To Republicans in the General Assembly: “What Have You Done for Me Lately?”

The 11th Commandment, as stated by former President Reagan, says that “thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican”. I believe that should be modified when members of your party take up time for the citizens’ business to argue, bicker, and bemoan their fellow Republicans (seems to me like they are the ones breaking the 11th commandment).

In November 2010, the Georgia Republican Party was elated by the sweep that we had worked for and earned. It’s April 2011 and the 1st session of the General Assembly is winding down. Now, what has the legislature done for me this year. What can I say to my county Republican party, tea party folks, and other conservatives on why we should continue to stay in power? Zero-based budgeting comes to mind, but that’s something that passed last year easily only to be aborted by our previous governor. Sunday sales may or may not pass the House this session. Tax reform is all over the place. HOPE, although requiring higher performance, seems to be viable for a few more years.

The 2012 election is well over a year away, and I suspect Obama will cause many independents to vote Republican. However, I’d like to have some outstanding work of policy to come from the Gold Dome so we can say “this is why you should continue to send Republicans to get things done.” Right now, it seems to me like the Republicans, mainly in the Senate, are too busy yelling at each other trying to make each other look like idiots so that they can become Georgia’s 14th congressman.

Here’s some food for thought: with the recent performance of our state’s legislature, why should we send anyone (except for maybe a handful of rational ones) from either chamber to Washington? If there’s a legislator reading this and thinking about running for Congress, ask yourself “what legislative accomplishments have I made within the past couple of years?” If you *really* want to be elected, it shouldn’t just be “feel-good”, red meat issues, but rather something of substance (think of Congressman Tom Graves’ JOBS Act or the work to improve ethics in the legislature by Congressman Austin Scott as an example).

One of the things I have stressed to my county party is that we need to hold our elected officials more accountable. We loan them our power in our cities, county seats, Atlanta, and Washington, DC, and we must ensure that they are using it properly. If they are, great! Kudos! We may send you back to continue working for us. If they aren’t, then perhaps we need to reconsider on whether or not we should keep you in office.

The 2010 session wasn’t great, but this session seems to be much worse. Yes, this is criticism, but hopefully Republicans in the legislature (especially the leadership) will see this as an early warning and make necessary course corrections. We have redistricting in the summer and then the General Assembly will meet for its 2nd session in January 2012. We still have time to work towards improving Georgia (e.g. transportation, making Georgia attractive towards business, etc.).

Thought people were mad in 2010? It might be worse in 2012. I hope our representatives have a really good answer for our citizens when they start asking “what have you done for me lately?” for next year’s election.  Georgians don’t want political infighting or backstabbing.  We want results.

You have been warned.

33 comments

  1. Lea Thrace says:

    I agree with everything you have said sir!

    I do take issue with one part. Though I definitely do not agree with a lot of his policies, President Obama is still the rightful president of these United States. As such, he should be afforded the respect given to someone of that station.

    Please refer to him as President Obama and not just Obama. It’s disrespectful, in my opinion, to the office of the President as well as the holder of said office.

    End of rant 😀

    • Ridgerunner says:

      We should give respect to the office of the President of the United States, something which so many Democrats refused to do for President Bush. For me, it has become harder and harder to give respect, considering the way the President has , in my opinion, shown himself to be the weakest leader in the history of this nation, ignored and trampled the Constitution, insulted us, as Americans, by apologizing for this country when none was necessary, shoved unwanted legislation down our throats, insulted and alienated our allies, involved us in an unnecessary 3rd military front which, according to Gen. Gates, is not vital to our national interest, because (again, in my opinion) he is at the beck and call of the UN which is extremely hypocritical, considering he was one of George Bush’s biggest critics for going after a dictator, is trying to deceive the American public by pretending that the US is no longer “leading” in that war because it was “handed off” to NATO. (Yes friends, the US is still controlling this, because the boss of the Canadian General who’s taken charge of the “Kinetic Military Action” in Libya, is a US Admiral, and his boss is the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, who has always been an American, and guess who pays most of the bills). Of course, our President is known to lie about other things too (like how he is actively pursuing the development of oil resources in this country, when the fact is he has done all he can do, to try to halt as much oil production as possible). There are other things as well, which make me realize that I must give him respect, because he has done nothing to earn my respect.

      • KD_fiscal conservative says:

        Ridge,

        Ironically, you start off talking about how the Dem’s unfairly bashed Pres. Bush, but then you go into an angry rant where you make the EXACT same arguments the libs made(lair, unconstitutional, unnecessary war…) but instead target our current Pres. Is it ok when you do it, but unfair when it comes from a Dems, or do did George Bush also “do nothing to earn your respect.” And I really hope your not thinking …”but we’re really RIGHT, they were just making up stuff….”

