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Lobbyist Not Backing Down from Gay Controversy

David Fowler is President of the Family Action Council of Tennessee.


A lobbyist for the conservative Family Action Council of Tennessee (FACT) is standing his ground following revelations that he helped orchestrate the passage of a new state law that nullified Nashville’s anti-gay bias regulations.

A string of emails between FACT's David Fowler and state legislators came to light as part of a lawsuit challenging Tennessee’s new Equal Access to Intrastate Commerce Act, signed into law in May.

The law prohibits local governments from creating anti-discrimination regulations that are stricter than those of the state. The law voided a Nashville ordinance barring companies that discriminate against gays and lesbians from doing business with the city.

In a conversation with WMOT News Thursday, Fowler said that in spite of the negative attention his emails have gotten, he wouldn’t do anything differently now.

"What the ACLU is making a fuss about is the exact same thing their lobbyist does every day on the (capital) hill. So the whole purpose of this lawsuit ...is to try to intimidate and harass and keep our organization from moving forward."

Although he acknowledges that his organization’s mission is to preserve the traditional family for what he calls “the common good,” Fowler still insists that keeping local municipalities from writing their own bias laws is in Tennessee’s best interest.