Bill Lee Tithes For the Federal Refugee Resettlement Program With Taxpayer Money

Why do millionaires like Bill Lee feel so free to use state tax dollars to live out their personal religious beliefs?

Remember when Bill Lee was campaigning and trying to dazzle gullible voters with his “brilliant” idea for an Office of Faith-Based & Community Initiatives?

Once elected he launched this initiative and it may end up being the vehicle for Bill Lee to funnel more state dollars to pad the pocketbooks of federal refugee contractors and other groups that want to get into the lucrative refugee resettlement business.

In fact, Bill Lee told us as much while he was on the campaign trail:

“My wife has worked in a ministry that serves Kurdish refugees, I’ve been to Kurdistan and served with refugees from ISIS in refugee camps,” Lee replied. “I believe that the work of nonprofits is powerful and important, and that’s what this is about. And I am a Christian, so my experiences and my work with non-profits that are doing effective work has been Christian organizations, so that’s what I talk about, because I talk about my experience, and I will support works that are doing, meeting some of the greatest challenges in our community that I believe government shouldn’t meet, it’s not the role of government to do that. But it is the role of the nonprofit community and I would encourage that kind of work, for sure.”

But he might just use the government to provide the greenbacks – we’ll get to that in a minute.

So why is anyone surprised that when offered, he jumped at the chance to say “YES!” I want to put Tennessee back into the refugee resettlement program!!!

And because of the 50-100 mile placement rules from the four urban centers where the federal resettlement contractor offices are located, when he consented for Tennessee, he pretty much put every county in the state up for grabs.

Shortly after the Governor announced consenting to bring more refugees to Tennessee, a Bill Lee Facebook devotee put out hints about what is in the works:

Kurds which seem to be a Lee-Blackburn obsession, are overwhelmingly Muslim and have been in a long-standing battle with other Muslims over terrain. Let’s also remember that the PKK (the Kurdistan Workers’ Party), a U.S. designated terrorist group is part of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The SDF is a multi-ethnic group of secular forces in northern Syria led primarily by the YPG, a Kurdish militia group.

So exactly how does the Governor plan to “hold Churches and Christian organizations accountable for the refugees they resettle in Tennessee”?

It’s so simple even Governor Lee figured it out – do it the same way the federal government holds states accountable – by attaching conditions to money.

Lee can use his Office of Faith-based & Community Initiatives to offer state grants to the hard leftist federal resettlement contractors who just happen to also be faith-based non-profits. They’re paid by the feds to only provide 30 days of service during which, they get refugees a social security card, enroll kids in school and get anyone eligible for TennCare signed up.

Churches that want to get into the lucrative refugee industry by providing services after the federal resettlement contractors finish their 30 days, can also get in on the state money.

Money? What money?

Was a hint thrown out today by House Speaker Cameron Sexton during hisradio interview about the Governor’s consent on refugee resettlement?

Could the money be coming from the state’s accumulated TANF (cash welfare) reserve funds?

It was reported on November 5th, that the Governor originally supported holding onto the extremely large accumulated bundle of TANF money being held by the Tennessee Department of Human Services:

“However, Lee changed course on Monday by telling reporters he was open to using the surplus on a variety of options to continue helping Tennessee’s poor. His announcement was coupled with news that the state was planning on spending up to $70 million of the surplus on grant awards to nonprofits throughout the state starting in January.”

Maybe like the non-profits involved or soon to be involved with refugees? Would the Governor’s church qualify?

Tennessee has sued to challenge the federal refugee program because of the federal government shifting federal costs associated with the refugee program to the state government. This has been acknowledged in federal reports. And the cost transfer occurs whether or not the state consents to paying these added federal costs.

No worry now, because Governor Lee has now consented to paying the federal costs transferred to Tennessee on top of the state incurred costs for the refugee program and is possibly willing to add some of the TANF money to the effort.

Conservatives in Tennessee who put Bill Lee in office get a lump of coal for Christmas while the radical left TN Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) congratulates it’s lobbying effort on the consent push:

“We thank Governor Lee for his moral clarity and leadership in making his decision today…‘Refugee communities across Tennessee have played a powerful role in defending not only the resettlement program but the values and aspirations of this country’, said TIRRC Policy Officer Judith Clerjeune. ‘We will continue to work with refugee leaders and partner agencies to advocate for a robust and generous resettlement program.”’

During Bill Lee’s campaign his first major policy initiative was his “Roadmap for Rural Tennessee” which he highlighted by riding around on a tractor and talking about “his farming roots” and about how Tennessee is just one generation away from losing this way of life.

Not sure what happened to all that rural love, because what we have now, is the rural governor scrooging Tennessee’s rural counties in deference to the urban-based federal contractor resettlement agencies.

Merry Christmas!                  

