TN Politics: Gov. Lee Spurs Debate over School Vouchers, Excitement for Criminal Justice Reform

Mar 8, 2019

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee during his 2019 State of the State Address.

On Monday night, Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee delivered his first State of the State Address, in which he laid out his budget priorities. As expected, Lee focused heavily on education and criminal justice. 

Political analyst Otis Sanford says that while certain facets of his plan have gotten bipartisan support, school vouchers is not among them. Democrats and teachers unions aren't keen on seeing money that would go to public schools being shifted to private schools. Lee says he would initially make up the difference in lost revenue at already struggling schools. 

On Criminal Justice, Lee joins other Republican governors -- including Phil Bryant of Mississippi -- in implementing sentencing reforms many credit President Donald Trump for championing on a federal level.