        • Ridgerunner says:

          KD,

          The real irony is that the left often accuses the right of doing the very things they are guilty of. The fact of the matter here is that I stated that this was all my opinion, and pointed out what I perceived to be the hypocrisy of the left. I do not apologize for that.

          Why should it bother you that I might think that “we’re really RIGHT”, anyway? If we never thought “we’re really right”, there would be no need for more than one party, now would there? Additionally, I was simply exercising my right to free speech; and may I remind you that I am capable of making my own observations, and forming my own opinions, whether you agree or not.

          I’m sorry that you decided to take this to a personal level, and of course you are also entitled to your opinion, but remember, yours is no more valuable than anyone else’s.

              • KD_fiscal conservative says:

                Ridge,
                “Agreed”

                I don’t know if you do. Your response to “left wing hypocrisy” is right wing hypocrisy, and that the “left is horrible because…” but every one of those reasons could be easily also be applied to to our past President/Admin as well as our current, and if you can’t see that, I truly am sorry.

                The unfortunate truth is if people put themselves behind a label of (R) or (D), it is very difficult to see when “my side” is doing the EXACT SAME things as the “other side.”

                But hey, maybe I’m wrong and I misunderstood you; maybe you think BOTH sides have failed us(maybe the Dems, just marginally more), and that the Repubs. during the Bush era have few legislative achievements to show for a 6 year majority/super-majority.. Fortunately, I think most Americans agree with me on this, considering the vast majority of Americans see BOTH sides(all “three” if you include the TP) in a largely negative light.

            • bowersville says:

              “that we here highly resolve…that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom–and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

              Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg address

              Key words; “…government of the people, by the people, for the people…”

  2. Gary Cooper says:

    I think most of the venom this year can be placed squarely on the GA Senate. They are the ones who garner the bad press for Republicans. Sure, we have a few bad apples in the State House, but at least leadership has been able to keep them down to merely entertainment value or press fodder. It basically goes to a lack of leadership in the Senate as the reason why nothing substantial on tax reform has been done.

    The HOPE issue was a sticky point for several years and it is good to see the Governor put forth a detailed plan and get the legislature to act. It also seems his public/private reservoir plan is about to become law as well which should be a step in the right direction on our water issues. Let’s reside ourselves to the fact that nothing is going to happen with transportation issues until the referendums in 2012 and the same on anymore movement in water issues until the Appeals Court decision that should be coming down soon. Tax reform is looking less and less likely until the next session, which won’t be a bad thing because now our leaders can hear exactly what we think about it.

  3. bowersville says:

    Georgia has a long history of being a one party state. For 150 years the Democrats held the Dome, now the Republicans in a clean sweep. As an Independent my question when the clean sweep occurred was “are the Republicans ready for single party rule?”

    Part of that question was directed towards those elected, the other to the rank and file. When the Democrats were running the State, Georgia had a history of these type feuds. Now the Republicans are in the business of openly feuding.

    Big deal. It’ll all be worked out in the Republican primaries and that’s where the changes will be made if any.

    • Doug Deal says:

      This is why I wish state parties would divorse themselves of the national party baggage. When you tie them in, if the sentiment of the state favors one side more than the other (Georgia being conservative, Mass being liberal) you end up with single party states.

      Politics in the state should center around the sensibilities of the state, not the nation. Instead, people like Obama, Harry Reed or Nancy Pelosi serve as the de facto leaders of Georgia Democrats and is it no wonder why they are falling apart? If the Georgiacrats or whatever you would call an independent state Democratic party had the ability to maneuver itself to the center, then voters would have more choices. This would also force the GOP to improve to stay competetive and both sides would likely win.

      The more one sides the politics become the more important it is for serious primary challenges to all incumbents.

    • Funny thing is most Georgia Republicans used to be Democrats. When it all comes down to it, there’s not hardly a dime’s worth of difference between the two parties anymore.

      • rut roh says:

        With inflation, that should be termed “there’s not $5 worth of difference between the two parties anymore.”

      • saltycracker says:

        The difference is who gets to feed at the trough of taxpayer cash –
        Republicans of the “me first” cut me a break crowd or
        Democrats of the “other people’s money” you owe me crowd.

  4. Rick Day says:

    oh Bull.

