“Material Support to Designated Entities Act of 2011 Explanation"

*SB 1028 by *Ketron , Tracy, Beavers, Gresham
HB 1353 by *Matheny , Todd, Womick, Dean, Shipley, Dennis, Faison, Rich, Coley, Lundberg, White, Gotto, Holt
Homeland Security - As introduced, enacts the "Material Support to Designated Entities Act of 2011."

Purpose of this bill:
· to criminalize the knowing provision of “material support” to “designated Sharia organizations”
· to provide a powerful counterterrorism tool to state and local law enforcement enabling them to act decisively BEFORE against acts of terrorism are committed

How the bill works:
· defines a “sharia organization” as two or more people who conspire to act in support of Sharia jihad or furthering the imposition of Sharia through violence
· Attorney General has the authority to “designate” a “sharia organization” drawing a “ring of fire” around it
· once designated, no material support or resources as defined in the bill, may be provided to the designated Sharia organization
· civil and/or criminal penalties can be levied against anyone providing material support or resources to a designated organization

Important information about this bill:
· specifically drafted and vetted for Tennessee
· closely modeled after the federal anti-terrorism designation and material support statutes
· the federal statutes have been upheld as constitutional facially and as applied, by the U.S. Supreme Court and the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals
· the courts held that what would otherwise have been protected political speech constituted material support when spoken in support of and to assist designated terrorist entities, and as such, no 1st Amendment rights of free speech or association were violated
· extensive Legislative Findings and explicit Legislative Intent support the “compelling state interest” to protect Tennesseans from jihad terrorism and that the bill is a focused, targeted and the least intrusive method to meet the compelling state interest
· the Legislative Findings ensure that the sole target is the legal-political doctrine and system of Sharia and not Islam as protected religious worship

Why we need this bill in Tennessee:
· the incidence of homegrown terrorism is rising, e.g. Carlos Bledsoe
· open source reporting shows between 2001-2008 one to two terror attempts a year. From 2009- January 2011, one to two cases uncovered nationally per month
· the 2002 “TN Terrorism Prevention Act” only addresses after the fact events and relies solely on sanctions to achieve prevention