Tennessee House of Representatives

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Tennessee House of Representatives
Tennessee General Assembly
Coat of arms or logo
Type
Type
Term limits
None
History
New session started
January 8, 2019
Leadership
Cameron Sexton (R)
since August 23, 2019
Speaker pro Tempore
Pat Marsh (R)
since January 12, 2021
Majority Leader
William Lamberth (R)
since January 8, 2019
Minority Leader
Karen Camper (D)
since January 8, 2019
Structure
Seats99
Tennessee House.svg
Political groups
Majority
  •   Republican (73)

Minority

Length of term
2 years
AuthorityArticle III, Tennessee Constitution
Salary$19,009/year
per diem
employee benefits[1]
travel reimbursement
Elections
Last election
November 3, 2020
(99 seats)
Next election
November 8, 2022
(99 seats)
RedistrictingLegislative Control
Meeting place
Tennessee state capitol house chamber 2002.jpg
House of Representatives Chamber
Tennessee State Capitol
Nashville, Tennessee
Website
Tennessee House of Representatives

The Tennessee House of Representatives is the lower house of the Tennessee General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. state of Tennessee.

Constitutional requirements[edit]

According to the state constitution of 1870, this body is to consist of 99 members elected for two-year terms. In every even-numbered year, elections for state representative are conducted simultaneously with the elections for U.S. Representative and other offices; the primary election being held on the first Thursday in August. Seats which become vacant through death or resignation are filled by the county commission (or metropolitan county council) of the home county of the member vacating the seat; if more than a year remains in the term a special election is held for the balance of the term.

Districts[edit]

Members are elected from single-member districts. The districts are traditionally numbered consecutively from east to west and north to south across the state; however, in recent redistricting this convention has not always been strictly adhered to, despite a constitutional provision requiring districts to be numbered consecutively.

Districts are required to be reapportioned every ten years following the federal census in order to be of substantially equal population. However, from 1902 until 1962, the General Assembly ignored this provision. It was estimated that by that point that some districts in the Memphis area had approximately ten times the population of some in rural areas. In 1962 this issue was taken to court. Despite U.S. courts having traditionally declined to rule on such issues, the US Supreme Court opted to hear this case and ruled that the legislature had to comply with the state constitution, as its failure to do so was in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (see Baker v. Carr). Subsequent litigation has further refined the rules regarding this; in the late 1990s a majority-black district in rural West Tennessee was required to be created.

The 1960s redistricting was credited by some observers with creating the first Republican majority in the Tennessee House since Reconstruction in 1968; this situation lasted only until the next election in 1970. 1970 also marked the first election of a Republican governor in a half century and saw both houses of the legislature begin to assert themselves as a counterbalance to executive authority; prior to this time legislators had not had their own staffs or even their own offices and were largely at the mercy of what the governor's staff chose to tell them and in many ways were often something of a "rubber stamp."

Speaker of the House[edit]

The Speaker of the House of Representatives is the presiding officer of the House. The Speaker is elected to a two-year term at the beginning of the 1st half of each session of the Tennessee General Assembly. Additionally, the Speaker is second in line for succession to the governorship, after the Speaker of the Senate, in the event of such need. The Speaker appoints members to all committees as well. Even though the Speaker does not have to make committee assignments proportional to the party composition, usually that discretion is used when determining such. Usually, consideration of the abilities, preferences, party representation, and seniority of the members are taken into account. The chairperson, vice chairperson, and secretary of each committee also are chosen by the Speaker and must be given the same considerations in their selection. The Speaker is a voting member of all standing committees of the House, as is the Speaker pro Tempore. The Speaker also serves as co-chairperson of the Joint Legislative Services Committee and must approve, in concurrence with the Speaker of the Senate, the directors of the offices of Legislative Information Services, Legal Services, Legislative Administration, and Legislative Budget Analysis. Additionally, the Speaker is in charge of all facilities, professional and clerical staff, and custodians and security personnel of the House.[2]

The current speaker is Cameron Sexton, who represents Tennessee's 25th district.[3]

Composition of the 112th General Assembly[edit]

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Total
Republican Democratic Vacant
End of previous legislature 72 26 99 0
Beginning of 112th General Assembly 73 26 99 0
Latest voting share 73.7% 26.3%

Officers[4][edit]

  • Speaker of the House: Cameron Sexton (R)
  • Speaker Pro Tempore: Pat Marsh (R)
  • Deputy Speaker: Curtis Johnson (R)
Majority Party (R) Leadership Position Minority Party (D)
William Lamberth Leader Karen Camper
Ron Gant Assistant Leader Harold M. Love Jr.
Jeremy Faison Caucus Chairperson Vincent Dixie
Brandon Ogles Caucus Vice Chairperson Bob Freeman
Johnny Garrett Whip Jason Powell
Paul Sherrell Floor Leader Bill Beck
Michele Carringer Caucus Secretary London Lamar
Mark Cochran Caucus Treasurer Jesse Chism

