Finance Committee Sets Tuesday Vote on SJR 127

Following several weeks of unexpected delay, pro-life SJR 127 was brought up for debate at the end of today’s meeting of the important Senate Finance Committee. Action was further delayed, however, to next Tuesday, February 24, 8:30 a.m. (CST) when the pro-life resolution will be at the top of the agenda. Supporters are encouraged to attend the meeting in Room 12 of Legislative Plaza.
Today’s vote was postponed after pro-abortion committee members raised objections to the resolution’s wording. Senator Jim Kyle (D-Memphis) questioned the resolution’s clear prohibition of the use of tax dollars for abortion and requested that the Attorney General provide an opinion on the constitutionality of the proposal. Pro-abortion Senator Ward Crutchfield (D-Chattanooga) further delayed the vote, asking that the committee go into recess to hear from pro-abortion lobbyist for the Women’s Political Caucus, Mary Frances Lyles.
In recent days, pro-abortion activists including Planned Parenthood, the ACLU and the Women’s Political Caucus have stepped up their campaign to counter pro-life efforts which have demonstrated strong public support for SJR 127.
An email this week from the pro-abortion Women’s Political Caucus urged their members to contact senators on the finance committee in order to “protect privacy rights” and the “independence of the Tennessee Supreme Court.” Pro-abortion lobbyist Lyles reported that upon visiting members of the finance committee, senators were being “swamped with calls and letters from people urging them to support this ‘dangerous’ (pro-life) amendment.”
Lyles testified before the committee today that the pro-life resolution seeks to “exempt abortion from the privacy guarantee of the Tennessee Constitution.” She also complained that, in addition to “jeopardizing privacy rights,” the pro-life resolution “undermines the integrity and the independence of the Tennessee Supreme Court.”

Unfortunately, the integrity of the Tennessee Supreme Court has already been undermined with their baseless 4-1 ruling in 2000 that the Tennessee Constitution includes a “fundamental right to abortion.”
It’s time to show the state’s pro-abortion movement what “being swamped” really looks like.
Please take a moment to once again show your support for the passage of Senate Joint Resolution 127. Forward this email message to as many pro-life friends, family, co-workers, and church members as possible. Ask them to contact the members below in support of SJR 127 in order to Let the People Vote!

Pro-abortion members of the Finance Committee include the following:
Senator Roy Herron
Senator Jim Kyle
Senator Ward Crutchfield
Senator John Ford
Senator Joe Haynes
Members of the Senate Finance Committee with a pro-life record of support for common sense pro-life protections:
Chair, Senator Douglas Henry*
Senator Bill Clabough
Senator Ben Atchley *
Senator Tim Burchett *
Senator David Fowler *
(R-Chattanooga-sponsor of SJR 127)
Senator Ron Ramsey *
Tennessee General Assembly
Legislative Switchboard: (615) 741-3011 or
Toll Free: 1-800-449-8366+1+ last four digits of office phone number.
It has become clear that pro-abortion members of the Legislature are determined to avoid a public vote on this resolution during election year, especially those running for re-election in pro-life districts. Tremendous pro-abortion pressure is being exerted upon pro-life leaders such as Lt. Governor John Wilder (D-Somerville.) Please take a moment to thank Lt. Governor Wilder for his longtime pro-life support and to ask him to use his influence in the state Senate to move SJR 127 forward.
On a matter of life and death, every Tennessean should have a say.
Let the People Vote! Support SJR 127 Now!
Senate Joint Resolution 127 (SJR 127) calls for a public vote on an amendment to the Tennessee Constitution which would make clear that there is no ‘right to abortion’ in our state Constitution. This amendment is necessary as a result of a terrible 4-1 ruling by the state Supreme Court in 2000 that the Tennessee Constitution protects an even more ‘fundamental’ and broader right to abortion than Roe v. Wade or the U.S. Constitution.

As a result of the state court’s ruling in Planned Parenthood v. Sundquist, even the most basic pro-life protections were stripped off the books, protections which included informed consent for women considering abortion, a 48 hour waiting period and a requirement that abortions after 14 weeks be performed in regulated and equipped hospitals rather than abortion clinics.

If passed by the Senate Finance Committee on February 24, the resolution is expected to go to the full Senate for debate. A similar resolution passed the Senate 21-10 in 2001 but was derailed in a hostile House sub-committee, despite the support of 54 House co-sponsors.

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