World Tennessee GOP Reps Threaten to Defund Health Dept. Over 'Targeting' Kids With Vaccine Info
State GOPs Can’t Explain Millions In ‘Trump Victory’ Cash
Months after the Federal Election Commission notified several GOP state parties of major gaps in their 2020 fundraising and spending reports, the committees are correcting their numbers—but they still can’t explain why the discrepancies occurred. The issue has raised new questions about possible abuse of a longstanding campaign finance loophole that allows wealthy megadonors to cut massive checks. Last year a number of Republican state parties failed to disclose transfers in the hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions, of dollars, which violates reporting requirements.
Republican lawmakers in Tennessee questioned health officials Wednesday over the perception that the state's health department is pressuring kids to get the COVID-19 vaccination without their parent's knowledge. Some Republican state legislators are threatening to defund the Tennessee Department of Health unless they stop "target[ing] children."
Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey was questioned by Rep. Iris Rudder of Winchester at a hearing at the state Capitol, Wednesday. Rudder held up one of the State Department's social media ads featuring a happy teenager with a bandage on her arm.
Migrant childrens' flights prompt Iowa, Tennessee governors to demand answers from Biden administration
The governors of Iowa and Tennessee are calling for hearings into what they describe as a lack of transparency from the Biden administration about the transportation of unaccompanied migrant children into their states. Govs. Kim Reynolds and Bill Lee wrote to Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, backing his calls for a hearing into the crisis at the southern border -- and calling for it to include "the Biden administration’s failure to provide notice and transparency in their movement of unaccompanied migrant children into states.
"It's not your business to target children. It's your business to inform the parent that their child is eligible for the vaccination," she told the health commissioner. "So I would encourage you before our next meeting to get things like this off your website."
The clash between the health department and the Republican legislators arose from a letter sent to Tennessee vaccine providers back in May. The letter shared information about a Tennessee doctrine that would legally allow providers to administer vaccinations to minors, ages 14 through 17.
"Given the May 12, 2021 vote by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices to recommend the use of's COVID-19 vaccine in children ages 12 through 15 years of age, I thought it would be helpful to share Tennessee's "mature minor" doctrine with our vaccinating partners," the letter said.
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A Republican analyst, who voted for Trump, suggested the GOP-backed audit would present its "new record" as the "truth."The audit of Maricopa County's 2.1 million ballots has been widely criticized, including by a number of Republicans. Arizona's Republican state Senate President Karen Fann and fellow state GOP lawmakers pushed forward the audit based on former President Donald Trump's baseless claims that the 2020 election was "rigged" or "stolen" by President Joe Biden and the Democrats.
Sen. Kerry Roberts of Springfield brought up anecdotes, rather than specific examples, of hypothetical adults pressuring teens to get vaccinations during the hearing.
"A football coach or a band director or a drama teacher or whoever it is, ought not be to be telling kids, 'Hey, just come and get done so you don't have to sit out,' " he said at Wednesday's hearing. "We're getting to the point we're getting proactive, we're meddling."
There is only evidence of eight minors getting vaccinated without parents present, according to WPLN-FM. Five of them were already seeing a provider for other services and decided to add the shot to their visit as a convenience.
And the other three minors, Dr. Piercey said, were her own children, "who I sent unaccompanied to get their second dose because they're 16 and their mom works."
Piercy said her department has not told teachers to pressure children into getting COVID-19 vaccinations.
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"If you will allow me to speak somewhat frankly," she told the Government Operations Committee, "I think there's a sense that we are hiding in dark alleys and whispering to kids, 'Hey, come get vaccinated.' We're not. We're not doing that. We're not encouraging that."
The "mature minor" doctrine is mostly about allowing the minor children of undocumented migrants who don't want to interact with the state to get the shot, according to Piercy, who also says that in most cases, parents should be in the loop.
Republicans have scheduled another hearing in July to discuss dissolving the Tennessee Health Department if they don't change their messaging.
Newsweek has reached out to Senator Kerry Roberts,Chair of the Government Operations Committee for comment.
The GOP’s Sharia Law Liars Are Hyping Critical Race Theory Now .
Save yourselves! Run from the latest menace unleashed by the Marxist forces of wokeness to indoctrinate our children, replace our democracy and threaten our cherished American values! Critical Race Theory is right around the corner! If we don’t immediately cancel and ban it, it will soon take over the country and transform our innocent, naive youth into anti-American socialists who reject the gospel of capitalism, believe structural racism exists, empathize with BLM, call out white privilege, kneel during the national anthem to protest police brutality, and acknowledge that the founding fathers were also slave holders.