Tennessee House of Representatives Capitol Hill Review
Posted: Tuesday, May 24, 2011 1:59 pm
By: Rep. Andy Holt, Special to The Press
Pro-Life Constitutional Amendment Advances in House
On Wednesday, House Republicans moved the legislation that will amend the State’s Constitution. SJR 127 is a constitutional amendment that, when passed, will bring the Constitution of the State of Tennessee back to a position of neutrality regarding abortion. Once again, SJR 127 enjoys bi-partisan support.
The amendment is intended to restore to the people of Tennessee, acting through their elected state representatives and state senators, their rightful authority to regulate abortion, all within federal constitutional limits.
The Republican sponsor stated, “This amendment restores protections for citizens through common sense measures regarding a very personal matter in the lives of many women. It is important to note this amendment does not outlaw or criminalize abortion. SJR127 simply restores the authority of the people acting through their elected officials, to legislate abortion. Our State has a strong record of protecting life and this amendment will forever enshrine that principle in our Constitution.”
Republicans fought for the passage of the constitutional amendment for several years, but their efforts were blocked in subcommittees. The process for amending the State’s Constitution is a long one. Joint resolutions must pass one General Assembly by a majority, which Republicans accomplished last year. In the subsequent General Assembly, it must be passed by two-thirds before finally being put to the voters in the next gubernatorial election.
The measure was approved by the House Health & Human Resources Committee. It now goes to Calendar & Rules to be scheduled for full House consideration.
Rep. Andy Holt R-Dresden represents the 76th district in the Tennessee General Assembly House of Representatives. The 76th district is comprised of Weakley County and a portion of Carroll County.