    After decades of gutting education programs, Georgia is leading the nation in creating a new Idiocracy. GOP has got the Under 100 IQ vote nailed. You ain’t going anywhere.

    How does it feel to be associated with the new Party of Simple Thoughts™?

    Narrator: The years passed, mankind became stupider at a frightening rate. Some had high hopes the genetic engineering would correct this trend in evolution, but sadly the greatest minds and resources where focused on conquering hair loss and prolonging erections.

    Can I interest you in some nice Independent thought?

  5. NoTeabagging says:

    Maybe if we asked them, “What’s in it for Me?” they would respond, after all that is what most politicians ask first… directly or indirectly, of course.

    • analogkid says:

      Ask not what Republican legislators can do for you. Ask what Georgia Power lobbyists have done for Republican legislators.

  6. Goldwater Conservative says:

    You conservative keep making the same mistakes when evaluating the success of your platform. You think that just because you have a majority that it means you have a mandate. You do not.

    You also seem to think words like “conservative” actually have a meaning. It does not…it is merely a successful marketing ploy.

    So…where does that leave us? The state of perpetual acceptance of the status quo. You people are not going to stop voting republican, so, in the aggregate, the GOP has little to no incentive to change their way of doing business.

    By the way, as far as your comment about President Obama being unpopular among independents, when the GOP puts up a Newt Gingrich, a Sarah Palin, or a Michelle Bachman up for president you are going to see that middle ground flee the GOP as fast as you saw the left-of-right flee Nazi Germany in the 1930s.

    • KD_fiscal conservative says:

      “You people are not going to stop voting republican, so, in the aggregate, the GOP has little to no incentive to change their way of doing business.”

      Hate to admit it, but your probably right. Its going to take a lot more then an anti-Lt. Gov’t political coup(do most voters even know who/what the Lt. Gov. is/does), and a couple of wasted leg. sessions to get GA voters to change their voting habits. Also, all of the bills half-way intelligent people consider would moronic , are “brilliant” to the lowest common denominator and other Georgia ideologues, and thus will be effective at keeping the votes coming. Now if anyone brings up anything even marginally perceived to be pro-homo or pro-mesican…..

      Which is why I would want non-partisan redistricting, to keep the politicians on the edge of their seat, but we all know that’s not going to happen.

      • Goldwater Conservative says:

        I have been arguing for, mainly for the purpose of experimental research, a state or two to create a redistricting plan with the goal of making all districts within their political jurisdiction roughly equal regarding partisan make-up. After all, only the Senate was supposed to have the characteristic of continuity as a foundation.

        I would like for 10 minutes the Congressman from the 6h District, Tom Price, to actually explain to his constituents how an orthopedic surgeon worth $25million knows what is ailing the $50k to $150k/yr crowd and how to work in their best interest.

        I would also like to see how a Congressman from the 10th that has been sued for sexual harassment by his patients and was found guilty of practicing medicine without a license can tell the 15% of his district that is unemployed how engaging in symbolic attempts to outlaw abortion and blindside them with hate filled rhetoric will help them put food on the table.

        But…what the heck. They are republicans and we should not talk bad about them.

        • KD_fiscal conservative says:

          “sued for sexual harassment”
          I knew about the no license thing. When did that happened?

          Of-course, nothing surprises me with this guy anymore. He never finished his residency and thus was never board certified, nor could he ever get hospital privileges but, still doesn’t stop him from professes “I’m a doctor” but even more pathetic is when he self proclaims “I’m a ‘scientist'”(considering all he has is an undergrad Chem. degree). But as long as he throws his constituents a rhetorical bone every now and then, he is going to win every election from here on out.

          I work at a clinic in the northern part of the district, and its kind of funny to see them swooning over his erratic anti-government rhetoric, but then come in(most on Medicaid, or at the very least kids on PeachCare) trying to scam their way on to disability, workers comp., Medicaid or some other big government program, and complain how Obama cut medicare and is going after their social security.

          I am waiting for the day he takes it a little to far, even for the 10th district, and is primaried. Or worse, an old school southern dem. comes in and panders to all of the “values” stuff, but promises them all kinds of free gov’t goodies. That would probably get the Athens libs and blacks, and the northern whites(most of whom were dems anyway).

  7. Dave Bearse says:

    Lately? What about since Day 1? Obama and the Dems by GOP reckoning own an economic disaster and wars years in the making two years after assuming office. Come next election, the Georgia GOP will have been in the cockpit for a decade, without much to show with respect to transportation, water, education, tax reform, etc, etc, etc.

