Jon Lundberg Running For Reelection:  A Look At His Voting Record

Image Credit: Jon Lundberg / Facebook & Antony-22 / CC

The Tennessee Conservative [By Kelly M. Jackson] –

Now that the general session has concluded, those who are seeking reelection this year have hit the campaign trail to engage with their constituents and convince them to send them back to The Hill for another round.

One of those is Senator Jon Lundberg (R-Bristol-District 4), who has a lot to answer for in his voting record as a Republican in Tennessee.

Prior to his appearances in The Tennessee Conservative’s RINO Report, Lundberg’s voting record during the height of the covid pandemic did not reflect the conservative decision-making that his constituents would have expected from someone with an “R” after their name.

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In 2021, Lundberg signed Sen. Haile’s letter endorsing and pushing the “emergency use authorized” Covid-19 vaccine on Tennesseans.

Due to Lundberg’s voting record, he was featured in The Tennessee Conservative’s 2022 RINO Report.

Some of the votes that earned him this distinction included:

Helping To Kill Bill To Remove Obscene Materials From School Libraries

HB1944/SB1944  was carried by Rep. Scott Cepicky (R-D64-Culleoka) and Senator Joey Hensley (R-D28-Hohenwald) and was written to compel school boards to set up a process for identifying and purging obscene materials from their library shelves. The bill passed the House but was sent to summer study in the Senate Judiciary Committee, which included a vote from Lundberg to do so.

Opened The Door To Establish Professional Licensure Opportunities for Illegals

HB2309/SB2464 created an avenue for non- US citizens to have the ability to obtain professional and commercial licensure in Tennessee. This type of policy tends to make states who have them a magnet for illegal aliens who would then be able to come to Tennessee and successfully make the state their home. Lundberg voted in favor of the legislation. 

Lundberg supported corporate welfare by voting for legislation (SB2890) allowing Chattanooga Lookouts to retain sales tax deal to fund their new stadium and by voting in favor of Governor Lee’s 2023 budget, which allocated $8.9 Billion more in state dollars than the 2022 budget and included $550 Million To help fund a new domed stadium in Nashville for The Tennessee Titans.

In 2022, he also voted for the ‘Incumbent Protection Bill’ to silence Tennessee grassroots, SB1005.

In 2023, Lundberg sponsored legislation to eliminate maximum class sizes in Tennessee classrooms.

HB0809/SB0197 endeavored to allow for public school districts in Tennessee to be able to set their own numbers for maximum class sizes.  The legislation was fortunately voted down in the K-12 Education Subcommittee. 

 Lundberg also voted in favor of “The Money Transmission Modernization Act” or SB0268 that paved the way for global currency in Tennessee.

Additionally, Lundberg voted in favor of SB0745 that created an exception for a physician’s good faith judgement on abortion.

For 2023, the Tennessee Legislative Report Card gave Senator Lundberg a vote score of 89, and a leadership grade of B-. Of note, nearly 71% of Lundberg’s campaign contributions come from special interests.

The 2024 legislative session should have provided Lundberg with plenty of opportunities to help advance truly conservative policies that would have promoted freedom and personal liberty.

However, many of his votes were quite the contrary.

Voted Against Bill To Ban Pride Flags In Tennessee Classrooms In The Senate Education Committee

Lundberg was one of three republicans on the Senate Education Committee to vote against SB1722. Along with the lone Democrat on the committee (Raumesh Akbari) , Republican Senators Todd Gardenhire (R-Chattanooga-District 10) and Bill Powers (R-Clarksville-District 22) voted against the bill which aims to give clear guidance as to which flags are appropriate for flying in Tennessee public schools and public charter schools.

Lunderg switched his voting stance when the bill was up for a final vote on the Senate floor but the bill failed to gain the Constitutional majority vote needed to pass.

Voted Against Allowing Law Enforcement To Assign SROs To Schools That Fail To Request One In Senate Judiciary Committee

SB1715/HB1664, sponsored by Senator Joey Hensley (R-Hohenwald-District 28) and Representative Todd Warner (R-Chapel Hill-District 92), amended current law by allowing SROs to be assigned to schools if there is not a “memorandum of understanding” between the law enforcement agency and the local board of education.

