Tennessee Republicans are so hellbent on stripping LGBTQ couples of their right to marry, that they’re willing to sacrifice $9.4 billion in federal funding, which would decimate TennCare and safety-net benefits for over 2 million Tennesseans.
Because the Natural Marriage Defense Act (House Bill 1369 and Senate Bill 1282) would deny spousal healthcare benefits to same-sex couples, Tennessee would be in violation of federal law and would have to forfeit its $7.4 billion in federal funding for TennCare. This proposal comes after Republican leadership has already cost Tennessee $7 billion in federal funds by refusing to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.
The Tennessee Department of Human Services says it would lose $2 billion in federal funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, programs used by over 1 million Tennessee families.
Tennessee Democrats are combat these efforts both inside the State House and on the campaign trial.
TREVON SYLVESTER is the communications director for the Tennessee Democratic Party. For more information, visit tndp.org.