Tennessee house passes bill to make the Bible the official state book
In a controversial move, Tennessee lawmakers are pushing to make the Bible the official state book.
Recently, the Tennessee House of Representatives, currently controlled by Republicans, passed the measure to name the bible the state book, and the Senate could see a bill as soon as Thursday for the same issue.
However, despite strong urging from Representative Bud Hulsey, who said that they needed to pass this bill “now more than ever,” there are people on both sides of the debate that oppose this law.
Several representatives pointed out the legal concerns of passing such a law, pondering whether or not the change was constitutional and questioning whether or not Tennessee could afford to enter a legal battle over the bill. Representative Marc Gravitt noted the attorney general’s legal opinion stating that the legal costs to defend the bill would total millions and that Tennessee would still likely lose the battle.
“The controversy will not end in this chamber,” Representative Martin Daniel said. “If we pass this, we’re going to be ridiculed.”
Other representatives see the bill as disrespectful, saying that the Bible is more than simple a book to be put in the same category as the state song or state tree. Republican Governor Bill Haslam has said that the bill disrespects what the Bible is.