednesday.

  2. Jim Forsythe

    In-State Tuition for illegals is stupid. Send them home and save a lot of money.

  3. Donna Locke

    This is what happens when people who want to be religious ministers take office. You do know Haslam was in divinity school? Take a look at the others.

    Destroying this nation, the best hope for humanity, by mass immigration is not in any future human’s best interest. Compromising with the problem is how we got so far into this mess. We can’t save everyone. There is a big picture to consider.

  4. Stuart I. Anderson

    Well fellow conservatives, this legislation just passed the House Education Administration and Planning Subcommittee! We need to know who the Republicans are who vote to make Tennessee more attractive to illegal aliens by supporting this legislation as it makes its way through the legislature. The Republican Primary is coming up so this is a perfect time for the “wets” to make themselves known so we can vote them out!

  5. I have already conveyed this concern to Mark Green. If we continue to bend to the ways of illegal, then where will it stop. Oh, it is NOT stopping. If people cannot see that it takes money from one thing to pay for the other, then what can you really say. STAND UP AND HAVE THAT VOICE.

  6. CM in TN


  7. CM in TN

    We must urge our state reps and senators to vote against this. This is another example of incrementalism just like the gun laws. “Just give them this”, then they come back asking for more and more. Just as Mark Steyn said yesterday, “Giving the illegals the vote nullifies citizenship.” This stuff must be firmly stopped in its tracks and those fauz-CONservatives outed as the traitors they are. Primaries are upon us…