Why Won’t “Campaign For Liberty” And “Georgia Taxpayers United” Tell The Truth?

March 20, 2014 9:30 am

by Buzz Brockway · 47 comments

Yesterday an email was sent out by Nathan Adams of a group called “Georgia Taxpayers United.” Adams is also the contact director for another group called Campaign For Liberty. Adams wrote:

I have an urgent message for you about saving your private health care plan in Georgia.

Despite pressure from grassroots citizens like you, Georgia Republicans are still playing games with your family’s health care by refusing to stop (or “nullify”) Obamacare.

And with the session ending THIS THURSDAY, time is quickly running out!

Our sources at the Capitol in Atlanta tell us that Republican “leadership” including Governor Nathan Deal, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, and Speaker David Ralston are desperate for any way to end the session without actually putting a stop to Obamacare.

Some of their underhanded tactics include:

*** Stalling and refusing to bring up bills for a vote,

*** Making political threats to anyone who dares to try and force a vote on these measures,

*** Duping unwitting politicians with promises of future political favors in exchange for keeping quiet, and

*** Lying to grassroots supporters like you by telling them that “there’s nothing we can do at this point.”

XXXXX it’s time to turn up the heat on these politicians and force them to keep their campaign promises!

Here is a pre-written email message that you may modify to your liking and send:

It is time for you to stop playing political games and nullify Obamacare! As a Georgia citizen I INSIST that you use every procedural ‘trick’ in the book to pass Rep. Moore’s bill language from H.B. 1014. We will be watching your actions, or inaction, on this issue closely.

There are numerous inaccuracies in this email beginning with the fact that late Tuesday night the House and Senate passed HB943 which was amended to contain the language from HB707, known as the Georgia Healthcare Freedom and ACA Non-compliance act. In other words, by the time Adams sent out his email, Georgia had already passed the most sweeping anti-Obamacare piece of legislation in the nation.

As for the supposed threats and bribes offered to prevent Moore’s bill from becoming law, there was no need to do such things because Moore has lost all credibility in the House. Moore has repeatedly thrown his colleagues under the bus and attempted to portray himself as the lone defender of freedom, justice and the American way. Not even his ally and Campaign for Liberty fellow traveler Charles Gregory is worthy of praise. Moore, as you will recall, also introduced a bill that would have allowed registered sex offenders to live, work, and loiter near places kids live, work, and loiter.

Incidentally, both Rep. Sam Moore, and Rep. Charles Gregory voted against HB943. Are Georgia Taxpayers United and Campaign for Liberty aware of this? Are these two Legislators to be considered as supporters of Obamacare?

Earlier in the session Moore attempted to gut HB707 and replace it with the language from HB1014. His attempt was voted down overwhelmingly. Why? I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but I am not willing to gut a bill I have read and co-sponsored in favor of a bill that never received a committee hearing and the author never bothered to explain. Sometimes you can make a snap decision on a simple bill, but Moore’s bill is based on a legal theory that has, as best I can tell, never been successful at any point in American history. Also, it’s bad legislative practice to demand your colleagues vote on a complex bill without giving them time to think about it.

Sadly, the email you see above is typical of Georgia Taxpayers United and Campaign for Liberty. Filled with inaccuracies and half-truths, these groups blast emails out on a daily basis, dragging down political discourse and alienating those who might agree with them more often than not.

Ronald Reagan used to say that a 70% friend is not a 30% enemy. In the minds of the people running Georgia Taxpayers United and Campaign for Liberty, a 99.99% friend must be cleaved from the herd and left to die in the wilderness. Francis Underwood would be proud.

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 10:03 am

Buzz, didn’t you vote for a $100 million Obamacare funding increase in HB 744? Here is the section I’m referring to: “”Increase funds for Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS) contractual services for new members enrolled due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2009 (PPACA).”

Buzz Brockway March 20, 2014 at 10:48 am

That’s a mischaracterization that the C4L folks have cooked up. The ACA is forcing people into medicaid because they are losing their insurance coverage so they go sign up for medicaid. More people signing up for medicaid increases Georgia’s budget. That was true before the ACA became law and it will be after it’s gone.

