Friday, June 02, 2023

Bellevue Breakfast Club meets this Saturday, June 3rd


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“We Know What a Woman Is!” event, June 5th. Hermitage Hotel

NASHVILLE, T.N. — On Monday, June 5, Independent Women’s Voice (IWV) and Independent Women’s Network (IWN) Nashville Chapter Leader Michelle Parker will hold a “We Know What a Woman Is!” event to celebrate the momentum of the 2023 Women’s Bill of Rights (WBOR). The event will be held at the Hermitage Hotel, the historic site of the final battleground of women’s suffrage.

IWV and IWN are excited to be joined by special guests Lynn Fitch, Attorney General of Mississippi, Jonathan Skrmetti, Attorney General of Tennessee, Tennessee state Senator Kerry Roberts, Tennessee state Representative Gino Bulso, and Riley Gaines, Stand with Women Spokeswoman at Independent Women’s Forum and 12x All-American swimmer.  Earlier this month, Attorneys General Fitch and Skrmetti joined 14 of their fellow Attorneys Generals in committing to support the WBOR. 

WBOR legally defines basic sex-based terms, like ‘woman’ and ‘man,’ and protects the existence of single-sex spaces, such as rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, prisons, athletic teams, locker rooms, and sororities. 

Independent Women’s Voice, Independent Women’s Law Center (IWLC), and Women’s Liberation Front (WoLF) collaborated to draft the model legislation in March 2022. The U.S. Chapter of Women’s Declaration International (WDI, USA) also endorses WBOR.

Thanks to WBOR’s policy champions at the national, state and local levels, in 2023, WBOR supporters include U.S. Representative Diana Harshbarger, 16 Attorneys General, more than 25,000 members of the general public, and various organizations and groups across the political spectrum. WBOR recently became law in Tennessee and Kansas. And, Gaines was recently joined by U.S. Members of Congress on Capitol Hill for a press conference to highlight the need for WBOR legislation, urging consideration by both House and Senate chambers. 

The event will take place in advance of the launch of Independent Women’s Network (IWN) Nashville Chapter later this month. Chapter leader will be Michelle Parker. A retained executive headhunter and strategic hiring advisor by profession, Parker’s advocacy work has been centered around championing women and children. IWN was created to build a supportive community for women and to give them the tools they need to make a positive difference in their neighborhoods and our country.

Members of the press interested in covering the event can RSVP by contacting 

Anyone interested in joining IWN can email



  • Lynn Fitch, Attorney General of Mississippi 
  • Jonathan Skrmetti, Attorney General of Tennessee
  • Kerry Roberts, Tennessee state Senator 
  • Gino Bulso. Tennessee state Representative
  • Riley Gaines, Independent Women’s Forum Spokeswoman and 12x All-American Swimmer 

WHAT: We Know What a Woman Is! A Toast to Celebrate Women’s Bill of Rights Champions

WHEN: Monday, June 5, 2023 from 1:00-2:30 p.m. CT


The Hermitage Hotel

231 6th Avenue N

Nashville, TN37219

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Upcoming Mayoral Forums, June 2 - June 9

by Rod Williams, June 2, 2023- Below is a list of upcoming mayoral forums for the next seven days as published by The Nashville Scene

June 3. Black Nashville Assembly, 1-3 p.m. at Pleasant Green Baptist Church, 1410 Jefferson St. Open to the public? Yes, register at the link. 

June 5. Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition, discussing immigrants and walks of life. 6-8:30 p.m. at Plaza Mariachi, 3955 Nolensville Pike. Open to the public? Yes.

June 6. Nashville Business Journal, 8-10 a.m. at Vanderbilt University Student Life Center, 310 25th Ave. S. Open to the public? Yes, with the purchase of a ticket. 

June 7. Civic Design Center, 6-7:30 p.m. at Boone Convocation Center, 333 Murfreesboro Pike. Open to the public? Yes, free tickets are available on the website. 

