Hawkins Not So “Keen” on JOBS Bill

Last week, 9th District Congressional Candidate Lee Hawkins went on the new Mike Evans Show (Nike Air is a sponsor I’m guessing from Mike’s fashionable footwear) – and criticized the popular 2010 JOBS Act, sponsored by fellow 9th District Congressional Candidate Tom Graves. So you don’t have to sit through the 13 minute Evans/Hawkins interview, here is what Hawkins said about the proposed legislation (at 10:42 in the video)…

“We’ve got a jobs bill that’s on the house side right now.  Governor didn’t sign it last year. I don’t know whether he’s going to sign it this time.  Really depends on the mechanism of the bill. You know we can’t go negative with that type of situation.  Can’t give job credits, more credits than employers are paying in their income tax.  Also on a federal level you know the Obama Administration has a similar approach to jobs.”

Hawkins, before joining the race with Graves, I might add, had a very different message back in 2009 when talking about the JOBS Act…

Hawkins also praised the Act as the most pro-business legislation the General Assembly has ever considered and believes its focus on protecting the small business will be the key to bringing Georgia through the current recession.

While Hawkins may think he is scoring political points by criticizing Graves’ pro-jobs legislation, he is going up against some well respected conservative organizations who have all publicly expressed their support for the bill – National Federation of Independent Business, Americans for Tax Reform, Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks.

In recent days the legislation seems to have stalled in the House Rules Committee, despite overwhelming support and unanimous passage by the Small Business Development and Jobs Creation Committee Chaired by John Lunsford. Some have suggested that House Majority Leader Jerry Keen, who happens to be a host for a fundraiser for Lee Hawkins in Atlanta on Monday, is holding up the bill in committee.

Others reject that criticism, stating that concerns over immediate revenue impact to tax collection may temporarily outweigh future benefits of the JOBS bill.

With Hawkins distancing himself from the Tea Parties and now criticizing the JOBS Bill, maybe that’s why Bobby Reese (Gwinnett County, website still under construction) sees a better shot of making a run-off over in the 9th instead the open Congressional seat in the 7th, where he actually lives.

35 comments

  1. appachtrail70 says:

    Lee Hawkins is everything that is wrong with Georgia politics. He, Jerry Keen, and John Oxendine would sell their souls for more power.

  2. Refugee says:

    I agree about Keen. He’s on a local radio station here in the St. Simons area and can talk for a half hour and whens he’s finally finished you have no idea what he’s said. A true politician.

  3. debbie0040 says:

    Email just sent out by Georgia FreedomWorks. Keen needs to stop playing politics with this important bill..

    Rep. Jerry Keen Preventing A Vote On The JOBS Bill

    Jobs Opportunity and Success Act of 2010 HB 1023

    Rep. Tom Graves announced the JOBS Act on January 28, 2010. He was joined at the press conference by Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, Senate President Pro-Temp Tommie Williams, Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers and many other state senators and representatives

    On February 18, 2010, the Small Business and Job Creation subcommittee unanimously passed the JOBS Act out of committee, earning support from both Republicans and Democrats

    When the JOBS Act was favorably reported out of the committee, it then was sent to the Rule Committee to be placed on the calendar for consideration by the full House of Representatives.

    Last week without warning, the JOBS Act became stuck in the Rules Committee by House Majority Leader Jerry Keen.

    Call Rep. Jerry Keen and tell him to let the JOBS Act out of the rules committee and let the full House of Representatives vote on it. Ask him why he is holding up a vote on the JOBS Act.

    (404) 656-5052

  4. Jane says:

    Sounds like targeted tax cut for the friends of those who wrote the bill. Across the board tax cuts yes, but targeted tax cut are actual subsidies of those who get the cut by those who do not.

  5. debbie0040 says:

    Not true, Jane. Am I correct in assuming that Hawkins supporters are going to play politics with this important bill? I sure hope I am wrong in that assumption.

    Jane, you sound more like the people in charge in D.C.

    http://www.freedomworks.org/blog/bpeck/promoting-the-jobs-opportunity-and-business-succes

    http://www.nfib.com/nfib-in-my-state/nfib-in-my-state-content/cmsid/50616/

    ATLANTA, Jan. 28, 2008 — David Raynor, state director of the National Federation of Independent Business, said the Jobs, Opportunity and Business Success (JOBS) Act of 2010 would help Georgia’s small businesses lead the state out of the recession.

    “Small business is the lifeblood of Georgia’s economy, and this is sound legislation that could help reduce Georgia’s high unemployment rate and help small businesses weather the recession,” Raynor said.

    “We’re grateful to Rep. Tom Graves for re-introducing his legislation this session,” Raynor said. “The JOBS Act had tremendous support in the General Assembly, and I hope Gov. Sonny Perdue will allow it to become law. Yes, this would be a financial investment, but it would pay dividends for years to come.