3 thoughts on “Bill Lee Tithes For the Federal Refugee Resettlement Program With Taxpayer Money”

  1. Gov. Lee says that it’s the role of non-profits, not the role of government to meet some challenges (like refugee resettlement I assume).

    But the non-profits get our Federal tax dollars, and after a month when their job is done, the state government (our tax dollars which will come from where?) have to pick up the maintenance and care costs of the refugees! Meanwhile we have more unskilled labor in the state, just what the rural counties don’t need. Whatever is the governor thinking? And who is he thinking about?

  2. Gov Lee was elected to be a Governor not a religious missionary or pastor! Spend your own money sir! Why don’t you put these issues up for a referendum and vote! That would be fair and the true wishes of the citizens would be expressed. Certainly there are many more countries available to refugees that don’t require transatlantic travel, official documents, etc.. Our country is becoming one big fat dumping ground for people who won’t fight to change their own homeland.

  3. Gov. Lee appears to be disingenuous on his two major points regarding this misguided policy decision, i.e., supporting President Trump and adhering to his Christian beliefs with compassion for the refugee’s plight.

    In his remarks to the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly on 25 September 2018, President Trump had this to say in reference to refugees from Syria (and refugees in general):

    “As we see in Jordan, the most compassionate policy is to place refugees as close to their homes as possible to ease their eventual return to be part of the rebuilding process. This approach also stretches finite resources to help far more people, increasing the impact of every dollar spent.”

    So in his newly found “Welcome refugees!” policy (SQUEE!), Gov. Lee has not only been directly contrary to the President’s objectives, he has simultaneously betrayed his Christian beliefs by not adopting a policy that would do the most good for the people most in need.

    In other words, he has condemned countless thousands, if not millions, of innocent victims of war, corruption, tyranny, and natural disaster to continuing persecution, misery, exploitation, and even death, by adopting a policy that provides refuge to the privileged few here in Tennessee rather than the 5, 10, or even 100’s of others that would otherwise be provided desperately needed refuge closer to their native homeland.

    Consider this: Turkey alone house some odd 3.5 million refugees – that’s half the population of Tennessee – throw Jordan’s 670,000 refugees into the mix and then Lebanon’s 1.5 million refugees while you’re at it. You’re pretty close to the entire population of Tennessee at that point. The ONLY way that is possible is by having a refuge that is far, far less costly to provide. Not only that, but one where the refugees are most likely to LEAVE once the crisis is past. How many Kurds have left Nashville now that Syria is more stable? How many have left Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon? Oh, gee.

    And it’s not just the quantity, but the quality of the refuge provided. Yes, on the surface, an apartment in Nashville appears infinitely preferable to a tent camp in Jordan. No question where I would rather be.

    But remember, too, that that family has just now been completely dissociated from its lifestyle, its ethnicity, its culture, its social mores and cultural values, and its familial and community support. Instead, it has now been thrust into an alien environment where the food is unpalatable, the language is unknown, it is removed from its extended family and community and, instead, now faces the enmity and resentment of the general native populace. It has laws that boggle the mind. Those family’s children now must struggle with attending a school where they don’t even speak the language and, as a result, they incur grave, irreversible damage to their self-esteem, and simultaneously teachers have to slew to the lowest common denominator and thereby neglect the education of its native children.

    So let’s flip the equation here: let’s say the USA suffers a complete breakdown in social order – would you rather take refuge in a tent camp in Toronto or an apartment in Amman, Ankara, or Beirut? Is it more likely that you will be able to return to the USA from Toronto or from Amman, Ankara, or Beirut? If your family left back in the USA had an emergency, would you be able to do more for them in Toronto or Amman, Ankara, or Beirut? You get my point, the list is long.

    Refugees are far better served by being provided refuge in an environment, location, and culture closest to that of their own.

    So cui bono, who benefits? One of the finest and most forthright organizations exposing the refugee fraudsters is Refugee Resettlement Watch (RRW), based in western Maryland:


    And for an in-depth expose of how TIRRC and other such refugee fraudster agencies were explicitly delighted with Governor Lee’s decision, here’s the following:

    No, Governor, your defense of the decision is transparently weak and even disingenuous. Not all of us out here sit around on our butts eating Cheetos, watching teevee, and toss out half-assed opinions in the finest tradition of the Dunning-Kruger effect; some of us do the research and apply critical thinking skills. In this instance, you’ve been had. You betrayed not only the trust of your supporters, but your very Christian beliefs; you’ve been duped.

    Absent your full and immediate reversal of this misguided decision, one has to give serious consideration to discover ways to remove you from office, and/or other ways to nullify your decision through the legislative process.

    I supported your campaign on the basis of the three key points of your platform: a good job, a good education for our kids, and a safe neighborhood to live in, for all Tennesseans. So if everything else I’ve said here doesn’t register, remember that your decision represents a direct slap in the face on all three of those key points. That is to say, a full and complete betrayal.

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