Subject: TFA -- "Red Flag" may be in peril - Civil Immunity to be heard next week

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March 29, 2019


We are starting to hear talk that the Tennessee Legislature may adjourn perhaps as early as mid-May, 2019. If so, the next six weeks promise to be really business, full of dirty tricks and overflowing with shenanigans.

One of the most watched attacks on our rights is Republican Senator Steve Dickerson’s gun confiscation legislation (Senate Bill 1178 – also known as a “Red Flag” law). This bill exhibits many of the worst traits of the legislative practices including filing a short bill only to offer a massive rewrite and overhaul at the last minute. That stunt was discussed early this week on the TFA’s news post which discussed the 19 page proposed amendment which the Legislature still has not posted to the website for public review or preparation. This bill is presently set for the Senate Judiciary on April 2. However, we have been notified from the Senate Judiciary offices that Senator Dickerson may have consented to move the bill to “General Sub” which would as a practical matter stop the bill for this year. We will need to wait and see on Tuesday. However, you still need to take note of who supported this bill and who came out clearly and forcefully against it because 2020 is an election year

Another high interest bill is House Bill 409 / Senate Bill 1275 which makes some important improves to Tennessee’s civil immunity laws as they apply to self-defense situations. The bill was amended in the House Constitutional Protections Subcommittee but the amendment is NOT available (which seems to be the norm) on the state’s website. The bill is set for the House Judiciary committee on April 3 and needs call of support!!!

House Bill 626 / Senate Bill 590 is one which seeks to impose limits on the ability of citizens and interested parties to file “open records requests” and receive copies of public records or communications. This is a dangerous move since it could materially impair the right of the public to obtain or review government records if the government officials could make a claim that the records requests were “harassment”. This is a dangerous “shield the government” bill and should be stopped. It is set for hearing on April 2 in the House Civil Justice Subcommittee which is chaired by Rep. Mike Carter. Call to stop this bill.

House Bill 801 / Senate Bill 813 is another bill, like Dickerson’s Gun Confiscation Legislation, that pairs a Republican sponsor with a Democrat sponsor to create a gun control bill that unnecessary and should be stopped. This bill would make it a crime to leave a firearm or ammunition in a boat (perhaps a houseboat) or a motor vehicle (perhaps an SUV, an RV or even a tourbus) in which an individual under the age of 19 is present unless the gun and the ammunition is in a locked container. This is another bad idea that should have never been filed. It is scheduled for a hearing on April 3 in the House Constitutional Protections Subcommittee which is chaired by Rep. James (Micah) Van Huss. Call to stop this bill.

House Bill 1427 / Senate Bill 1010 is a horrible idea in the body of a horrible bill. The bill seeks to make it a crime to “transfer” a firearm between individuals (perhaps friends) unless the transfer is handled by a federal firearms dealer and there is a background check performed as would be required for any other dealer transfer. The bill might even make it a crime for individuals to share weapons at a gun range or even shooting on private property. It is scheduled for a hearing on April 3 in the House Constitutional Protections Subcommittee which is chaired by Rep. James (Micah) Van Huss. Call to stop this bill.

House Bill 1428 / Senate Bill 1011 is yet another horrible idea in the body of a horrible bill. The bill seeks to make it a crime to “transfer” a firearm to someone who cannot legally purchase or possess a firearm under state or federal law. But the bill is a disaster. It says “prohibited from purchasing or possessing” the firearm under state or federal law. For some people, they cannot purchase under the law from an FFL because the gun is a handgun and they are in the ages 18-20 but the law allows that person to purchase a gun in a causal sale. Is that a violation of the bill? What about a parent giving a shotgun to a 16 year old? The 16 year old can possess and even own firearms legally but cannot purchase them at that age from a FFL. It is scheduled for a hearing on April 3 in the House Constitutional Protections Subcommittee which is chaired by Rep. James (Micah) Van Huss. Call to stop this bill.

Did you notice that most of the bills that are moving or which are set to be heard are bills that would further weaken or infringe our rights? Are you asking yourselves why this would be happening in a state where the entire state government is supposedly under the unbridled control of Republicans?

Please contact your legislators concerning these bills. It is important that we keep reminding them about the bills which remove infringements on our rights but it perhaps more important that we demand as voters that they put a stop to any proposed legislation the detracts to the smallest degree from our constitutionally protected rights

The bill status report and the bill calendar can be accessed through the TFA's website at this page

It is important that you review these reports and contact committee members and your individual legislators with your opinions, particularly your support or opposition.

Committee compositions, calendars and members are found on the State Website

You can look up your individual legislators on the State’s “Find my Legislator” page.


John Harris
Executive Director

Joining and supporting TFA is an investment in the fight to restore our constitutional rights and to fight against politicians who are willing to sell their votes and your rights to whichever business interest gives them the most money!


TFA Website: www.tennesseefirearms.com
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