Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Gonzo Lawmakers - Day 26

A daily recap of the Georgia Public Broadcasting show "Lawmakers". The show airs weekdays at 7:00pm with a replay at 5:30am the following weekday.

Day 26

* We must talk of the budget. I fear it. We must. Not yet.

* A week behind still and I fear I may never catch up. There is no choice but to trudge on. My only companions - my ghostly readers and the vaporous images on the screen.

* Nwandi is solo again. Hope all is okay with Susan.

* The appointment bill to allow the Governor the power to select four currently elected officials passed Senate committee.

* And there's Keocia in the usual Valarie spot! Girlfriend is moving up in the world!

* Sen. Bill Heath has hair the color of tin foil. Or it could be the unforgiving lights of the sterile committee room. He makes the good point that most people couldn't even name the candidates for these positions. He also points out rightly that most states don't elect these positions. It is rather shocking when outsiders learn we elect administrative positions.

* Sen. Renee Unterman, straying from her usual child safety causes, points out the Guv is already pretty powerful and doubts this thing will get out of the Rules Committee.

* Sen. Cecil Staton (R-Land Of Middle Georgia Spas) wants to allow us to register to vote online. Very forward thinking but fraught with peril. Vincent Fort (D-Land of a Thousand Rants) objects. He believes it will dilute minority votes and says it's a solution in search of a problem. Passed on a party line vote. We're getting to the point where bills are going to be more contentious.

* Valarie back at Hogwarts!

* Scowling House Clerks! The Streak continues!

* More trying to find tax cheats. This time tightening up business licenses. And we get a rather strange shot of one of the signs full of Asian script which dot Buford Highway. I get the feeling the Lawmakers camera crew had a hankering for Korean Barbecue.

* Billions! Billions for state coffers! Yeah, right.

* Chyron says Massage Parlors! This should be exciting. Let's hope for a happy ending. Of course, Cecil Staton is the sponsor. I once dated a massage therapist. Happy endings until it ended.

* Back to Valarie. Business inventory tax bill. They've tried to kill this thing for years. The locals usually scream bloody murder. This is sausage making at its finest. They essentially want to allow counties to opt out.

* More sausage making and we get a machine gun style series of clips. Including one that weirdly showed legislators eating lunch. Bizarre segment.

* The Senate defeated a ridiculous measure to protect us from the Federal healthcare bill (which at this point had not passed). It was defeated because the Senate Democrats held fast and it failed to reach the required 2/3 majority. Political sausage making at its finest. They will reconsider this at some point. That's called a tease in the bidness

* Leadership Series. Senate Pro Tem Tommie Williams. Oh lord, he's going to talk about the budget. Can you say we ain't got no money? I knew you could. Tommie shouldn't wear pale suits with his complexion.

* We still aren't close on a transportation plan. This is going to go down as the biggest do-nothing legislature in history. It's got so bad, the Speaker himself came to plead before the Senate Transportation Committee.

* A slight pause to say the Lawmakers team does a helluva job covering so much garbage and regurgitating it in a fairly palatable fashion.

* They are trying to give the Speaker and the Lite Guv subpoena power to obtain legislator's tax records to enforce the new ethics laws. That's pretty wild and might be a fine example of the pavement on the road to hell.

* Lawmaker Flashback! The Dean of the Senate, George Hooks in 1995. It's an eminent domain bill. This was about a pipeline they wanted to run right down the gut of the state. We've reached the time where they are talking about bills I remember. Shot of a legislator writing an actual letter. Strangely anachronistic given all are now seen tapping away at laptops.

* Ricky Bevington and her BOOK OF DOOM! Macon's raising taxes. Obviously local council member Erick Erickson was too busy hobnobbing at CNN since he raised nary a peep. Columbus is trying to save its crime lab. Savannah's St. Patrick's Day parade happened today....then...you know what I mean.

* Tomorrow we get to play Project Tom Crawford! But for now, that's a wrap!


nast said...

Can someone explain the partisanship issue over registering to vote online? I would have thought that would be a good thing, and did not understand the arguments made in the AJC article about how it would supposedly dilute minority votes.

griftdrift said...

That one puzzled me too. Usually it's the Democrats who are screaming "REGISTER EVERYONE!" If I had to speculate, I'd say the reasoning is because the African American population has less access to the internet. Perhaps one of our resident Democrats will drop by to clarify.

My main objection is technological i.e. have you ever met a DBA? Do you know what happens if they flip a bit?

nast said...

Yes, but I assume we have DBAs managing the voter database already. This seems like it would just be a new entry channel into that database, not necessarily an entirely new one.

Speaking of flipping DBAs, though, although I can see your post timestamped about 5 minutes after mine, it didn't show up until this afternoon...