TBI Warns Of Mexican Drug Cartels In Tennessee In Wake Of Ineffective Illegal Immigration Bills

Image Credit: DEA

The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation says drug cartels from Mexico are making it increasingly more difficult to do their jobs safely. This comes in the wake of ineffective legislation passed in the last General Assembly that serves as more of a draw for illegal immigration than a deterrent and a flurry of good legislation killed before reaching the floor for a vote.

Back in the summer, the TBI warned Tennessee residents of the rise in fentanyl use. While meth still ranks higher in overdose cases at 31%, fentanyl and fentanyl analogues now make up around 17%. While heroin use was down, they noted that this is not necessarily a positive for the state because it shows just how rampant fentanyl use is becoming.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that fentanyl overdose is the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 18 and 45.

The TBI has issued another warning to the public of an increase in drugs and violence across the state. This time, they have opted to release the names of the cartels that they believe are responsible.

“There are two primary cartels that we have found very connected to almost everything we do,” said TBI Director David Rausch. “That is the Sinaloa Cartel out of Mexico and the new Jalisco Cartel. Both of them are actively, very engaged in operations in Tennessee and we are working closely with our friends at the DEA on addressing that head on.”

Rausch says that more funding is needed to properly staff and maintain agents for their department to be successful in the war against these drug cartels. He says he has spoken to Governor Lee about the need to increase salaries to keep from losing the agents they currently have. The agency currently has available positions in aviation, forensics, and other areas.

While Tennessee legislators claim to want to combat drug use and other crimes across the state, their failure to enact strong legislation against illegal immigration shows otherwise. In the last General Assembly, the majority of legislation either created stronger magnets or was ineffective against stopping it.  Good bills died before getting to the floor for a vote.

Legislation passed in the 112th General Assembly Creating Illegal Immigration Magnets:

HB2309 / SB2464  – Law paves the way for non-U.S. citizens to obtain professional and commercial licenses in the Volunteer state; increasing magnets for illegal aliens to migrate to and successfully habitate in the Volunteer State.  Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Democrat Bob Freeman in the House and Republican Shane Reeves in the Senate.

Status: 34 House Republicans voted in favor of House Bill 2309, while 15 Senate Republicans voted in favor of Senate Bill 2464.  Governor Bill Lee had the power to veto the bill, but signed it into law only four days after it reached his desk.

Good Illegal Immigration Legislation Killed Before Reaching The Floor For A Vote:

HB2222/ SB2264 – Legislation sought to give local law enforcement the authority to enforce federal law and arrest anyone transporting, harboring or facilitating the transport of illegal aliens into Tennessee. Legislation sponsored by Rep. Dennis Powers in the House and Sen. Frank Niceley in the Senate.

Status: Failed in Senate Judiciary Committee with the help of the three Republican Senators.

HB1648 / SB2597  – Legislation sought to stop taxpayers from being forced to fund education for illegal immigrants.  Give school systems the choice of whether they wanted to enroll students who are unlawfully in the United States. School districts who choose to do so would no longer receive state funding for those students, leaving them responsible for any costs associated with educating those children.  Legislation sponsored by Rep. Bruce Griffey in the House and Sen. Joey Hensley in the Senate.

Status: Failed in the House K-12 Subcommittee with the help of three Republican Representatives listed below voting against. 

HB1994 / SB2636 – Legislation sought to require the Commission of Safety, in collaboration with the Commissioner of Human Services, to implement a system for the relocation of illegal aliens who arrive in Tennessee to other locations.  Legislation sponsored by Rep. Bruce Griffey in the House and Sen. Frank Niceley in the Senate.

Status: Failed in the House Department and Agencies Subcommittee. No Representatives offered a second to move the bill forward.

HB1636 / SB2297 – Legislation sought to require employers of six or more individuals to utilize an e-verification program in hiring; remove

immunity for an employer’s reliance on other forms of verification; and prescribed penalties for employers found to be in violation.

Legislation sponsored by Rep. Bruce Griffey in the House and Sen. Mark Pody in the Senate.

Status: Deferred to ‘Summer Study’ in the House Banking and Consumer Affairs Subcommittee. Motion to move to summer study

made by Rep. Clark Boyd citing preference for his own E-verify bill that, after amendments, only lowered employee threshold from

current 50 to 35, prescribed no disciplinary action and fines for businesses/individuals that are found to be in violation and would

not ask that employers use the E-verify system to verify the work authorization status of employees unless they are hired on or after

January 1st, 2023.

For more information on the above bills and for much more, download the Tennessee Conservative’s RINO Report HERE.  

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 news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com

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