Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam has
called on lawmakers to drop state Senator Stacey Campfield's Don't
Say Gay bill, Nashville
Public Radio reported.
The House Education Committee
considering the bill put off debate on Monday after meeting privately
with an official from Haslam's office.
The proposed legislation would outlaw
the discussion of sexual minorities in Tennessee's public schools
before the ninth grade.
A last-minute amendment offered last
year by Republican Senator Kerry Roberts helped the bill clear the
Senate with a 20-10 vote.
The amendment strikes out language that
limited the discussion of sexual orientation to heterosexuality
before the ninth grade, replacing it with language that limits the
discussion to “natural human reproduction science.” Campfield
said the language would stamp out discussion of homosexuality since
gay people cannot reproduce.
Haslam, who wants the bill amended to
keep it from interfering with an anti-bullying law, told reporters
that he doesn't think it's a priority.
“I've said before I don't think that
should be a priority of the Legislature. I think there's other
things that we can and should be focused on right now, and I've been
up front about that from the very beginning,” he said.
Lawmakers tabled consideration of the
measure until next week.
Haslam signs law banning gay protections.)