The law eventually passed in both chambers, but not with any help from Senator Lundberg who voted against passing the legislation through Senate Judiciary Committee, where there was an attempt to kill it. Despite those efforts the legislation was passed and signed into law by Governor Lee.

Voted For Bill To Block Public Access To Department Of Tourist Development Records Involving Millions In Taxpayer Dollars

(SB2093), carried by Senator Jack Johnson (R-Franklin-District 27), aimed to block public access to records detailing deals made through the Department of Tourist Development. Now that the law has passed, those records will be exempt from public records laws if the tourism commissioner and attorney general deem them “sensitive.”

This includes multi-million-dollar deals which will be exempt from public scrutiny for at least 10 years. Lundberg joined other republicans in passing this law against government transparency and accountability. 

Voted For Sen. Massey’s Expansion On Reporting Those With Mental Health Issues Deemed To Be Dangers To The Public

Officially signed into law by Governor Lee,  Senate Bill 1673 (SB1673), sponsored by Sen. Becky Massey (R-Knoxville-District 6), expands mandatory reporting laws for mental health professionals by requiring them to report a patient to local law enforcement, 988 or a local health facility if the individual makes what that mental health professional deems to be a threat against a group of people related to a school or against a family member of the patient. 

Characterized by critics as “red flag adjacent” the concern was that if this type of information is being collected by state level law enforcement agencies in the same fashion and place as records of those who have committed actual crimes, it could be used to deprive Tennesseans of access to their Second Amendment rights. 

The new law doesn’t go that far, it does however expand the focus of the threat from being confined to a single person to a group or type of group, and absolves mental health professionals from any consequences should they decide to breach their patient’s privacy rights and turn over their name to the authorities. 

Lundberg voted in favor of the legislation, despite enthusiastic resistance from his constituency. 

Voted Against Legislation That Would Have Increased Penalties For Transporting Illegal Aliens To Tennessee

Senate Bill 2802 (SB2082), sponsored by Senator Joey Hensley (R-Hohenwald-District 28), would have increased penalties for the transportation of illegal aliens into the state by amending a current statute and raising the fine from $1,000 to $5,000 per individual. It would also have removed current exemptions for common carriers (like Greyhound buses and Delta Airlines).

Lundberg was one of several other republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee who voted against this effort to keep illegal aliens from being trafficked into our state. 

Voted For Legislation Expediting The Termination Of Parental Rights Following A Subjective Interpretation Of “Substantial Non-Compliance

SB2660, which was sponsored by Senator Dawn White (R-Murfreesboro-District 13), allows a judge to make the determination if a parent was not in compliance with the responsibilities as outlined in the permanency plan

A permanency plan is often seen by courts as an admission of guilt by the parents, which becomes an issue when the parents have not been proved to be out of compliance but feel pressure to concede to a plan because they believe it will help regain custody.  The law could also criminalize parents based on anonymous allegations. 

Lundberg was one of 22 republican senators that voted in favor of this deeply problematic legislation.

Lundberg Helped To Kill Bill That Would Have Helped Protect Tennesseans From What Is The Inarguably Biased And Persecutory Federal Department Of Justice 

SB2804/HB2912 was written and carried with the intent to protect Tennesseans from being surveilled and investigated by the Biden DOJ with the assistance of the state and local law enforcement resources they themselves pay for. 

The bill was carried in the State Senate by Senator Joey Hensley (R-D28-Hohenwald).

This law would have ensured that the federal government can only utilize local and state law enforcement resources for criminal cases versus intelligence operations/investigations of those who the federal government may deem as problematic because of their conservative values, their religious beliefs or even their open support of former president and current front runner for the Republican nomination, Donald Trump. 

When the bill was presented in the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which Lundberg is a member, there was no motion from a single member of the committee to initiate the hearing of the bill, which killed the bill instantly, without the merits being presented by the bill’s senate sponsor. 

GET THE COURSE NOW!

In addition to the troublesome voting record we have detailed in this article, it appears that Senator Lundberg has made some other choices his grassroots constituency may find just as disappointing. 

