NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) – On Wednesday, Speaker of the Tennessee House Cameron Sexton spoke with WJHL’s Josh Smith on recent matters including COVID-19 and a recent incident with a Tennessee lawmaker at a sporting event.

Sexton first spoke on school systems continuing to struggle with student and teacher absences due to COVID.

Last year, lawmakers in Tennessee banned schools from enacting mask mandates and also made it so districts did not have the option for remote learning.

Sexton says that he believes that it was the right course of action.

“You can’t just look at the number of people who have tested positive. This variant appears to be very mild. People will use the data to back up whatever scientific statement they want to make,” said Sexton. “I really think that schools should be open and if the parents want their children to wear masks in schools they should determine it and that’s the direction we need to go as a state.”

Sexton also spoke on the recent incident where a Tennessee lawmaker attempted to pull down the pants of a referee at his son’s basketball game, saying that it is time to “move on.”