Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Qualifying Day 2 Recap

There is nothing new to report in Baldwin County elections from Tuesday, but read Thursday's Union-Recorder to find out which Baldwin County pol is jumping into one of the two local races for the General Assembly.
U.S. Senate candidate R.J. Hadley stopped by 165 Garrett Way yesterday to tell us about his campaign. We'll have a recap of that conversation later this week.
And in somewhat election related news: State Sen. Johnny Grant, R-Milledgeville, and state Rep. Rusty Kidd, I-Milledgeville, announced that they've negotiated a $3.2 million allocation to reopen the Powell Building at Central State Hospital.
The allocation was couched in the terms of saving the state's only designated emergency receiving facility. The money has already passed the state Senate and has to make it into the conference committee budget to go to the governor's desk.
Despite all its implications, One Capital Removed welcomes the return of the strong man Baldwin County legislator.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Joining the 1 Percenters

Upstart goobernatorial candidate Ray Boyd has announced his intention to run for the state's top administrative position as an independent.
Boyd raised eyebrows last Monday with his inability to fall in line and sign an oath of loyalty to the Republican Party. And this week he's cutting ties and shoving off to run independent.
It sounds like Travis Fain at Lucid Idiocy feels Boyd is going to have a hard time getting the signatures of the 1 percent of total state electors in order to get on the ballot as an independent.

2010 Qualifying Day 1

A 68-year-old Republican Special Investigator from Savannah is the first new name in the Congressional race for the 12th.
Mike Horner's website says he's a former U.S. Air Force special investigator who currently conducts background investigations for the FBI and the Defense Intelligence Agency.
Horner saysid the March on Washington was a wake up call to the Sleeping Giant that is the American public and inspired him to run for public office.

Getting back into the Swing of Things

Update: Gold Dome Live will be holding down the "pair of conference rooms on the second floor" of the present Capitol for the Atlanta paper.
In news of local interest: Republican Ray McKinney and Democrat Regina Thomas have been the first to throw their hats in the ring again to unseat incumbent Dem John Barrow in the 12th District race for Congress.
State Senator Johnny Grant, R-Milledgeville, is the first local incumbent to sign in for the General Assembly--though it is reported that state Representative Rusty Kidd, I-Milledgeville, will run again as an independent, requiring him to file a petition with 5 percent of the 141st District's registered voters, so he will probably not get posted on this link immediately.

One Capital Removed has taken a lot of time off recently to revive and start several new and old part-time projects. Milledgeville's only state politics blog also has been experimenting with emerging Internet technology through its new twitter feed.
Check 1 Capital Removed out on Twitter for more up-to-date information about state matters that might affect the State's Antebellum Capital. I'm going to continue blogging here when issues require more analysis.
But to the point of this post, statewide election season starts today! Candidates for statewide offices from U.S. Senate to Governor to state House of Representatives will qualify at the state Capitol in Atlanta throughout this week.
Check here to learn who is qualifying at the Capitol.
One Capital Removed is still out of the office today (Monday), so any qualifying news will post here before it ends up on your lawn in The Union-Recorder.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Ox Refuses to Implement First Phase of Health Care Reform

From the desk of Insurance Commissioner (and Goobernatorial candidate) John Oxendine:


Atlanta – Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine announced today that he will not participate in the first phase of recently enacted federal health care legislation which calls for the implementation of a temporary high risk insurance pool in Georgia. In doing so, Oxendine cited that the program could potentially cause taxpayers severe financial hardship.

"I have no confidence in any federal assertion that this so-called temporary program will not burden the taxpayers of Georgia," Oxendine said. "I am concerned that the high risk insurance program will ultimately become the financial responsibility of Georgians at a time when our state is furloughing teachers, laying off employees, and cutting public safety and education funding."

On April 2, Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius sent a letter to Oxendine asking him to express his interest in participating in the temporary high risk insurance program established by the new health insurance reform law. Oxendine responded that he cannot commit the state to implement this program which is part of a bill he believes the Supreme Court will hold to be unconstitutional, lead to the further expansion of the federal government, and undermine the financial security of our nation.

Sebelius gave Oxendine an April 30 deadline to indicate his intent to participate.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Hold Still Little Catfish

AJC's Jay Bookman filed this recent update on the House Speaker's ethics reform bill.
It's a good thing Mr. Bookman found a way to put this back in front of our noses, because I, like the majority of Georgians, may have stopped caring about the General Assembly after reading that corporations and other interests are no longer employing prostitutes in the hallways of the Capitol.
The "Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Act of 2010" also could have eluded Georgians as it came to be in the form of a Senate Bill that hit the House floor on March 17, 2009.
If it's Sunday morning and you have an hour or so like I did today, you might take the time to learn how this simple bill to increase filing fees and late fines for disclosure reports turned into this No Ethics Reform Package in a little over a year.
Yeah, yeah, we get the picture:
Even Congress now bans the giving of gifts to its members by lobbyists, but in Georgia, legislators are apparently more interested in maintaining the flow of expensive trips, meals, golf excursions and sporting events than in improving their reputation for ethical behavior.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Campaign Contribution Reports are Out

You can look to see who's winning over contributor's hearts and wallets here.

Barrow Not Leaving the Party of his Predecessors

Thankfully, AJC's Political Insider laid to rest the rumor that Congressman John Barrow would forsake the Democratic party and become a Republican.
Hearing this, I can only wonder what Democratic maven Maxine Goldstein would think. On more than one occasion, Goldstein has told me about how she's known Barrow since he was a young child attending statewide Democratic meetings with his mother, Phyllis Barrow.
I don't think she would ever think Barrow could become a Republican, but game on with the continuing punishment of dissenting ideas!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Not to Harp on it, but a Pledge is a Promise

It seems that with his vote in favor of House Bill 307, state Senator Johnny Grant, R-Milledgeville, is shirking his pledge to "oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes."
Now, we can get into an argument over the semantics of what passed the state Senate yesterday--was it a tax increase, a fee, revenue enhancement or the state's match on federal funds--but I'd rather take the stance that it was probably a bad idea to lock one's self into any kind of 'just say no to new taxes' promise during a session (the two-year sense of the word) in which the legislature is tasked with getting the state out of this dire of a budget catastrophe.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Maybe Baker does stand a chance against the Barnes Machine

Ratcheting up the partisan fervor today, I just received an e-mail from the state House Communications Office informing me that state Rep. Billy Mitchell, D-Stone Mountain, introduced a resolution recognizing Attorney General Thurbert Baker for independence and courage.
"I applaud the Attorney General for his independence," said
Representative Mitchell. "Thurbert Baker has consistently stood up for his beliefs. He deserves great recognition."
Baker has been riding a wave of national media attention appearing on "Hardball with Chris Matthews" and "The Rachel Maddow Show" yesterday to talk about this impeachment thing.
And to add to it, state Rep. Mark Hatfield, R-Waycross, appeared on Fox News yesterday to talk about his end of getting the Baker message to the people.
As I am a firm believer that state politics aren't important to people because they know nothing about them, I think this national exposure may give Georgia's Attorney General a positive bounce in the polls, and I'm sure Georgia Democrats who positively hate the Republican majority are absolutely ready to get behind the man that's standing up to right side of the aisle.
Either way you look at it, this is a whole lot better than some crappy Web animation of a bull hitting a rat out of the Ted (which is where I'll be this Monday for the Home Opener!).