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Thursday, June 01, 2023

Most of Tennessee's Republican House delegation would rather face an economic meltdown rather than accept a fiscally responsible compromise.

by Rod Williams, June 1, 2023- I am pleased to see the House of Representatives pass the Fiscal Responsibility Act (FRA) and avoid a catastrophic default. While I wish the bill would have had deeper spending cuts, this looks like the best that could be had. The Congressional Budget Office says this act, which raises the debt limit, will reduce debt levels by roughly $1.5 trillion while also enacting a number of policy reforms. The bill will now move to the Senate where it is expected to quickly pass.

This is what Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said about the bill: 

The Fiscal Responsibility Act is the largest deficit reduction bill in over a decade, and we applaud members of both parties for passing it through the House. After years of making deficits worse, it is refreshing to see bipartisan action toward making them better. The bill represents fiscally responsible policymaking, bipartisanship, and compromise – all things that are necessary to ultimately tackle our out-of-control debt.

Given the nation’s unsustainable fiscal situation, we would have loved to see a larger package of savings more than anyone. It’s easy to sit in the cheap seats and throw grenades but legislating actual deficit reduction is hard, and it shows true leadership to compromise for the good of the country and begin putting the budget on a better path.

This bill will importantly avoid default, and we encourage the Senate to pass the bill and send it to the President’s desk as soon as possible.

The bill passed the Republican-controlled House with majority support from both Democrats and Republicans. The House vote was 314-117. While 71 hardline Republicans voted against the measure, 165 Democrats and 149 Republicans voted for it.  It is disappointing that so many Republicans would prefer an economic meltdown to compromise. 

I commend the more responsible among Tennessee's Republican delegation including my own Representative Mark Green.

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It’s Time for a New Fiscal Commission

 From The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, JUN 1, 2023 -Yesterday, Speaker McCarthy suggested the idea of a bipartisan fiscal commission to explore long-term budgetary issues. 

The following is a statement from Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget:

The Fiscal Responsibility Act will help make important progress in addressing the discretionary side of the federal budget, but much more needs to be done to get the debt under control.

A bipartisan commission would offer policymakers in both parties the opportunity to take a serious look at all parts of the federal budget and tax code and develop a plan to put us on a more sustainable path. In the past, these commissions have helped move the debate forward, developed new ideas and proposals, and sometimes led to major legislative successes.

Any commission must be bipartisan, and should include input from the House, Senate, and President. And the commission only works if everything is on the table – including revenue and including Social Security and Medicare.

The country is facing high inflation, rising interest rates, debt approaching record levels of the economy, surging federal interest costs, and looming trust fund insolvency. It’s time for Democrats and Republicans to come together to tackle these important issues.

Rod's Comment: I agree. We headed for a catastrophe unless we get control of spending.  Anyone who says we must take Social Security and Medicare off the table is not serious about averting the coming disaster.  

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Nashville Mayoral Forum, Wednesday, June 7, 2023, 5:30 PM 7:30 PM

From Civic Design Center, June 1, 2023- The Civic Design Center, Neighbor 2 Neighbor, Transit Alliance of Middle Tennessee, Urban Housing Solutions, and Walk Bike Nashville believe that a more livable city cannot be built in a silo. 

These five local organizations are coming together to host a Mayoral Forum that will cover a breadth of important civic issues: community-based planning, transportation, housing, and safe streets and how the candidate’s view the role of public participation in shaping the future of our city. Without an incumbent on the ticket, the community will be thinking deeply about the values that could influence Nashville’s development over the next 4 years.

Hosted at Trevecca Nazarene University, we will have the capacity to host up to 1000 community members to get civically engaged. Ahead of the Forum, each organization collected surveys from our member communities to help guide the questions for the candidates.

Tickets are free and all are welcome. There will be live Spanish + ASL Translation.

The following candidates have accepted our invitation: Natisha Brooks, Heidi Campbell, Jim Gingrich, Sharon Hurt, Stephanie Johnson, Freddie O’Connell, Alice Rolli, Vivian Wilhoite, Matt Wiltshire, and Jeff Yarbro.

Follow this link to Register.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

$120M of public funds could be used for Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway rebuild

by By Jon Styf, The Center Square, May 30,2023 – The Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway construction still has no final price tag but legislation filed for a first reading from Nashville’s Metropolitan Council potentially on July 6 shows $120 million in public funding could be used for the project.

