Tennessee General Assembly Eliminates Sentence Reductions for Sex Trafficking, Rape, Molestation, Child Abuse and More

The Tennessee General Assembly passed a bill eliminating sentence reductions for 31 sexually-related offenses. These offenses were largely related to rape, assault, sex trafficking, and a variety of crimes against children. The Senate hastened to pass the bill on Wednesday after the House passed it on Tuesday. The General Assembly voted unanimously in favor of the bill. 

As amended, the bill established that there would be no release eligibility for the following offenses: female genital mutilation, felony domestic assault, sex trafficking, advertising minor sexual abuse, rape, aggravated and non-aggravated sexual battery, aggravated statutory rape, felony indecent exposure, patronizing or promoting prostitution, public indecency, continuous child molestation, sexual battery by an authority figure, felony solicitation of a minor, sexual exploitation of a minor, statutory rape by an authority figure, promoting travel for prostitution, unlawful photography of a child under 13, observation without consent, incest, aggravated and non-aggravated child abuse or child neglect and endangerment, child pornography, sale and distribution of child-like sex dolls, and aggravated and especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor. It would also ensure no release eligibility for conspiracy, criminal attempt, or solicitation of any of the above offenses.

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State Rep. Bruce Griffey Reinstated to Committees by Speaker Cameron Sexton

Less than two weeks after being removed from the House Civil Justice, Criminal Justice, and Education Instruction Committees, Rep. Bruce Griffey’s (R-Paris) membership was reinstated by Speaker Cameron Sexton.

Griffey’s removal came unceremoniously at the end of the March 25 House floor session, three days following a testy exchange on the House floor primarily with House Parliamentarian Daniel Hicks, and to a lesser degree Sexton himself, related to Griffey’s use of Rule 53 of the House Permanent Rules of Order for the 112th General Assembly for his proposed E-Verify legislation.

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Speaker Sexton Spares House Members from Rule 53 Vote on E-Verify Legislation

During the House floor session Monday evening, Speaker Cameron Sexton (R-Crossville) spared his members from a Rule 53 vote regarding the proposed E-Verify legislation.

Rep. Bruce Griffey (R-Paris) invoked the Rule 53 provision from the House Permanent Rules of Order for the 112th General Assembly, which is the process of recalling a bill from committee.  If a Rule 53 effort is successful, the subject bill would be scheduled directly to the House floor for a vote, bypassing the committee process that killed the bill.

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Tennessee Legislature Re-Elects Randy McNally, Cameron Sexton as Speakers of Senate, House

Tennessee Lieutenant Governor Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) on Tuesday was re-elected for his third term as Speaker of the Senate, while State Representative Cameron Sexton (R-Crossville) returned as House Speaker.

The Tennessee House Republican Caucus tweeted, “The 112th General Assembly convened today in Nashville! Congratulations to our re-elected Speaker of the House Cameron Sexton, newly elected Speaker Pro Tem Pat Marsh, and all our members as they were sworn into office. @CSexton25 @marsh4tn”.

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House Speaker Cameron Sexton Gives Updates on Barnstorming Tour and Weighs in on the Final Presidential Debate

Friday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Tennessee House Speaker Cameron Sexton to the show to weigh in on last night’s debate between President Trump and Joe Biden in Nashville.

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Speaker Cameron Sexton Discusses Letter to Tennessee General Assembly Requesting to See How Metro Government Has Spent CARES Act Monies

Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Speaker Cameron Sexton to the show to discuss the House efforts to audit Metro government spending.

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Governor Bill Lee’s Second State of the State Continues His Priorities in a $40.8 Billion Budget

  NASHVILLE, Tennessee – At his second annual State of the State Address, Governor Bill Lee continued to prioritize education, criminal justice reform, care for the most vulnerable, and rural Tennessee in his $40.8 billion budget for the upcoming 2020-2021 fiscal year. The next fiscal year’s budget reflects a 3.7…

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First Day: New House Speaker Sexton Sets Agenda for Second Legislative Session

NASHVILLE, Tennessee – Tuesday, January 14 marked the first day of the second session of the 111th Tennessee General Assembly and included a House Republican caucus meeting, a new Speaker at the House dais, the swearing in of the newest member to the House of Representatives and the passage of a religious freedom bill by the Senate.

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Attempts by House Democrats to Expel Representative David Byrd During the Special Session Unsuccessful

  NASHVILLE, Tennessee – House Democrats launched an unsuccessful attempt to expel Representative David Byrd (R-Waynesboro) from the House of Representatives during the Extraordinary Session on August 23 to elect a new Speaker. HR 7006, introduced by Representative Gloria Johnson (D-Knoxville) on August 5 reads, “Expels David Byrd from his…

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