Members[edit]

District Name Party First Elected Residence Counties Represented
1 John Crawford Republican 2016 Kingsport Part of Sullivan
2 Bud Hulsey Republican 2014 Kingsport Part of Sullivan
3 Scotty Campbell Republican 2020 Blountville Johnson, and parts of Carter and Sullivan County
4 John Holsclaw Jr. Republican 2014 Johnson City Unicoi and part of Carter County
5 David B. Hawk Republican 2002 Greeneville Part of Greene County
6 Tim Hicks Republican 2020 Jonesborough Part of Washington County
7 Rebecca Alexander Republican 2020 Jonesborough Part of Washington County
8 Jerome Moon Republican 2017 Maryville Part of Blount County
9 Gary Hicks Republican 2016 Rogersville Hancock and Hawkins Counties
10 Rick Eldridge Republican 2018 Morristown Hamblen County
11 Jeremy Faison Republican 2010 Cosby Cocke and parts of Jefferson and Greene Counties
12 Dale Carr Republican 2012 Sevierville Part of Sevier County
13 Gloria Johnson Democratic 2018 Knoxville Part of Knox County
14 Jason Zachary Republican 2015 Knoxville Part of Knox County
15 Sam McKenzie Democratic 2020 Knoxville Part of Knox County
16 Michele Carringer Republican 2020 Knoxville Part of Knox County
17 Andrew Farmer Republican 2012 Sevierville Part of Jefferson and Sevier Counties
18 Eddie Mannis Republican 2020 Knoxville Part of Knox County
19 Dave Wright Republican 2018 Corryton Part of Knox County
20 Bob Ramsey Republican 2008 Maryville Part of Blount County
21 Lowell Russell Republican 2018 Vonore Parts of Loudon and Monroe Counties
22 Dan Howell Republican 2014 Cleveland Meigs, Polk and part of Bradley Counties
23 Mark Cochran Republican 2018 Englewood McMinn and part of Monroe County
24 Mark Hall Republican 2018 Cleveland Part of Bradley County
25 Cameron Sexton Republican 2010 Crossville Cumberland, Van Buren, and part of Putnam County
26 Robin Smith Republican 2018 Hixson Part of Hamilton County
27 Patsy Hazlewood Republican 2014 Signal Mountain Part of Hamilton County
28 Yusuf Hakeem Democratic 2018 Chattanooga Part of Hamilton County
29 Greg Vital Republican 2021 Part of Hamilton County
30 Esther Helton Republican 2018 East Ridge Part of Hamilton County
31 Ron Travis Republican 2012 Dayton Bledsoe, Sequatchie, Rhea and part of Roane County
32 Kent Calfee Republican 2012 Kingston Part of Roane and Loudon Counties
33 John Ragan Republican 2010 Oak Ridge Part of Anderson County
34 Tim Rudd Republican 2016 Murfreesboro Part of Rutherford County
35 Jerry Sexton Republican 2014 Bean Station Claiborne, Grainger and part of Union County
36 Dennis Powers Republican 2010 Jacksboro Campbell and parts of Union and Anderson Counties
37 Charlie Baum Republican 2018 Murfreesboro Part of Rutherford County
38 Kelly Keisling Republican 2010 Byrdstown Macon, Clay, Pickett, Scott, and part of Fentress County
39 Iris Rudder Republican 2018 Winchester Moore and parts of Franklin and Marion Counties
40 Terri Lynn Weaver Republican 2008 Lancaster Smith, Trousdale and parts of DeKalb and Sumner Counties
41 John Windle Democratic 1990 Livingston Morgan, Jackson and Overton and part of Fentress County
42 Ryan Williams Republican 2010 Cookeville Part of Putnam County
43 Paul Sherrell Republican 2016 Sparta White, Grundy and part of Warren Counties
44 William Lamberth Republican 2012 Portland Part of Sumner County
45 Johnny Garrett Republican 2018 Goodlettsville Part of Sumner County
46 Clark Boyd Republican 2018 Lebanon Cannon, and parts of Wilson and DeKalb Counties
47 Rush Bricken Republican 2018 Tullahoma Coffee and part of Warren County
48 Bryan Terry Republican 2018 Murfreesboro Part of Rutherford County
