House speaker urges civility in GOP as gas tax vote nears - WSMV News 4

House speaker urges civility in GOP as gas tax vote nears

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Speaker Beth Harwell is calling for civility between her Republican colleagues as the Tennessee House prepares for a contentious vote on Gov. Bill Haslam's transportation funding proposal on Wednesday.

Harwell urged Republican members to "be kind to one another" even if they disagree on the substance of the bill that would raise the state's gas tax for the first time since 1989.

Supporters of the bill note that it would make deeper cuts in areas like the sales tax on groceries than it would raise at the pump, but opponents question that math and have vowed to vote against any tax increase.

Republican Rep. Jerry Sexton of Bean Station has called the bill a "farce" and berated GOP supporters in committees, on the floor and in a press conference.

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