Tennesseans Feel Angered, Misled By Lee’s Misdirection, Handling Of Illegal Immigration

Photo: Governor Bill Lee

Photo Credit: Gov. Bill Lee / Facebook

Published May 25, 2021

The Tennessee Conservative Staff –

Many Tennesseans are confused by Governor Lee’s recent outspoken denouncement of Biden’s immigration policies when held in contrast to Lee’s previous statements and policies regarding “refugee resettlement” in Tennessee.

Many have voiced that Lee’s current statements are intended to redirect the public’s attention away from his own policies that opened up Tennessee to be a “border state” and in turn, a hub for the resettling of immigrants across the Southeast.

Tennessee Capitol Building in Nashville

One such misdirection was in a reply email to a reader of the Tennessee Conservative dated March 15, 2021, in which the office of Tennessee Governor Bill Lee stated that they rejected the Biden Administration’s request to use Tennessee facilities to house illegal immigrants. 

Click HERE for larger version of email.

Our reader stated, “He (Lee) flat out lied to me. He told me in a March email that he had declined the Biden Administrations request to use TN. facilities because the federal government must secure our border. His words, I still have the email.” 

While the Governor has recently publicly denounced Biden’s handling of the Southern Border situation and joined with 19 other Republican governors in a letter to the President stating that the administration’s policy changes and rhetoric have led to the ongoing crisis, Lee’s prior stance stands in sharp contrast. 

In December 2019, Lee said in a statement: “The United States and Tennessee have always been, since the very founding of our nation, a shining beacon of freedom and opportunity for the persecuted and oppressed, particularly those suffering religious persecution.”   

Lee went on to say, ““My administration has worked extensively to determine the best outcome for Tennessee, and I will consent to working with President Trump and his administration to responsibly resettle refugees.” 

This sentiment was echoed in a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

Despite Lee’s now publicly-touted stance on illegal immigration, his vocal opposition to Biden’s border policies has not slowed the influx of immigrants into Tennessee via an operation headed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

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Many Tennesseans expressed have their anger and feel misled by Governor Lee in statements they shared on social media.

Del Su Stephens Larson asks, “Why is he allowing this? The money?? TN citizens do not want this in their state.” 

Carol Stoughton Tactac says, “I’ve supported Gov. Lee in many of his decisions for this state….BUT NOT THIS!!! End this now & send them all back and let them go through the legal process!” 

Billy Kemmerling says, “Had high hopes that Bill was on the right track. Guess not. Tennessee will go to trash if enough are let in. This is the same as handing the state over to the democrats. How much were you paid Bill? Keep an eye on his lifestyle changes. Bet it will become more lavish. Look at his housing. Look at his cars. Look at where he frequents.”

Lee’s refugee resettlement policies have been echoed by Democratic leaders in some of Tennessee’s largest population centers.

As reported by the Tennessean, in November 2019 both Nashville Mayor John Cooper and then Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero sent letters to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo consenting to welcoming refugees. 

Shelby County Mayor Lee Ardrey Harris later sent his own letter to Pompeo welcoming refugees to his county reaffirming his long-standing stance on the acceptance of refugees and making Shelby County a ‘Refuge for Refugees,” as reported by the Daily Memphian

“When we have the ability to act, we have a moral duty to help those in need, those in dire circumstances,” Harris said. “Refugees embark on a perilous journey to find safety, and historically the U.S. has been ready to do its part to provide safe haven. 

“We should continue to do our part to provide safety and save the lives of children and families,” Harris concluded. 

In an article that originated with the Associated Press, and republished by FOX17 WZTV Nashville in January 2020, Governor Bill Lee cautioned members of the Republican party not to fall prey to “misinformation” about refugees, stressing that they are an oppressed group and are not “illegal immigrants.” 

The article states that Lee declined an offer from the Trump Administration that would have allowed states and local governments the authority to stop resettling refugees. 

Lee defended his actions to continue accepting refugees by stating, “if we don’t engage in the process, then we have no control over it whatsoever.” 

