Bill To Stop Social Media Censorship Of TN Elections & Citizens Passes Senate Subcommittee

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The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –

Senator Bo Watson’s bill that seeks to designate social media platforms as common carriers and prescribe fines for deplatforming and shadow-banning users passed the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee yesterday evening (March 15th) and now moves on to the Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee.

Senator Bo Watson said to The Tennessee Conservative in response, “We completed the first step in the Senate journey of this important legislation that protects our right to free speech from over-reaching censorship on the large social media platforms. Getting the bill out of the Senate Commerce and Labor committee was a big win for conservative voices, but there is still a lot of road ahead of us. I need people to stay engaged”

Senate Bill 2161, sponsored by Watson (R-Hixson-District 11), and House Bill 2369, sponsored by Representative Dennis Powers (R-Jacksboro-District 36), in summary, seeks to designate social media platforms as common carriers and requires the entities to obtain certificates of public convenience and necessity from the Tennessee public utilities commission; prescribes fines against social media platforms that deplatform and shadow ban users based on political ideology, viewpoint, or personal animus, or discrimination based on race, creed, color, religion, sex, age, or national origin.

SB2161 passed the Senate subcommittee with a 7-1 vote. An amendment to the bill was voted on and accepted but the legislators did not read the amendment during the meeting and it is not currently posted on


The House version of the bill (HB2369) will be heard by the House Business and Utilities Subcommittee today, March 16th.

The Senate version (SB2161) has now been assigned to the Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee but it has not yet appeared on their calendar.

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Note from The Tennessee Conservative: Many good bills die in subcommittees and committees before they ever make it to the floor for a vote and any one of the subcommittees/committees that hear legislation can stop a bill’s progression to becoming law. If you support this legislation, contact the Republicans on the House Subcommittee to voice your support.

House Business and Utilities Subcommittee Republican Members:

Clark Boyd (chair) – – (615) 741-7086

Rebecca K. Alexander – – (615) 741-2251

Kent Calfee – – (615) 741-7658

Patsy Hazlewood- – (615) 741-2746

John B. Holsclaw, Jr. – – (615) 741-7450

Curtis Johnson – – (615) 741-4341

Eddie Mannis – – (615) 741-2287

Kevin Vaughan – – (615) 741-1866

Greg Vital – – (615) 741-3025

Jason Zachary – – (615) 741-2264

About the Author: Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative  ~ Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career.  Most recently, he served as Deputy Director for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen, the Crossville Chronicle and The Oracle among others.  He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History.  Contact Jason at

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