Tennessee Senate(Redirected from Tennessee State Senate)
Senate of Tennessee
|Tennessee General Assembly|
New session started
|January 8, 2019|
Speaker of the Senate
Speaker pro Tempore
Length of term
|Authority||Article III, Tennessee Constitution|
|Salary||$19,009/year + per diem|
|November 6, 2018|
|November 2, 2020|
|State Senate Chamber|
Tennessee State Capitol
The Tennessee Senate, according to the state constitution of 1870, is composed of 33 members, one-third the size of the Tennessee House of Representatives. Senators are to be elected from districts of substantially equal population. According to the constitution, a county is not to be joined to a portion of another county for purposes of creating a district; this provision has been overridden by the rulings of the Supreme Court of the United States in Baker v. Carr (369 U.S. 182, 1962) and Reynolds v. Sims (337 U.S. 356, 1964).
The Tennessee constitution has been amended to allow that if these rulings are ever changed or reversed, a referendum may be held to allow the senate districts to be drawn on a basis other than substantially equal population.
Until 1966, Tennessee state senators served two-year terms. That year the system was changed, by constitutional amendment, to allow four-year terms. In that year, senators in even-numbered districts were elected to two-year terms and those in odd-numbered districts were elected to four-year terms. This created a staggered system in which only half of the senate is up for election at any one time. Districts are to be sequentially and consecutively numbered; the scheme basically runs from east to west and north to south.
Republicans attained an elected majority in the Senate in the 104th General Assembly (2005-2007) for the first time since Reconstruction; a brief majority in the 1990s was the result of two outgoing senators switching parties.
The Senate elects one of its own members as Speaker; the Speaker automatically becomes Lieutenant Governor of Tennessee. The current Speaker of the Senate and Lieutenant Governor is Randy McNally, who was elected to the position in 2017. One of the main duties of the Speaker is to preside over the Senate and make Senate committee appointments. The Speaker also controls staffing and office space with Senate staff. The Speaker serves as an ex-officio member of all standing committees.
Composition of the 111th General Assembly 2019–2021Edit
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
|End of previous legislature||26||0||4||33||3|
|January 18, 2019||26||1||5||32||1|
|Latest voting share||84.4%||15.6%|
Senate Leadership and MembersEdit
- Speaker of the Senate/ Lieutenant Governor: Randy McNally
- Speaker Pro Tempore: Ferrell Haile
- Deputy Speaker: Janice Bowling
|Majority Party (R)||Leadership Position||Minority Party (D)|
|Jack Johnson||Leader||Jeff Yarbro|
|Ken Yager||Caucus Chairperson||Raumesh Akbari|
|Floor Leader||Brenda Gilmore|
The Tennessee State Senate has 12 committees in total: 9 standing Committees and 3 Select Committees. During the 111th General Assembly, they are:
|Commerce and Labor||Paul Bailey (R)|
|Education||Dolores Gresham (R)|
|Energy, Agriculture, and Natural Resources||Steve Southerland (R)|
|Finance, Ways, and Means||Bo Watson (R)|
|Government Operations||Kerry Roberts (R)|
|Health and Welfare||Rusty Crowe (R)|
|Judiciary||Mike Bell (R)|
|State and Local Government||Steve Dickerson (R)|
|Transportation and Safety||Becky Duncan Massey (R)|
|Calendar||Ed Jackson (R)|
|Ethics||Richard Briggs (R)|
|Rules||Bo Watson (R)|
Past composition of the SenateEdit
- "Anna Lee Keys Worley". National Women's History Museum. Retrieved August 5, 2018.
- "Newly-appointed Senator Rosalind Kurita accepts invitation to caucus with Republicans in Tennessee Senate". Tennessee Senate Republican Caucus. 2019-01-15. Retrieved 2019-01-17.
- "Tennessee's Senate Democrats elect Nashville's Jeff Yarbro as minority leader". The Tennessean. Retrieved 2019-01-30.
- "Legislative Senate Committees - Tennessee General Assembly". www.capitol.tn.gov. Retrieved 2019-01-15.