NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Rep. Gino Bulso (R-Brentwood) filed a bill that would define the term ‘sex’ as ‘a person’s immutable biological sex as determined by anatomy and genetics existing at the time of birth.’
He said it’s not an anti-LGBTQ+ bill.
“Our goal is to help people, not to harm anyone,” Bulso said. “What this does is provide clarity as to what a statute meant when it was enacted by the General Assembly and signed by our past governors.”
News 2 asked what his response would be if people argued this bill unfairly targets the LGBTQ+ community.
“My response would be that the bill actually provides clarity for a term that’s already in the code,” Bulso said. “The greatest gift that any legislature can give to the judiciary is a clear, succinct piece of legislation.”
It’s a response Democrats took offense with.
“We weren’t born yesterday,” Rep. Gloria Johnson (D-Knoxville) said. “We know hate when we see it, and we will call it out when we see it.”
Johnson echoed a sentiment Democrats have been pushing lately—these types of bills aren’t necessary given the other problems in Tennessee, like issues with DCS, low teacher pay and rural healthcare.
“It’s interesting that all these bills that we absolutely don’t need somehow have to do with the LGBTQ community,” Johnson said.
Still, Bulso feels confident. When asked if he expected opposition, he was clear.
“Frankly, I don’t,” Bulso said. “I think it’s so obvious that when the code uses a term, it’s important to be clear about what it means, that this bill will, most likely, pass overwhelmingly in both houses.”
Hundreds of bills will be up for debate during the 113th General Assembly. Tennessee lawmakers shared their thoughts on some of the major issues up for discussion at this year’s legislative session.
You can also find daily coverage from the session here.