Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The View From Here

Day one of the new legislative session is over and all of the things we’ve been presuming have come to pass—and a few other things.

“Personal integrity is the very touchstone of public responsibility.”

The Glenn Richardson era is over. Jim Galloway of AJC’s Political Insider told us that Speaker Temporary Mark Burkhalter brought in a Catholic archbishop in to lay the rules of engagement. You can see that rule quoted above.
Burkhalter also did other things. He welcomed all new members of the House, including 141st District Representative Rusty Kidd, and he, again, paid tribute to outgoing Speaker Glenn Richardson, who was not there to hand deliver his resignation letter to Gov. Sonny Perdue.
Again from Political Insider:
“He’s a great man, and he’s getting better,” Burkhalter said. “He wishes he could be here today, but doesn’t think that was the best thing to do.”

History in the Making

The House had two real—somewhat—leadership elections yesterday.
The House elected Jan Jones, R-Alpharetta, Speaker Pro Tem. The former House Majority Whip, Jones is the first woman to hold the Lower Chamber’s number two position.
And the history making didn’t stop till the top yesterday either.
House Republicans, and some Democrats, voted in David Ralston as the new Speaker.
House Democrats decided to resume their role of opposition party yesterday by putting forth the same opposition candidate for Speaker for the same reasons they should have run an opposition candidate last year.
House Minority Leader, and goobernatorial candidate, Dubose Porter, D-Dublin, nominated House Democratic Caucus Leader Calvin Smyre, D-Columbus, saying that Smyre has connections to the White House and will end the hawks system.
I noticed some backlash to Porter’s comments that Smyre would end the hawks system, which allows the Speaker to stack committee meetings with representatives that will ensure votes reflect the Speaker’s wishes on a bill.
Pundits reminded everyone that David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, ran for the Republican nomination for the Speaker’s gavel saying he would end the hawk system as well. But I didn’t see any reports indicating that Ralston reaffirmed those promises in his acceptance speech.
Although Ralston did adhere to Ronald Regan’s 11th Commandment, “Thou shall not speak ill of any fellow Republican,” he didn’t go farther, as Burkhalter is quoted as doing above.

One Last Ride?

AJC’s Political Insider, which I guess wins my award for most information on day one, also reported hearing murmurs that Gov. Sonny Perdue will once again try to use his powers to move the legislature forward on transportation funding.
Now I want to think I remember some pictures of Perdue, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle and now defunct House Speaker Glenn Richardson huddling up on some transportation plan last year. If that is true, I might also be able to trust my memory to think that Richardson was the one who broke rank late in the session, effectively scuttling any possibilities last year.

So there you have it. I culled this information from AJC's Political Insider, AJC's Gold Dome Live, Georgia Legislative Watch, Peach Pundit and Lucid Idiocy.
So now you know where I go.

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