Don Balfour Suspended; Stripped Of Chairmanship

State Senator Don Balfour has been suspended by a three member panel appointed by Governor Nathan Deal. By GA law, the suspension can only last until the end of the year.

Republican sources also indicate that Balfour hall been stripped of all committee assignments including his Chairmanship. Furthermore, Balfour has been suspended from the Republican caucus indefinitely, and can only be reinstated by 2/3 vote of the members.

The ball is now in Don Balfour’s court to resign. Should he decided to remain a State Senator, he is officially persona non grata at the Capitol.

Update: Received from the Georgia Senate Press Office:

ATLANTA (November 13, 2013) – The Senate Committee on Assignments met today and has made the following changes to Senate committee assignments:

Senator Don Balfour has been removed as Chairman of the Reapportionment and Redistricting Committee, as Vice-Chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee, and as an Ex-Officio member of the Banking and Financial Institutions Committee.

Senate Rule 2-2.1 allows the Committee on Assignments to remove Senators from committee officer positions and Senate Rule 2-3.2 (b) empowers the Committee on Assignments to remove ex-officio committee members. Senate Rule 2-3.3 prevents the Committee on Assignments from removing Senators from standing committees during a term.

Additionally, the President of the Senate has removed Senator Balfour from the Senate State Fair Tax Study Committee pursuant to Senate Resolution 72.

13 comments

  1. Napoleon says:

    And thus we once again see the concept of “innocent until proven guilty” receives no quarter in the court of public opinion, or the media.

    However, as this caase is and will continue to be a major distraction for Balfour, regardless of his guilt, he needs to do what’s right for his constituents and step down.

    • Charlie says:

      I choose to look at this as being sentenced by a true jury of his peers, a group that has already censured him. He just failed to take the hint.

    • Will Durant says:

      I have no sympathy for his constituents who voted him back in regardless of the black and white evidence brought to light by Jim Walls, et al., long before the election. The fact he claimed per diem for nearly 70% of the working days in 2009 including 86 “committee days” outside of the session for a Rules Committee which only meets during the session would have been proof enough for me as a voter. When did he work for Waffle House that year? Proof of his guilt or innocence in front of a jury is entirely another matter though, the historian in me hasn’t forgotten former Sen. Roscoe Dean.

      Of course the voters would have been better served if Mr. Olens hadn’t taken a year and a half to come up with an indictment as well.

      • Dave Bearse says:

        His constituents don’t need nor want sympathy. And besides, you’re not considering that the typical voter is about as informed as a bag of hair.

  2. Eric The Younger says:

    From a Senate Press release:

    Senate Republican Caucus Releases Balfour Suspension Letter
    ATLANTA (November 13, 2013) – The Senate Republican Caucus today released the attached letter suspending Senator Don Balfour (R – Snellville) from the Caucus. The letter cites the reason for the suspension as his indictment on multiple felony counts and the determination by the Governor’s review commission that the indictment relates to his official duties and would adversely affect the administration of his office and the interests of the public.
    # # # #

  3. Dave Bearse says:

    Remarkable mainly for the fact that it’s likely the General Assembly knew, or could have learned it choose to do so, what prosecutors know about the Balfour case, and yet the General Assembly did very little.

    There are similarities to Crawford Lewis predicament—a well-off powerful person with no need to do so ruined by their penny-ante chiseling.

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