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 10:49 am

So you did vote for it?

Buzz Brockway March 20, 2014 at 10:57 am

Did I vote for the budget? Yes I did.

Why did Moore and Gregory vote against the toughest anti-Obamacare bill in the nation?

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 11:04 am

Go ask them their issue with 943! Do you care to know? You presumably are sitting right near them, blogging, instead of asking them. Go ask them.

You know they both voted for 707. You mentioned they both support 1014 above. Nullification.

You know what that bill is: http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/en-US/display/20132014/HB/1014

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:08 am

Larry, are you aware that prior to the motion made to amend 1014 that the bill hadn’t even been brought to our attention? We have caucus meetings every week. That would have been a great opportunity to mention 1014. Instead, you’re suggesting that months of work be scrapped on 707 in favor of an unvetted, brand-new piece of legislation nobody knew about.

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 11:12 am

So are you saying you would have supported it had it been brought to your attention . . . how long in advance? At the caucus meeting? That’s it?

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:27 am

If it had actually gone through the committee process and vetted? Maybe. I can’t really say yes or no definitively, because bills are often amended throughout the process.

Also, do you just answer questions with more questions? I don’t have my C4L handbook in front of me. Is that the way they tell you to debate?

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 11:31 am

You just used scripture to call me a “fool.” Another question: You expect someone you call a “fool” to debate on your terms? Why don’t both of you gentlemen take your cell phone right now (or during lunch) and ask Moore and/or Gregory to talk about their votes. All four talking about 943, 707 and 1014. That, we would like to see. If you have time to blog form the floor of the House on Sine Die, surely you have time to do that.

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:36 am

Charlie sits two seats down from me. Sam is directly behind me. I talk to both of them about their votes. Thanks for your advice though, Nathan.

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:05 am

Larry Harkins March 20, 2014 at 11:42 am

Good, go ask them. Not Nathan here. Though I am a C4L member. I support Rand, just like they do.

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:53 am

I’ve had some great conversations with Sam. Part of the problem though, is this: Sam has a habit of throwing his colleagues under the bus in his constituent newsletters to make himself look better, and to play the ‘victim’ card. He seems to want his constituents to believe that he is the ONLY principled person in this chamber. If making vague assertions about his colleagues makes him look better, so be it. If that works for him, he can have at it. But there’s not a whole lot of trust left in the tank.

thomaswheatley March 20, 2014 at 12:55 pm

RAND PAUL 2016 NO FEAR

Buzz Brockway March 20, 2014 at 3:17 pm

BTW Thomas, I demand a recount on the Golden Sleaze Awards. I should have been given one for pushing and Article V Convention.

Jason March 21, 2014 at 7:15 am

One thing that’s funny about that is a number of Ron Paul supporters I’ve talked to aren’t that high on his son. They’re probably not even close to a majority, just a grumpy few. They think Rand is a sellout, mostly because they’re still butthurt about his Romney endorsement.

Personally, I think Rand is the best thing to happen to the liberty movement. He’s not just preaching to the choir.

eschristian March 21, 2014 at 11:20 am

Don’t drag a respectable sensible politician like Rand into this! He understands the legislative process – unlike those you are speaking about.

eschristian March 21, 2014 at 11:26 am

Above comment was directed @Nathan/Larry/C4L in regards to dragging Rand into this!

John Pezold March 20, 2014 at 11:05 am

Proverbs 26:4

Ellynn March 20, 2014 at 11:13 am

I’m confused here… If people are losing their insurance coverage because of the ACA, which means they can afford insurance, how do they met the the Medicaid income cut off?

Harry March 20, 2014 at 11:17 am

I heard of one lady in her 50s who doesn’t have enough income to qualify for ACA, and thus even the subsidy won’t help her.

WesleyC March 20, 2014 at 11:27 am

You’re right Harry, those with incomes less than 100% of the federal poverty line are ineligible for subsidies on the exchange. That’s because they’re supposed to be covered by an expanded Medicaid program. Good thing Georgia’s moving forward with that…. oh, wait.

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 11:38 am

You understand that tax payers foot the bill for uninsured in emergency rooms now?

