Tennessee Independent Baptists for Religious Liberty Identifies General Assembly Bills to Watch

A Tennessee Independent Baptist lobbyist group has compiled a list of state legislative bills that may be of interest to its individual church members.

The Tennessee Independent Baptists for Religious Liberty issued the list in an email newsletter Monday for Tennessee General Assembly bills. Some earned the organization’s approval, all filed by Republicans, while more earned disapproval – most, but not all, were filed by Democrats.

The Tennessee Independent Baptists for Religious Liberty’s website is here. The organization was formed in 2016 and is supported by autonomous churches around the state.

Bills receiving the organization’s approval, by topic, include:



Rep. James (Micah) Van Huss (R-TN-06)

Prohibits abortions from the point a fetal heartbeat is detected; requires fetal heartbeat testing prior to an abortion; creates exceptions.


Rep. James (Micah) Van Huss (R-TN-06)

Increases by $500 the minimum fine imposed for a first or second violation of the requirement that a physician who reports suspected sexual abuse due to being requested to perform an abortion on a minor include in that report information regarding the sampling and preservation of embryonic or fetal tissue; increased fine amounts will be $1,000 and $1,500 respectively.

(Another bill receiving the group’s support, HB0014, to expand enhanced penalties for the sale of controlled substances in a drug-free school zone, was withdrawn.)

Bills receiving the organization’s disapproval, by topic, include:



Rep. Sam Whitson (R-TN-65)

Changes from once every five years to once every four years the time frame during which social workers, marriage and family therapists, professional counselors, pastoral counselors, alcohol and drug abuse counselors, and occupational therapists must complete an approved suicide prevention training program.


Rep. Barbara Cooper (D-TN-86)

Requires a county election commission to maintain certain office hours on Sundays for purposes of early voting.



Sen. Frank Nicely (R-TN-08)

Extends the duration of an industrial hemp grower’s license from one year to two years.


HB0001 & SB0016

Rep. Rick Staples (D-TN-15) & Sen. Raumesh Akbari (D-TN-29)

Authorizes sports betting in this state only in jurisdictions that approve sports betting by local option election; imposes a 10 percent tax on gaming revenue; distributes 40 percent of the tax to the general fund for general appropriations, 30 percent to Tennessee colleges of applied technologies and community colleges for equipment and capital projects, and 30 percent to local governments for education and infrastructure; establishes the Tennessee gaming commission to regulate sports betting; authorizes the commission to collaborate with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation for purposes of enforcement.


HB0017 & SB0024

Rep. London Lamar (D-TN-91) & Sen. Brenda Gilmore (D-TN-19)

Establishes a presumption that a minor who is the victim of a sexual offense or engaged in prostitution held a reasonable belief that the use of force is immediately necessary to avoid imminent death or serious bodily injury.


HB0133 & SB0090

Rep. Harold Love (D-TN-58) & Sen. Raumesh Akbari (D-TN-29)

Authorizes the use of a driver license from another state to establish a person’s identity for the purposes of being issued a photo identification license by the department of safety for the purposes of voting.

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Jason M. Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist at outlets of all sizes.








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2 Thoughts to “Tennessee Independent Baptists for Religious Liberty Identifies General Assembly Bills to Watch”

  1. John Doe

    The article clearly says that they do not support ALL of the legislation above, only some of them. You should read the article more carefully, and maybe visit their website, before you make such demeaning comments.

    Also, not all of the legislators who sponsored those bills are bad. Do you Research!


  2. LB

    All of the legislative sponsors of these bills are hard left liberals. Which tells us all about the Tennessee Independent Baptists for Religious Liberty people.

    It would be wise to have Bobbie Patray give her bills that she is sponsoring. Also, David Fowler should add the bills that he is sponsoring. So we can keep an eye on these bills and support them as needed. We all should be praying for Bill Lee. He’s under a lot of demonic oppression. Prayer is powerful!