GA General Assembly: How Not To Lose

Let’s just say you’re a young lawmaker.  You had a bill pass the House that would make national headlines.  It’s a bill you really believe in. Unfortunately, along the way, not enough other people did.  The Senate killed your bill in the Rules Committee.  There are a lot of responses available to you.  Should this happen to you, the one chosen by Rep Jason Spencer after this happened to his HB 707 is probably what should be at the bottom of your list:

ATLANTA – State Representative Jason Spencer (R-Woodbine) will host a press conference TOMORROW, Tuesday, March 18, 2014, at 2:30 p.m. in the Rotunda of the Georgia State Capitol to discuss the status of HB 707 after the Senate Rules Committee’s recent decision to table the bill. 

“That eleventh hour betrayal effectively killed the bill, but it could still be brought back to life by amendment of companion legislation,” said Rep. Spencer. “Tomorrow, I will identify the Republican Benedict Arnolds, the King George the Third and his myrmidons who ship wrecked my path breaking, patriotic bill (HB 707) to prevent the federal Leviathan from commandeering the machinery of state government or resources to enforce ill-conceived federal health insurance mandates.  A patriot saves his country from his government. HB 707 would have been the first occasion in a century to draw a constitutional line against state complicity in endless federal encroachments.”

HB 707 would prohibit any state agency, department or political subdivision from using resources or spending funds to advocate for the expansion of Medicaid.  The bill would also prohibit the state of Georgia from running an insurance exchange; refuses federal grant money for the purpose of creating or running a state insurance exchange, and ends the University of Georgia Health Navigator Program. Lastly, HB 707 would prohibit the Commissioner of Insurance from investigating or enforcing any alleged violation of federal health insurance requirements mandated by Obamacare. HB 707 passed the House by a vote of 115-59

For more information on HB 707, please click here

So, anyone want to guess what Rep Spencer’s odds of getting a bill through Senate rules next year?  Or the next?


  1. ryanhawk says:

    Well if he is going to all this trouble I hope he points out Renee Untermann’s gigantic conflict of interest on healthcare issues given who signs her paychecks and how they make money. It is long past time for that conflict of interest to see a little sunshine.

  2. Charlie says:

    Spoiler Alert! From the Valdosta Tea Party:

    Gov. Deal and Lt. Gov. Cagle are being pressured to kill our bill

    The People are being betrayed by politicians in Atlanta – this just happened:

    HB707 (Nullify Obamacare) passed the Senate Rules Committee this morning. What happened next should make you angry and ready to take action! Lame-duck Republican Senator Cecil Staton made a motion to table the bill, it was seconded by Democrat Senator Steve Henson. They effectively killed the People’s bill that has already passed the House and has only two legislative days left to become law. Only an uprising by the People can resuscitate it. The process requires HB707 go before the Senate Rules Committee AGAIN!

    For now, begin to contact every member of the Senate Rules Committee and demand HB707 be moved out AND SENT TO THE SENATE FLOOR FOR A FULL VOTE. Our activist friends on the scene are requesting that all of us show up at the state capitol Tuesday morning at 10 am to fill the halls and pressure our legislators to act.

    HHS Secy. Sibelius was in Atlanta last week flashing $millions for “Medicaid expansion.” Big-money-lobbyists and the Chamber of Commerce are coercing Gov. Deal and Lt. Gov. Casey to cave to fed gov. We the People must stand in the gap to stop Obamacare.

    First, call the governor and Lt. Gov. offices:

    Gov. Nathan Deal 404-656-1776

    Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle 404-656-5030

    Then call and/or email the Senate Rules Committee. Your message: “Senator, please pass HB 707 to the Senate for a full vote.“

    Jeff Mullis (Chairman) — 404-656-0057- [email protected]

    Ross Tolleson (Vice-Chairman) — 404-656-0081 – [email protected]

    Bill Jackson (Secretary) — 404-651- 7738 –[email protected]

    Jack Hill — 404-656-5038 – [email protected]

    Fran Millar — 404-463-2260 – [email protected]

    Jack Murphy — 404-656-7127 – [email protected]

    Renee Unterman – 404-463-1368- [email protected]

    Ronnie Chance — 404-463-1366 –[email protected]

    Steve Gooch – 404-656-9221 – [email protected]

    Judson Hill — 404-656-0150 – [email protected]

    Butch Miller — 404-656-6578 – [email protected]

    David Shafer — 404-656-0048 – [email protected]

    Cecil Staton – 404-656-5039 – [email protected]

    What HB 707 Does:

    1. Prohibits any state agencies, departments or political subdivisions from using resources or spending funds to advocate for the expansion of Medicaid. This provision works hand-in-hand with HB990 to make it more difficult to expand Medicaid. HB990 would require legislative approval for expansion of the program, barring the governor from doing it by executive order.