That plan already includes $34 million, split evenly between the state of Tennessee and a hotel tax fund from Nashville’s Convention and Visitors Corporation, while the documents filed with Metro Council indicate that $86 million in Nashville Sports Authority bonds will be used for the project.

It will cost an estimated $177.5 million to pay off the bonds over the 30-year lease at a 5.31% interest rate – with $6 million to $7 million in annual debt service – using a tax capture that includes ticket tax, rent from Bristol Motor Speedway, a sales tax capture, 5% revenue share, an annual $650,000 payment from the CVC and revenue from advertising and sponsors.

“To start, it's a weird deal because it wasn't accompanied by the typical Mayor's Office fanfare of a press release and media campaign,” Council Member Bob Mendes said. “Also, Council rules don't allow us to consider bond-related legislation while the budget is pending. So first reading may not be until 7/6.”

The deal would build a new 30,000-seat grandstand, track and surrounding structures at the speedway with the plan of bringing a NASCAR race to the stadium. The new track would be run by Bristol Motor Speedway.

As part of the deal, Bristol will keep all proceeds from its four main race weekends.

“This legislation is also weird because there's a city ordinance requiring a community meeting led by the local district council member before the Council may consider the legislation,” Mendes said. “That hasn't happened and isn't scheduled. So I'm not sure the Council can consider it at all.”

Mendes posted a thread regarding the documents related to the proposal, which has not been published publicly.

Mendes pointed out that the legislation allows Bristol Motor Speedway to walk away from the deal after a final price tag is known, despite that public costs already sunk into the proposal.

The proposal is already part of a pending lawsuit over a state law aimed at blocking Metro Council’s rule requiring a supermajority vote to do demolition work at the fairgrounds.

The project’s rebuild would require demolition and Gov. Bill Lee signed a law, sponsored by two legislators from Bristol, in May to block that requirement.

Last week, Metro Nashville sued over the law, claiming it violated the Tennessee Constitution’s Home Rule Amendment Clause by creating legislation that applied to only one municipality, according to documents posted by Tennessee Lookout.

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Gov. Lee Authorizes Tennessee National Guard Deployment to Secure Southern Border

 100 Tennessee troops to curb ongoing border crisis, support Operation Lone Star

NASHVILLE, TN, May 23, 2023– Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee authorized the deployment of 100 Tennessee National Guard troops to secure the U.S. Southern border amid an ongoing national security crisis and surging drug crisis being fueled by an open border.

The announcement follows a joint statement from Gov. Lee and fellow Republican governors last week and a border security briefing in Austin on Monday, where Texas Governor Greg Abbott invited states to support ‘Operation Lone Star’ to secure the U.S. Southern border following the end of Title 42.

“America continues to face an unprecedented border crisis that threatens our nation’s security and the safety of Tennesseans,” said Gov. Lee. “The federal government owes Americans a plan to secure our country, and in the meantime, states continue to answer this important call to service. I am again authorizing the Tennessee National Guard to help secure the Southern border, and I commend these troops for providing critical support.” 

The Tennessee National Guard members will deploy at the end of May to provide critical support along the U.S. Southern border, including: 

  • Patrolling and providing additional security presence along the border
  • Assisting road and route clearance, barrier placement and debris removal
  • Staffing outpost operations

The Tennessee National Guard has supported border security efforts in the past. In December 2021, Gov. Lee authorized 50 additional troops to respond to the surge in illegal crossings and drug-related activity along the U.S. Southern border. Lee also visited more than 300 Tennesseans stationed at the border in July 2021.

“The men and women of the Tennessee National Guard are always ready to serve their country anywhere, anytime,” said Brigadier General Warner Ross, Tennessee’s Adjutant General. “These troops are a capable contingent that will continue our long-standing tradition of responding to the call to aid our fellow Americans.  The Tennessee National Guard is proud to serve and support our state partners in safeguarding the United States along the U.S. Southern border.”

Rod's Comment. I appreciate the symbolism but quite frankly contributing 100 troops does not seem like something to brag about. 

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