Ellynn March 20, 2014 at 2:40 pm

Per Buzz… “The ACA is forcing people into medicaid because they are losing their insurance coverage so they go sign up for medicaid”.

If they could afford insurance before is was lost, they are going to be above the income cut off for Medicaid, unless you have a free home, and get paid in creative ways the IRS does not know about.

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 2:49 pm

I agree what Buzz said does not make sense….My point is without any coverage the poor use emergency rooms that cost tax payers even more…

Ellynn March 20, 2014 at 3:02 pm

I agree – just following the string along…

Jason March 21, 2014 at 7:22 am

It’s true that the uninsured will utilize emergency rooms, but uncompensated care accounts for just 1.79% of national healthcare expenditures, according to Avik Roy. An October 2008 study by the Journal of the American Medical Association noted that “[o]nly about 17 percent of E.R. visits in the United States in the last year studied were by uninsured patients.” The study found that patients on government-run healthcare programs were more likely to visit the ER than the uninsured.

John Konop March 21, 2014 at 9:48 am

…….“[o]nly about 17 percent of E.R. visits in the United States in the last year studied were by uninsured patients.” The study found that patients on government-run healthcare programs were more likely to visit the ER than the uninsured…….

Which is why I have recommended for years to implement a dial a doc system for non emergency care, with no fee, and high up front for non emergency care for Medicaid people using county hospitals…. If you tied the system to drug stores the private sector would probably pay for it to get the business…. Also I am sure private insurance companies would want the option as well….BTW Kaiser does it now….

eschristian March 21, 2014 at 11:33 am

They have something like this John Konop:

http://findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/Search_HCC.aspx

Many doctors and nurses (a lot from the ER) volunteer at clinics like these – there is one here in Newton County that I know of. The only problem is the waiting list backlog – if you are not already established with them and have something acute. Education is needed to let folks know to get signed up with them before they have an acute episode (ear infections, strep throat, etc…).

“HRSA health centers care for you, even if you have no health insurance. You pay what you can afford, based on your income. Health centers provide

checkups when you’re well
treatment when you’re sick
complete care when you’re pregnant
immunizations and checkups for your children
dental care and prescription drugs for your family
mental health and substance abuse care if you need it

Health centers are in most cities and many rural areas. Type in your address and click the ‘Find Health Centers’ button to find health centers near you.”

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 11:30 am

The problem with the debate is we have a lot of spin that does not match facts…..Truth is enrollment is up…..problem is we need to really look at cost reduction…..neither side wants to have a real adult conversation about the issue. It is much easier to fire up the base from the left ie killing grandma, do not worry about cost…to the right, ie death panels and government take over…..

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101510480

……Shares of UnitedHealth Group, Humana, Aetna and WellPoint rallied Wednesday—with all four recording all-time highs in the wake of the Obama administration announcement that total enrollment in Affordable Care Act health exchange plans now tops 5 million. The move sent the S&P 500 managed care sector to a historic high on Wednesday. On Thursday, the sector continued its upward march…………

Harry March 20, 2014 at 3:04 pm

But many people such as the low risk unsubsidized young people are not signing up, because it’s a bad deal for them, and those are exactly the people Obama needs to cover the risk and cost of the others. The reason the insurance stocks are up is because Obama has passed the word to them that they will be “compensated” by the government for the excessive claims and basically guarantee their profits.

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Harry,

…. “compensated” by the government for the excessive claims and basically guarantee their profits….

It sort of works that way anyways…..ie state insurance commission rates…..the real issue is we need to contain cost…..also insurance has always been on a macro worse for young people…the problem is many use tax payers as emergency insurance policy…

Harry March 20, 2014 at 3:22 pm

I just don’t think more socialism aka Obamacare is the answer. The only way it halfway works is by way of disincentives, artificial (inequitable) subsidies, and penalties – and that’s not good.

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 3:27 pm

Indiana has done great job containing cost through an exchange for Medicaid…btw it was done by a GOP governor….before Obamacare….

Harry March 20, 2014 at 4:31 pm

Yes, but programs as administered by the respective states, is a different breed of cat from Obamacare.

