Political news

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

The 20-week abortion measure is on its way to Gov. Bill Haslam's desk, as weeks of back and forth in the Tennessee legislature came to a head Wednesday on the floor of the state House of Representatives with a final round of heated debate.

The measure requires women to undergo additional testing if their doctors believe a fetus is past 20 weeks. If it's determined to be viable, an abortion could be performed only to protect the mother's life.

Bill Dunn
Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

The Tennessee House has approved a measure that would make it easier — and possibly lucrative — for groups like the National Rifle Association to sue local governments over gun bans.

Supporters hope the proposal will have the effect of toppling some of the few remaining gun-free zones, such as transit stations.

Nashville MTA bus photo
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

A measure that could effectively allow guns on city buses and inside stations is close to passing the Tennessee legislature.

The Senate Finance Committee approved the proposal on Tuesday, sending it to the floor for a final vote within the next few days. The state House of Representatives is scheduled to take the measure up on Wednesday.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Tennessee lawmakers are close to approving one of the toughest abortion laws in the nation — a measure that could open doctors to criminal prosecution if they perform abortions after 20 weeks.

That's even though both sides agree abortions that late in pregnancy almost never happen in Tennessee.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Not every bill that becomes Tennessee law requires a fight. After the legislative session's lengthy debate over the gas tax and ongoing disputes over abortion and gun laws, it's easy to forget there are some meaningful bipartisan bills that breeze through.

WPLN’s Jason Moon Wilkins and Chas Sisk talk about some issues where state lawmakers seem to be singing from the same songbook.

Chas Sisk / WPLN (File photo)

Black lawmakers in the Tennessee legislature are seething over a resolution honoring Nathan Bedford Forrest.

The measure was slipped through the state House of Representatives two weeks ago. Now legislators are saying they're trying to figure out a way to take it back.

The dispute has rekindled a debate over Forrest, a Confederate general and slave trader. One that Republicans and Democrats had thought they'd avoided this year.

Tennessee gay marriage
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN (File photo)

Mother. Father. Husband. Wife.

What do words like that mean in the context of same-sex marriage?

Tennessee lawmakers say they should mean what they have in the past, and that has LGBT rights groups worried.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Plans to set up a school voucher program are dead in the Tennessee state legislature, once again.

The proposal would have created a pilot program for low-income students assigned to struggling schools in Memphis. They would've been able to use the vouchers in private schools.

TN State Library & Archives

Governor Bill Haslam is calling for spending $55 million more next year to jumpstart road construction — as well as millions more for mental health, disability service providers and a new Library & Archives building — as part of a supplemental spending plan released Tuesday morning.

The budget measure is one of the last things state lawmakers consider before adjourning for the year.

Courtesy of Montgomery County Veterans Coalition

The governor's hallmark legislation this year — increasing the gas tax — included a late addition: a provision that cuts property taxes for veterans who are fully disabled. The change comes as veterans are mobilizing more in Tennessee politics.