    2. Prohibits the state of Georgia from running an insurance exchange.

    3. Refuses and federal grant money for the purpose of creating or running a state insurance exchange.

    4. Ends the University of Georgia Navigator Program

    5. Prohibits the Commissioner of Insurance from investigating or enforcing any alleged violation of federal health insurance requirements mandated by Obamacare.


    Sen. Tim Golden (404) 656-7580
    Sen. David Shafer (404) 656-0048
    Sen. Judson Hill (404) 656-0150
    Sen. Charlie Bethel (404) 651-7738
    Sen. Burt Jones (404) 656-0082
    Sen. Josh McKoon (404) 463-3931
    Sen. Renee Unterman (404) 463-1368
    Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle (404) 656-5030

    • xdog says:

      That’s a pretty representative release: using multiple exclamation points!!! and ALL CAPS, evoking images of the (Chosen) People ‘standing in the gap’ and ‘uprising’. I’ll be glad when they go back to papering windshields about the evils of gays and abortion. They’ll be just as irritating but they’ll do less harm.

    • Scott65 says:

      I guess Valdosta knows whats best for everyone else. This is what happens when you allow these “show bills” meant to pacify the base. We all know this was never meant to see the light of day. Memo to TP…you’re over. Get with the picture

      • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

        It’s a very foolish thing to say that the Tea Party is “over”, particularly when the Tea Party movement continues to be a very powerful force to be reckoned with, both in Georgia and American politics as a whole.

        Saying that the Tea Party is “over” is very much a case of wishful thinking on the part of many, particularly for those in the Republican establishment and for those on the left side of the political spectrum.

  3. The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

    In State Representative Spencer’s defense, he most likely thought (like many onlookers throughout the state, including myself), that because of the GOP legislative supermajorities and GOP control of the Governor’s office, his bill would easily traverse through the legislative process and be passed into state law.

    Given the GOP’s total domination of state government (most particularly the GOP’s domination of the state legislature and the Governor’s office), it is somewhat understandable why Rep. Spencer and those on the hard right of the political spectrum might feel a very-deep sense of betrayal in the wake of the unexplained failure of HB 707 to advance to the floor of the Senate for a vote and be passed into law.

    Could the failure of HB 707 be yet another case of the supermajority Georgia GOP’s fear of the state’s creeping demographic changes?

    • Scott65 says:

      No…just a couple of Gold Domers woke up from the fog, and realized this was a stupid and horrible bill and it needed to be killed. Read the bill. I did and you’d effectively throw everyone who signed up to the wolves. It would also effectively make the insurance commissioner not do his job. It would remove any kind of state oversight in healthcare/insurance issues. It was a base “show bill”. They come up with 2 or 3 every year. This was meant to die before now…guess Spencer didn’t get the memo.

  4. The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

    There’s been a recent update to this story…

    State Representative Jason Spencer cancelled the afternoon press conference that he had scheduled where he planned to identify the Republican lawmakers in the State Senate whom he felt betrayed the cause to stop Obamacare in Georgia.

    Rep. Spencer cancelled his afternoon press conference after receiving a “significant commitment” from Governor Deal’s office on the bill going forward.

    • Michael Silver says:

      He should have done the conference. The myrmidons know that nobody will care after Sine Die.

  5. Ludwig Von Beachbum says:

    Well sadly history repeats itself and strong men still have hope in South Carolina leading the way against an oppressive federal government . I raise my Tennessee Bourbon to those that still have balls, in South Carolina. Maybe Georgia will catch up but what would you expect with a governor so crooked that he will have to be screwed into the ground.

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