John Konop March 20, 2014 at 4:49 pm

You are making my point! Why would you support a bill that does not allow the state, county or city the right to set up an exchange? This bill makes no sense? Sounds like big brother to me….Why not have a bill that gives an option to set it up or not…ie not forcing big brother….?

Harry March 20, 2014 at 5:30 pm

We should follow the 10th Amendment. Every state is different. One size doesn’t fit all.

eschristian March 21, 2014 at 11:40 am

Problem is – they can’t afford the health insurance offered through their work and they work so they make too much money for Medicaid. If you get insurance through your work – you don’t get the subsidies paid by the government to decrease your premiums. Also, you can’t drop your health insurance at your work and go get through Obamacare because again you don’t qualify for subsidies because your work offers insurance.

I need to look up the recent #’s because I know it would be more than the last time I looked this up but when last checked it takes a single mom w/kids making $60,000 before she can even out with the government benefits she gets if she just did not work at all.

Yet again – it is the middle class getting screwed to the wall on this! Our insurance for a family of four is more than most people’s rent/mortgage – we have to keep it because our son needs it, if not we’d roll the dice. It is BREAKING us but we are doing what we have to in order to make sure our son receives a needed treatment. We have the lowest option plan at my work because the middle to high options would be more than a house payment and a car payment combined!

Currently – the government takes well over half of the money I make in taxes and insurance every pay check – they have their big boot on our necks & we are sucking wind. That is why I work with others to fight big government solutions that cause havoc on the American people and our economy. Government is NOT the solution, it is most definitely the PROBLEM!

eschristian March 21, 2014 at 11:51 am
Blake March 20, 2014 at 3:49 pm

“Forcing” people into Medicaid? I don’t think so. Maybe the income-eligible are choosing to sign up for Medicaid rather than buy private insurance, but I’ll need more than an assertion to believe anyone’s being forced.

taylor March 20, 2014 at 8:14 pm

Larry,

I don’t think the increase in Medicaid enrollment has been explained very well. ACA did not expand eligibility in Georgia, because we have chosen not to expand eligibility. However, the ACA requirement that everyone get health insurance results in more people discovering that they are already eligible for Medicaid (under Georgia’s eligibility requirements). If someone is eligible, is Georgia to deny coverage? Or should the state let them enroll and just not pay the claims?

I don’t think a legislator voting for the budget is supporting Obama are.

seenbetrdayz March 20, 2014 at 12:41 pm

To be honest, I kind of always felt like the GA General assembly wasn’t going to do anything worthwhile to try to stop O-care even before reading any C4L newsletters.

sethweathers March 20, 2014 at 3:01 pm

Well said, Buzz!

saltycracker March 20, 2014 at 6:27 pm

Imagine big “bidness” (those already providing coverage) were counting on mandated health care to bring down costs as the more healthy were forced to get some skin in the game. It ain’t working out so good as the healthy aren’t signing up in mass, the enforcement is slack, the off the radar folks are increasing and the medical industry is fast morphing their business model.

Big “bidness” is fast raising their employees costs, changing plans and in some cases dropping retirees secondary coverage…..e.g. a big, very healthy railroad just put their retirees on notice and some working nurses just got a big increase.

As the industry is way ahead of politicians, the attempts by the GOP as they make obamacare look like Swiss cheese will only make the compliant private individuals pay dearly as the politicians wallow in paid premium public coverage and get blamed for mucking up the water. Why didn’t they offer a serious alternative or just sit quietly and let the democrats implode ?

Harry March 20, 2014 at 6:34 pm

If the GOP did nothing they’d get blamed for that too.

saltycracker March 20, 2014 at 6:42 pm

Our legislators should pick an insurance program on the market similar to what a current public employee has, give all those employees, including themselves, a raise equal to that, and let them go buy their own policy.

It’ll be good for the republican privatization idea and lock in taxpayers future exposure to public health care coverage costs, providing they don’t keep addressing it.

And they will understand their constituents world a lot better…….

The Last Democrat in Georgia March 21, 2014 at 11:57 pm

Buzz on the attack…I like it.

…Go get ‘em, Buzz!

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