Insure TN is dead

It’s a strange feeling to a) know something’s about to happen, but b) not know when it’s going to happen.

Wednesday felt like we were waiting for this ax to drop.

We knew it was a critical day for Insure Tennessee. We knew the probable outcome. But we really didn’t know when the two would merge AKA when the vote would happen.

Some appropriate sayings include:

  • Hurry up and wait
  • Not a matter of if, but when

Throughout the day, I tried searching for signs – a moment that would reveal Insure Tennessee’s fate. An updated vote count from Chairman McManus? No. A wild motion on the House floor? No.

And then, we caught Speaker Harwell just as the House had gone into recess. Senate Health was about to reconvene.

Do you have the support? one reporter asked.

A beat. Then, right before she turned away: “I don’t think we have the support.”

That’s when I knew. That’s when we all knew, I think.

The death came less than an hour later – it materialized so quickly.  Insure TN reared its head one last time – in the form of a rousing speech made by sponsor Sen. Doug Overbey (R-Maryville). He knew the stakes. He spoke of fear and hesitation and questions and duty.

“I ask this committee not to be the one to stop this process,” Overbey said. “If you vote no, that stops it.”

7 nays, 4 yays.

insure tn

An hour later, House and Senate leadership walked into the Governor’s office.

The tones were hushed and muddled, but I caught four words coming from Haslam.

“Thanks…. I appreciate it.”

I’ll let you read the nuts and bolts here: Insure Tennessee killed in committee hearing.


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