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Tennesseans silenced in school funding debate

by PRIDE Newsdesk

Karen Camper fell ill from COVID after attending the Tennessee Legislative Special Session in August.

Tennessee House Minority Leader Karen Camper expressed her disappointment over the sudden ending of the debate on the Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement (TISA) bill on Wednesday on the House floor.

“It is hard to express how upsetting it was when the debate over TISA ended prematurely,” said Camper. “This is a truly monumental piece of legislation. Educating our children is one of the most important things we do as a legislature and as a state. How can you cut off debate when our constituents have so many questions about this plan? They send us to Nashville to ask those questions on their behalf. Today their voices were silenced, and it is not right to do that to taxpaying Tennesseans.”

Camper said the cessation of debate may be part of a larger pattern.

“This the second day in a row that a full debate on important issues to Tennesseans was cut short on the House floor,” said Camper. “On Tuesday, the debate was halted early on three separate pieces of legislation that Democratic lawmakers were hoping to fully discuss. Two were detrimental to the LBGTQ community: a ban on allowing transgender athletes to compete in college sports, and one that will let teachers ignore a student’s pronoun of choice. The third would allow the state to overrule local municipalities and allow a fuel pipeline to be built through local neighborhoods over their objections. Today debate was halted on the discussion on how we provide education to Tennessee’s children, something that is so important it is included in our state constitution. As Democrats, we represent millions of Tennesseans, and their voices cannot be silenced.”

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