Governor Bill Lee Extends COVID State of Emergency Order

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee


Tennessee Governor Bill Lee on Friday extended the Limited State of Emergency, which has been in effect for more than a year, allowing a continuation of his emergency powers.

Further, the order from the governor allows National Guard troops to continue to assist in vaccination efforts and other “certain health care” functions throughout the state. The order also allows the state to maintain federal compliance.

In the executive order, Lee based the reason for extending the directive was to “facilitate economic and other recovery, and to maintain federal compliance and eligibility.”

The declaration, originally scheduled to end July 30, will now expire on August 29 — assuming Lee does not issue an additional extension.

However, some critics argue that Lee’s executive orders throughout the course of the coronavirus pandemic are an example of a dramatic expansion of government.

State Representative Bruce Griffey (R-Paris) cited concerns of “government over-reach” earlier this year when requesting a legal opinion from the Tennessee Attorney General as to the constitutionality and authority of Lee’s various orders.

“Moreover, when I took my oath of office, I swore to not only support the Tennessee Constitution but also to not consent to any act or thing that shall have a tendency to lessen or abridge the rights and privileges of the people of this state as declared by the Constitution of this State. I intend to uphold my oath of office, and defend the Constitutional rights of Tennesseans and protect them from government over-reach,” Griffey said at the time.

Furthermore, Lee has faced lawsuits relating to his numerous orders.

Tennessee Stands highlighted the perceived unconstitutionality in their lawsuit against Lee, saying Lee’s orders “illegal and unconstitutional and must be declared void.” The group explained the extended powers violates several Articles and Sections of the Tennessee Constitution.

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Cooper Moran is a reporter for the Star News Network. Follow Cooper on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected]







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7 Thoughts to “Governor Bill Lee Extends COVID State of Emergency Order”

  1. RonW

    I think we should require ALL Tennessee elected officials to READ OUT LOUD the Tennessee State Declaration of Rights, at least the first two sections before they take their oath of office, because they may want to back out!

    Declaration of Rights

    Section 1. That all power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their peace, safety, and hap- piness; for the advancement of those ends they have at all times, an unalienable and indefeasible right to alter, reform, or abolish the government in such manner as they may think proper.
    Section 2. That government being instituted for the common benefit, the doctrine of nonresistance against arbitrary power and oppression is absurd, slavish, and destructive of the good and happiness of mankind.

  2. LM

    Bruce Griffey for governor!

  3. Mike

    Apparently those addicted to power will not give it up voluntarily. I believe the state legislators have accountability for allowing the governor control over this emergency. In my case I hold Sen McNally and Rep. Carringer accountable for reigning in this governor.

  4. Ms Independent

    Lee’ days are numbered!

  5. Tim Price

    I voted for Bill Lee but I am increasingly being sorry I did!

    1. 83ragtop50

      TIm, I too voted for Lee in the general election but not in the primary. The guy is in the direct lineage of Haslam; rich and of the belief that he should control my life. My real anger is with the state legislators who have tacitly approved his gross overreaching by their stunning silence. I put the GOP house and senate “leadership” at the front of the line because their failure to act.

  6. David Blackwell RN, BSN, CCM

    Selling his soul to Satan. What a clown. Will not vote for him again, nor do burliness with Lee Company ever again.