The details sound straight out of a soap opera.
A doctor and his younger nurse fall in love. They continue their torrid affair even after his ex-wife tips off the nurse’s husband, a local politician, to the salacious goings-on. As the divorce moves forward, discovery turns up that the nurse is not just the doctor’s employee and his lover, but his patient, with a predilection for pain pills. And, oh, she’s his second cousin, too.
This is the town of Hohenwald (pop. 3,703) in Lewis County, where bitter divorce proceedings have brought to light possibly unethical behavior by Dr. Joey Hensley, a Republican state senator who also happens to be a family physician — and one who has run for office since 2002 on a platform of conservative Christian values.
He also happens to have been married four times because values.
Bills he has sponsored include
“Don’t Say Gay” bill, which would have banned public school teachers from even mentioning that homosexuality exists. During one hearing that year, Hensley commented, “I don’t think Modern Family is appropriate for children to watch” — because it features a married gay couple raising children. This session, Hensley is sponsoring a bill from the Tennessee Family Action Council that would make children created using donor sperm illegitimate — an attempt to make it harder for gay and lesbian parents to establish paternity. He is also a sponsor of the so-called “Milo Bill,” aimed at liberal practices on college campuses.
Fortunately for Sen. Hensley, being caught with one’s pants down isn’t an automatic career killer for a Republican. His voters will forgive him and feel virtuous for doing so. And when he continues his homophobic harassment campaign they’ll feel virtuous for contributing to that, as well.