Lundberg has chosen to hire the consulting firm of “never-Trumper” and former chief of staff to Gov. Bill Lee (R-TN), CEO of lobbying and PR firm BHA Strategy Blake Harris, to run his 2024 reelection campaign. 

Among the organization’s core strategists is President of BHA Strategy is Brent Easley, who previously served as Gov. Lee’s legislative director for almost five years. 

According to the firm’s website, during his time as part of the Lee Administration Easley “was successful in gaining passage of key policies in a number of areas including modernization of transportation policy, sweeping changes in education, criminal justice reforms, COVID-19 response and targeting budget priorities.”

Considering the lack of conservative values realized by much of Gov. Lee’s legislation, it is no surprise that fellow RINO Sen. Lundberg would hire a sort of “nepo baby” firm of the Lee Administration to back him in this year’s Senate race. 

Finally, with Lundberg actually facing a primary challenger in this year’s race with Bobby Harshbarger, Lundberg has recruited fellow establishment republicans to attempt at a sort of “lawfare” to undermine Harshbarger’s campaign before the race even gets started. 

Tennessee Sen. Ken Yager recently asked the Tennessee Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance to look into the East Tennessee Conservatives PAC and any connections it might have to Harshbarger. The request came after text messages were sent from the PAC related to Lundberg’s voting record.

Yager stated in his letter to the Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance that the PAC and Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger share a campaign treasurer.

Yager said, “I believe the various connections between the Bobby Harshbarger campaign and the East Tennessee Conservatives PAC need to be scrutinized, and as chairman of the Senate Republican Caucus, this complaint was the best way I could bring these issues to light.”

PAC Treasurer Thomas Datwyler is the treasurer for dozens of conservative campaigns and PACs across the country. He confirmed that “no money was shared between the campaigns or PAC’s in any way. That would be illegal.”

Datwyler said that his role is campaign finance compliance. Datwyler said, “I can promise you there is no coordination or connection between the Diana or Bobby Harshbarger and East Tennessee Conservatives PAC.” 

Bobby Harshbarger said that any allegations about collusion or skirting campaign finance laws were “completely false” and that he “absolutely” doesn’t know any of the people affiliated with the PAC.

Harshbarger said, “I think it’s just political theater, in all honesty, because what this is doing is just deflecting from Lundberg’s voting record.”  Harshbarger added, “I don’t understand why he had a colleague of his file this. I don’t know if this is trying to keep his reputation in line.”

The inquiry may all come to nothing, as it did in the case of Gary Humble, who was attacked in a very similar fashion, and after 18 months of dogged pursuit at the behest of a constituent and close friend of Senator Jack Johnson (who was nearly bested by Humble for his Senate seat) the inquiry was closed for lack of substance. 

About the Author: Kelly Jackson is an escapee from corporate America, and a California refugee to Tennessee. Christ follower, Wife and Mom of three amazing teenagers, she has a BA in Comm from Point Loma Nazarene University, and has a background in law enforcement and human resources. Since the summer of 2020, she has spent any and all free time in the trenches with local grassroots orgs, including Mom’s for Liberty Williamson County and Tennessee Stands as a core member.  An outspoken advocate for parents rights, medical freedom, and individual liberty, Kelly also has a YouTube channel @Tennessee_Truth_Teller and is planning on expanding out to other channels soon. Kelly can be reached at kelly@tennesseeconservativenews.com.

4 thoughts on “Jon Lundberg Running For Reelection:  A Look At His Voting Record

  • May 10, 2024 at 4:14 pm
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    After many conversations with my representatives I can tell you that many of our Republicans mirror the RINO’s in DC.
    I have lost all respect for the GOP all the way down to the local level.

    Reply
  • May 10, 2024 at 11:19 pm
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    I couldn’t agree more. Fortunately for Dickson County we have a True Constitutional Conservative in Jody Barrett. There are a handful of others as well. If some of these RINOS get primaried this election things really might have a chance for change, especially in the Senate!

    Reply
    • June 4, 2024 at 6:40 pm
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      We have a true constitutional conservative here too in Knox County. Her name is Monica Irvine. I will vote for her to help oust Senator Becky Massey.

      Reply
  • June 5, 2024 at 12:00 am
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    Is this congressman harshbergers son? I have a very low opinion of her.

    Reply

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