49 Mike Sparks Republican 2010 Smyrna Part of Rutherford County
50 Bo Mitchell Democratic 2012 Nashville Part of Davidson County
51 Bill Beck Democratic 2014 Madison Part of Davidson County
52 Mike Stewart Democratic 2008 Nashville Part of Davidson County
53 Jason Powell Democratic 2012 Nashville Part of Davidson County
54 Vincent Dixie Democratic 2018 Nashville Part of Davidson County
55 John Ray Clemmons Democratic 2014 Nashville Part of Davidson County
56 Bob Freeman Democratic 2018 Nashville Part of Davidson County
57 Susan Lynn Republican 2013 Mt. Juliet Part of Wilson County
58 Harold M. Love Jr. Democratic 2012 Nashville Part of Davidson County
59 Jason Potts Democratic 2018 Nashville Part of Davidson County
60 Darren Jernigan Democratic 2012 Old Hickory Part of Davidson County
61 Brandon Ogles Republican 2018 Franklin Part of Williamson County
62 Pat Marsh Republican 2009 Shelbyville Bedford and part of Lincoln County
63 Glen Casada Republican 2001 Franklin Part of Williamson County
64 Scott Cepicky Republican 2018 Culleoka Part of Maury County
65 Sam Whitson Republican 2016 Franklin Part of Williamson County
66 Sabi "Doc" Kumar Republican 2014 Springfield Robertson County
67 Jason Hodges Democratic 2018 Clarksville Part of Montgomery County
68 Curtis Johnson Republican 2004 Clarksville Part of Montgomery County
69 Michael Curcio Republican 2016 Dickson Hickman and parts of Maury and Dickson Counties
70 Clay Doggett Republican 2018 Pulaski Giles and part of Lawrence County
71 David Byrd Republican 2014 Waynesboro Hardin, Lewis, Wayne and part of Lawrence Counties
72 Kirk Haston Republican 2018 Lobelville Henderson, Chester, Decatur and Perry Counties
73 Chris Todd Republican 2018 Humboldt Part of Madison County
74 Jay Reedy Republican 2014 Erin Houston, Humphreys and part of Montgomery County
75 Bruce Griffey Republican 2018 Paris Henry, Benton and Stewart Counties
76 Tandy Darby Republican 2020 Dresden Weakley, and parts of Obion and Carroll Counties
77 Rusty Grills Republican 2020 Newbern Dyer, Lake and part of Obion County
78 Mary Littleton Republican 2012 Dickson Cheatham and part of Dickson Counties
79 Curtis Halford Republican 2008 Dyer Gibson and part of Carroll County
80 Johnny Shaw Democratic 2000 Bolivar Parts of Hardeman and Madison Counties
81 Debra Moody Republican 2012 Covington Tipton County
82 Chris Hurt Republican 2018 Halls Lauderdale, Crockett and Haywood Counties
83 Mark White Republican 2010 Memphis Part of Shelby County
84 Joe Towns Democratic 1994 Memphis Part of Shelby County
85 Jesse Chism Democratic 2018 Memphis Part of Shelby County
86 Barbara Cooper Democratic 1996 Memphis Part of Shelby County
87 Karen Camper Democratic 2008 Memphis Part of Shelby County
88 Larry Miller Democratic 1992 Memphis Part of Shelby County
89 Justin Lafferty Republican 2018 Knoxville Part of Knox County
90 Torrey Harris Democratic 2020 Memphis Part of Shelby County
91 London Lamar Democratic 2018 Memphis Part of Shelby County
92 Todd Warner Republican 2020 Lewisburg Marshall and parts of Franklin, Lincoln, and Marion Counties
93 G. A. Hardaway Democratic 2006 Memphis Part of Shelby County
94 Ron Gant Republican 2016 Rossville Fayette, McNairy and part of Hardeman Counties
95 Kevin Vaughan Republican 2017 Collierville Part of Shelby County
96 Dwayne Thompson Democratic 2016 Cordova Part of Shelby County
97 John Gillespie Republican 2020 Memphis Part of Shelby County
98 Antonio Parkinson Democratic 2011 Memphis Part of Shelby County
99 Tom Leatherwood Republican 2018 Arlington Part of Shelby County

