Photo Credit: Gov. Bill Lee / Facebook
By Anne Beckett [contributor to The Tennessee Conservative] –
The emergency powers of Gov. Bill Lee need to be limited immediately. The extended state of emergency which now governs the State of Tennessee is unconscionable. Further, it has rendered the General Assembly ineffective in their oath of office.
This General Assembly took an oath of office to support our constitutions, and therein the “life, liberty and property” of TN citizens. These rights have been violated by being limited, suppressed and removed.
Further, the General Assembly abdicated its duty to one man, Gov. Bill Lee, by allowing the continuation of 62 particular Executive Orders issued specifically under emergency powers over the last 18 months since March 2020.
The General Assembly has delegated its duties to one man whose duty it is to execute the laws. Not create them.
That is reserved exclusively as a legislative duty.
The Tennessee Code allows the Governor to function with emergency powers for a total of 60 days. He may renew the order. (1)
The renewals have lasted 18 months. Enough already.
An “emergency” is defined as: “A serious situation or occurrence that happens unexpectedly and demands immediate action.“ If we really have an emergency, requiring “immediate action,” why would they not stay in continuous session to protect the state and citizens?
This August, legislators admitted our medical freedoms are being abused. (2) Yet, a House bill entered last January was tabled by the Senate in April, which would have at least ended the “emergency” along with making the executive orders moot. (3) After a year of shut down, they had no excuse to set it aside and not release us. Unconscionable.
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Why are the General Assembly abdicating their responsibilities? Have they allowed themselves to be neutered? (4)
Lawmakers around the country are challenging executive actions relating to the declared pandemic. (5)
Why is our supermajority Republican legislation neglecting to do the same?
The people request the General Assembly to end the current emergency. Additionally, they need to further constrain both the scope and duration of emergency powers of the Governor by requiring approval by the House and Senate before they become effective or extended.
This has been done in Pennsylvania, we can do it here. (6)
If the General Assembly can not protect its citizens and uphold the TN Constitution and Codes now, how can they stand up to continuing federal encroachment and protect the sovereignty of Tennessee under the 10th Amendment of the US Constitution?
Click HERE to view all the bills currently up for consideration in this week’s Special Session.
Find your State Representative HERE.
Find your State Senator HERE.
About the Author: Anne Beckett is the founder of the Tennessee Action Group in Fentress County. Their first action was a drive to garner signatures for a Petition to Governor Lee to stop illegal immigration into Tennessee. You can find out more at www.tennactiongroup.org, or find them on Facebook.