Lee stated that if people want to come to Tennessee, they can resettle in another state and move “and we will not know who they are, we will not have any way to engage in their assimilation, and we will have no control over this process.” 

“And you may like not having control over who comes into this state, but I don’t,” Lee continued, “I want to be engaged in this process. There is a right way to do this. And turning our backs to the process altogether is the wrong way to do it.” 

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10 thoughts on “Tennesseans Feel Angered, Misled By Lee’s Misdirection, Handling Of Illegal Immigration

  • May 25, 2021 at 4:29 pm

    Lee is a traitor and this “dead of night” operation is total proof of it! He KNOWS Tennesseans don’t want this or it would be done in daylight!!
    This is Not immigration or the resettling if so called “refugees”!! THIS is an invasion of our country, and will forever CHANGE OUR country!!! I’m so tired of these bought and paid for politicians…they are a PLAGUE upon the CITIZENS of America!!!!!
    I’ve relayed these feelings in an email to Lee!!

  • May 25, 2021 at 4:29 pm

    He is just another politician it depends on who’s asking the question as to the answer you get. I say screw them all

  • May 25, 2021 at 5:14 pm

    Can Lee be impeached?
    I voted for a Republican. Obviously a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  • May 25, 2021 at 5:17 pm

    Load their butts up and fly them back to their country. We do not need any more problems. When all our children have good schools and no one is sleeping on the street then and only then we will be able to help someone other country.

  • May 25, 2021 at 5:55 pm

    I am so tired of lying politicians! Vote Lee OUT!!

  • May 25, 2021 at 6:40 pm

    It’s always the same old story. They talk big to get elected and then do the opposite of what they promise. THIS RINO NEEDS TO GO , AS IN YESTERDAY !!!!!

  • May 25, 2021 at 8:07 pm

    Under the Trump administration the southern border was secured, immigrants were health and background checked before entry to the United States, at that time we weren’t dealing with the volume or lack of screening issues.
    Under the Biden administration, the borders are open , the USA is allowing a deluge of illegal immigrants. No health or background screening, during a Pandemic, described as children,
    they are teens and adults . These illegal immigrants are brought in by the Biden administration without knowledge or coordination with the States involved. This is an entirely different situation, a violation of immigration laws, Federal encroachment of State governments, disregard for the safety of US citizens and will put a burden on TN tax payers health, safety and education funds..Drug Cartels can easily enter bringing drugs, sex trafficking, gangs and violence to our state.

  • May 25, 2021 at 8:27 pm

    Bill Lee had an agreement with the Trump Adm not with the Biden let them all in policy. I was a bit angry at the time and helped Cumberland County become a no refugee county. Enter Biden who rescinded everything Trump did. I cannot condemn Bill Lee and support his current statement, in fact I support it.

    My only gripe is Bill Lee’s press agents have done a poor job, they went through a number of them and seem to be doing better as of late.

  • May 26, 2021 at 11:44 am

    The Gov is letting his Religious beliefs interfere with his constituents needs. Great Politicians can separate their religious beliefs from their Leadership Acumen–while My religious beliefs are always tempering my judgement my leadership is better because of it–By not letting one cloud the other together they should guide but in Politics it is the Voter First i.e., Tennessee First. Good by Gov Lee and good reddens.

    Possible re-call petition? Would that wake him up?? My tax money is for Tennessee Americans–when there are no more homeless and the down trodden American’s in our streets then and only then Maybe. Stop the sound of tax money being sucked up to placate an ego–put it to good use here for Tennesseans.

  • July 15, 2021 at 8:27 pm

    At this point the problem is that we do not have a strong conservative to run against him in the primary……we need one. I have been very disappointed at the times he has pushed any type of hard or high profile decisions to other people, usually at the local level. He opposed the law that would protect the Tennessee people from vaccine passports and secure freedom of choice. How he just lied about the illegals coming into Tennessee and now he is using our money for housing, medical, food, etc for them. Then he is also using our money to pay for flights for people to vacation here. Those airline tickets should be used to send the illegals back to the country they came from. I think we DO NOT have a true conservative or Republican in our Governors office.


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