Fowler should win one more for the babiesTerry Frank has a brief post about the fact that State Senator David Fowler is not seeking re-election. I've known about this for a day or two now, and The Tennessean did a report on it. I have to say that I find the notion of Senator Fowler choosing to retire disheartening because the pro-life movement in Tennessee really needs Senator Fowler right now.
As those of you inside the State (and who closely follow politics) are aware, Senator Fowler was the Senator who was the primary force behind moving the proposed amendment to the Tennessee Constitution that would allow the General Assembly to decide the question of abortion here, and which I wrote about last week.
For those who read regularly who are not from Tennessee, perhaps I should explain our amendment prosess to you. For the Tennessee Constitution to be amended, both the House and the Senate must agree by majority vote in one session, and it can pass by simple majority in both Houses. Then the amendment comes up for a vote in the next session of the General Assembly, and the second time, it must pass by a two-thirds vote. Either year, the Governor may veto, but the General Assembly can override that veto.
If the amendment then passes through all of those loopholes, it goes to the people for a vote at the next General Election where a Governor is chosen that follows its passage. Since this year is an election year, the earliest the abortion amendment would see a free vote would be 2010.
Since Senator Fowler is the party who is primarily responsible for bringing this proposal into being, I would at least like to see him stay on one more term to help shepherd the amendment he brought into being to the next step in the constitutional process. It is important for Tennessee and Tennesseans, but also to the innocent unborn to whom Senator Fowler is trying to give a voice.