    “Small business accounts for 98 percent of the state’s employers and employs 46 percent of its private-sector workforce,” he said. “When you help small business, you help everyone,” Raynor said.

  6. PaulRevere says:

    I don’t live in the 9th, but I am disappointed Keen is playing politics with this good bill. That seems to be pretty typical of the way things work in Atlanta. Blindly endorsing their friends (who may or may not be qualified) is bad enough. Stalling good legislation is ridiculous.

    • PaulRevere says:

      Let me clarify before I get attacked:

      post should have read “Who may or may not be the best candidate” I’m not questioning Hawkins qualifications.

      • HowardRoark says:

        Those serving in our esteemed Senate believe that running for higher office requires just one qualification:

        Serving in our esteemed Senate.

  7. debbie0040 says:

    I am very disappointed in the spin I am hearing being put on this bill by supporters of Sen Hawkins.

    From an email I received, ” I did ask Jerry why, and he explained that it was the entire Rules Committee, not just one person on the committee, and of course, I knew that. He also explained that this bill would cost the state millions and millions of dollars in the next few years.”

    Sounds like the same thing liberals say when conservatives talk about tax cuts. People are sick of the mentality they hear from the libs in D.C. Guess this bill will show who are real conservatives and those that are RINOS that need to have someone run against them….This bill will show those that believe in Reagan economic principles and those that don’t..

  8. debbie0040 says:

    I urge Sen. Hawkins to step forward and put politics aside and urge passage of this jobs creation bill.. I have faith he will do that..

  9. SVT says:

    Perdue was wise to veto a similar bill last session. The fiscal note for the bill indicates that the legislation would cause an $18 million drop in State General Fund revenues in FY 2011, growing to a $500 million revenue loss in FY 2013, depending upon the buildup of revenue reserve funds. Legislators need to think critically about the impact of this bill…and how many jobs will actually be LOST because of this bill.

  10. Game Fan says:

    The good:
    Republicans are actually starting to realize that large corporate entities (with tax breaks) aren’t the only ones who “provide jobs”.

    The Bad:
    The entire concept of a “jobs bill”.

  11. debbie0040 says:

    Game Fan, this bill would benefit small business, so you guys please stop spouting the same talking points we hear from the liberals every time a tax cut is mentioned. As I said, we will soon find out who are the true Reagan conservatives and who are the RINOs. The masks are about to come off…

    ATLANTA, Jan. 28, 2008 — David Raynor, state director of the National Federation of Independent Business, said the Jobs, Opportunity and Business Success (JOBS) Act of 2010 would help Georgia’s small businesses lead the state out of the recession.

    “Small business is the lifeblood of Georgia’s economy, and this is sound legislation that could help reduce Georgia’s high unemployment rate and help small businesses weather the recession,” Raynor said.

    “We’re grateful to Rep. Tom Graves for re-introducing his legislation this session,” Raynor said. “The JOBS Act had tremendous support in the General Assembly, and I hope Gov. Sonny Perdue will allow it to become law. Yes, this would be a financial investment, but it would pay dividends for years to come.

    “Small business accounts for 98 percent of the state’s employers and employs 46 percent of its private-sector workforce,” he said. “When you help small business, you help everyone,” Raynor said

  12. Joshua Morris says:

    Keep in mind that this bill has a $30million cost to the state, while revenues are already down sharply.

    The bill would repeal the net worth tax on businesses. I typically am for lowering taxes on business, but I don’t think this particular tax is the one to drop at this time. From a supply-side point of view, I don’t see how revenue will increase to offset that in this economy. Furthermore, we can add all the incentives we want to hiring people, but if businesses don’t have a need to make more widgets, they’re not going to hire more people. Incentives don’t cause businesses to hire people they don’t need. We’ve got to focus on lowering taxes in a way that will get people buying again. Once people begin to buy, businesses will have incentive to hire. Then, tax incentives for hiring will help them.

  13. steelfist says:

    So how much does this cost the state?

    The JOBS Act is revenue positive to the state in the first two fiscal years by generating new wages of $736 million and taxable sales of $265 million, for a total economic impact of more than $1 billion.

    • Joshua Morris says:

      You and SVT need to get together. No fiscal note can guarantee how many jobs will be created due to tax incentives, especially when people don’t have money to buy things. As I said before, we had better find ways for people who are working to keep more of their hard-earned money, so that they can make purchases and create a need for more products. Without a need for increased production, tax incentives won’t cause employers to hire.

          • steelfist says:

            If Lee supports a tax that punishes success, then I am sure Tom would love to have that debate. It wouldn’t be surprising with Lee’s latest anti-free market policy position.

            RedState: Lee Hawkins (R-GA) Opposes Private Sector Job Creation Legislation

    • macho says:

      Or maybe a better way of putting it. If all income tax was cut to zero for individuals and the corporate tax was raised to 75%, what do you think would happen? They would raise the price of their products and/or move overseas.

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