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Tennessee flag logo and words religious liberty bills

Political Involvement of Churches (SB 403 / HB 609)

BILL SUMMARY

Exempts churches and religious organizations from the requirements applicable to Political Action Committees (PACs) when spending funds in favor or opposition to ballot measures related to morality, such as alcohol, drugs, abortion, marriage, or gambling.

BILL ANALYSIS

Important bill to preserve the ability of a church to inform its community about issues related to biblical teaching without having to worry about being fined for violation of the state’s campaign finance laws.

BILL SPONSORS

Gresham in the Senate, Gant in the House

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Full Text: Senate Bill / House Bill

BILL STATUS

No action taken in the House or Senate.

Tennessee flag logo and words religious liberty bills

Business Protection Act (SB 127 / HB 54)

The vote board in the Tennessee Senate on March 9, 2016.

BILL SUMMARY

Also known as the Business Protection Act, this bill prohibits discriminatory action by state and local government officials against businesses on the basis of the business’ internal personnel policies, provided they are in compliance with state and federal law.

BILL ANALYSIS

It prohibits a local government or a “rogue” state or local official from conditioning contracts or bids or other business with private entities on whether they hold specific internal policies beyond what state law requires.

BILL SPONSORS

Green in the Senate, Zachary in the House

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Full Text: Senate Bill / House Bill 

BILL STATUS

Passed Senate 25-5-3. No action taken in the House.

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Tennessee flag logo and words life bills

Assisted Suicide Bill (SB 1378 / HB 1394)

BILL SUMMARY

Also known as the Assisted Suicide Bill, it allows for an adult suffering from a terminal disease to make a written request for life-ending medication.

BILL ANALYSIS

Raises a whole host of spiritual, legal, and ethical issues. If passed, this bill could have enormous impact as to Tennessee’s policy (as a state) on the intrinsic value of life.

BILL SPONSORS

Tate in the Senate, Wirgau in the House

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Full Text: Senate Bill / House Bill

BILL STATUS

No action taken in the House or Senate.

Tennessee flag logo and words life bills

Prohibits Abortions After Viability (SB 1180 / HB 1189)

BILL SUMMARY

Prohibits abortion of a viable fetus and requires testing to determine viability if a woman is at least 20 weeks pregnant.

BILL ANALYSIS

Similar to the 20-week abortion ban (see TN Senate Bill 766). Requiring a determination of viability is an attempt to improve the odds that the law would not be held unconstitutional under current U.S. Supreme Court precedent. As passed, prohibits abortion of a viable fetus and requires testing to determine viability if a woman is at least 20 weeks pregnant.

BILL SPONSORS

Hensley in the Senate, M. Hill in the House

BILL STATUS

Signed by Governor 5/11/17. Public Chapter 353.

Full Text: Senate Bill / House Bill

 

Tennessee flag logo and words life bills

Personhood at Fertilization (SB 743 / HB 895)

BILL SUMMARY

Declares that life begins at conception and all the rights of personhood attach at that point.

BILL ANALYSIS

This bill would not survive a constitutional challenge under existing Supreme Court precedent, as states can ban abortion after “viability” which, legally is considered to occur at 24 weeks.

BILL SPONSORS

Beavers in the Senate, Pody in the House

TRACK THIS BILL

Full Text: Senate Bill / House Bill

BILL STATUS

No action taken in the House or Senate.