House Committees[edit]

Committees, subcommittees, and their leadership for the 112th General Assembly are as follows:[5]

Standing Committees
Committees Chair Vice Chair Subcommittees
Agriculture and Natural Resources Rep. Curtis Halford (R) Rep. Rusty Grills (R) Agriculture and Natural Resources, Chair: Rep. Chris Todd (R)
Calendar and Rules Rep. Jason Zachary (R) Rep. Lowell Russell (R)
Civil Justice Vacant Rep. Darren Jernigan (D) Civil Justice, Chair: Rep. Andrew Farmer (R)

Children and Family Affairs, Chair: Rep. Mary Littleton (R)

Commerce Rep. Kevin Vaughn (R) Rep. Rush Bricken (R) Banking and Consumer Affairs, Chair: Rep. Dennis Powers (R)

Business and Utilities, Chair: Rep. Clark Boyd (R)

Criminal Justice Rep. Michael Curcio (R) Rep. Jerry Sexton (R) Criminal Justice, Chair: Rep. Clay Doggett (R)
Education Administration Rep. Mark White (R) Rep. Chris Hurt (R) K-12, Chair: Rep. Kirk Haston (R)

Higher Education, Chair: Rep. Justin Lafferty (R)

Education Instruction Rep. Debra Moody (R) Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver (R) Education Instruction, Chair: Rep. Scott Cepicky (R)
Finance, Ways, and Means Rep. Patsy Hazelwood (R) Rep. Charlie Baum (R) Finance, Ways, and Means, Chair: Rep. Gary. Hicks (R)

Appropriations , Chair: Rep. Ryan Williams (R)

Government Operations Rep. John Ragan (R) Rep. Jay Reedy (R)
Health Rep. Bryan Terry (R) Rep. Tom Leatherwood (R) Health, Chair: Rep. Bob Ramsey (R)
Insurance Rep. Sabi Kumar (R) Rep. Iris Rudder (R) Insurance, Chair: Rep. David Hawk (R)
Local Rep. John Crawford (R) Rep. Dave Wright (R) Cities, Chair: Rep. Jerome Moon (R)

Elections and Campaign Finance, Chair: Rep. Tim Rudd (R)

Property and Planning, Chair: Rep. Dale Carr (R)

Naming and Designating Rep. John Mark Windle (D) Rep. David Byrd (R)
State Rep. Kelly Keisling (R) Rep. Rick Eldridge (R) Corrections, Chair: Rep. Bud Hulsey (R)

Departments and Agencies, Chair: Rep. John Holsclaw (R)

Public Service, Chair: Rep. Esther Helton (R)

Transportation Rep. Dan Howell (R) Rep. Mark Hall (R) Transportation, Chair: Rep. Sam Whitson (R)
Select Committees
Committees Chair Subcommittees
Rules Rep. Pat Marsh (R)
Ethics Rep. Curtis Johnson (R) Ethics, Chair: Rep. Pat Marsh (R)

Education level among members[edit]

Among Republicans, around 30% of all members hold no degree beyond high school completion, less than 20% hold a Master's or other post baccalaureate degree, and less than 10% have a law degree. Among Democrats, of whom there are a substantially lower number, 15% hold no degree beyond high school, around 30% hold a Master's or other post baccalaureate degree, and 25% have a law degree.[6]

Diversity among Representatives[edit]

November 2020 saw the election of first openly LGBT+ people ever to hold seats in Tennessee's state house of representatives,[7] Democrat Torrey Harris and Republican Eddie Mannis.[8] Before November 3, 2020, Tennessee was one of just five states in the nation (others being Alaska, Delaware, Louisiana and Mississippi) to have never elected an out LGBT+ person to its state legislature.[9]

Of its 99 members,[10] twenty-one were women[11] in 2020. Representatives Harold Love[12] and Raumesh Akbari hold leadership roles in the National Black Caucus of State Legislators,[13] in which eight Tennessee state lawmakers are members. Akbari is also a State Director with Women in Government, as is Brenda Gilmore.[14]

Past composition of the House of Representatives[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://www.tn.gov/hr/employees1/benefits.html "Benefits". Tennessee Department of Human Resources."
  2. ^ "Speaker of the House of Representatives - Tennessee General Assembly". www.capitol.tn.gov. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  3. ^ Allison, Natalie; Ebert, Joel. "House Speaker Cameron Sexton officially sworn in, succeeding ousted Speaker Glen Casada". The Tennessean. Retrieved October 29, 2019.
  4. ^ "House Leadership - TN General Assembly". www.capitol.tn.gov. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  5. ^ "Legislative House Committees - TN General Assembly". www.capitol.tn.gov. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  6. ^ "House Members - TN General Assembly". www.capitol.tn.gov. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  7. ^ Stockard, Sam; November 4, Tennessee Lookout; 2020 (November 4, 2020). "Legislature sees little change but first LGBT members". Tennessee Lookout. Retrieved January 15, 2021.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  8. ^ "For The First Time, Tennessee Voters Elect Two LGBT State Lawmakers". WPLN News - Nashville Public Radio. November 4, 2020. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  9. ^ "Tennessee – yes, Tennessee – just elected out LGBT+ lawmakers for the first time". PinkNews - Gay news, reviews and comment from the world's most read lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans news service. November 4, 2020. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  10. ^ Inc, US Legal. "Tennessee State Legislature – System". system.uslegal.com. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  11. ^ "Women in State Legislatures for 2020". www.ncsl.org. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  12. ^ "Harold Love". Ballotpedia. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  13. ^ "NBCSL | State Leadership". nbcsl.org. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  14. ^ "Gilmore & Akbari elected to leadership role with Women In Government". Nashville PRIDE, Inc. January 20, 2015. Retrieved January 15, 2021.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°09′56″N 86°47′03″W / 36.1656°N 86.7841°W / 36.1656; -86.7841