    I’m sure there have been a few good but tough things done deserving of kudos, but no big ones come to mind. Deal’s Hope scholarship changes seem to be satisfactory, but those changes were largely in response to developments over the course of the last couple of years of the GOP’s watch, not around on Day 1. Likewise there’s merit in the state’s water district, water conservation, and this year’s reservoir legislation, but nothing to jump up and down about given it took six-eight years in office to accomplish.

  8. saltycracker says:

    Gerrymandering and career representation for all the good reasons rarely works out.
    We just can’t get away from some systematic process to sort the winners and the loosers.

    Term limits (time variances by office) should be acceptable to both parties excepting those with some “greater good” or “me first” argument.

  9. SOGTP says:

    Republicans in Reagan’s day were very different than Republicans now. In the summer of 1994 when Rahm Emmanuel and BJ Clinton realized they were going to take a licking, they urged all Democrats able to switch parties to do so in order to water down the Republican Party.

    The Republican Party is nothing more than a sickening mix of Liberal Democrats and fake phoney Conservatives.

    Look at the Republicans in this state … Nathan Deal was a switcher in 1995. Chambliss and Isakson are fake phoney Conservatives. Jack Kingston brags about bringing home pork.

    In the State legislature Rep. Doug McKillip in Athens wants to subsidize solar panels, Sen. Greg Goggins wants to raise taxes to put up financially unfeasible trauma centers around the state.

    Folks we must purge the Republican Party of these fake phoney’s, othewise we’ll lose this nation.

    • saltycracker says:

      What makes sense is not political reality. To throw a Republican out he has to be one rung down than Charlie “I already have your money, dude” Sheen and his goddesses need to be underage illegal pygmy’s.

  10. SallyForth says:

    Charlie, a better question for Republicans in Georgia would be “What have you done for me EVER?”
    Republicans took over the Insurance Dept. in 1994 and have systematically changed laws and regulations that protected Georgia consumers (put in place by Democrats decades ago), and have let the insurance industry have their way with us – increase premiums at will, reject valid claims and say “sue if you don’t like it”, etc. out the wazoo.

    In 1994 Republicans took over the GA Education Dept. and presided over the debacles in Clayton County, Fulton, DeKalb, etc. of counties under their jurisdiction, plus have presided over GA’s race toward the bottom.

    In 2002 Perdue came in as Governor and never met a fat-cat giveaway he didn’t like, first thing he did was a tax rollback for big bidness and a rush to empty the Gov’s emergency fund he inherited. He did nothing about citizen problems like water, traffic/transportation, job creation, etc. – guess he was too busy with his FLA property given him by his fat-cat friend from Newnan. Plus he had to focus on “Go Fish” and setting himself up with Oakey Woods for post-Gov. years.

    What truly important thing have Republicans ever done for us in GA? Sure, they put on a good show with all their public hoo-hah about religious and medical matters concerning women’s rights, playing up to gun nut-jobs (not normal gun lovers and respecters thereof) by putting guns in churches and schools, and there’s always their fall-back smokescreen of choice – homosexuals!! All these are boogah-boogah distractions while they steal our tax coffers blind, help their big bidness friends import illegal foreigners to take GA jobs, rewrite the GA Code to favor the haves and dump on the have-nots, and on ad nauseum. Somebody give us one GOOD thing Republicans have done for us regular folks.

    • KD_fiscal conservative says:

      Wow, hate to agree with another Dem, but your right. Only thing you forgot to mention is Sonny and most of the other Georgia Repubs. were(are) all southern DEMS.

    • SOGTP says:

      Sally. I can give you a quick run down of Republicans have ever given you.

      1. EPA
      2. Bretton Woods Gone – GOLD Standard
      3. Americans with Disabilites Act
      4. SCHIP
      5. No Child Left Behind
      6. Patriot Act
      7. Homeland Security
      8. Medicare Part D
      9. Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq

      Do you want me to continue?

      Historical

      1. Income Tax – yes the Income Tax is a Republican invention
      2. Federal Reserve
      3. War of Northern Aggression
      4. The Great Depression
      5. The dismal 1950’s

      I’ll stop and take and cry for a bit.

  11. cheapseats says:

    As long as any of us continue to think in terms of “party”, we will all continue to get the same ol’ nothing that we’ve always gotten.

    Sadly, I doubt that this will change for another 40 to 50 years if ever. Humans like the contest paradigm of having two teams go against each other to see who wins – it has always been this way and probably always will. This works well in sports but no so much in the governance of civilizations.

    Cheerleading is not the same as leading.

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