Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Senate Bill 16 Withdrawn!

Disappointed does not begin to describe how I feel about the withdrawal of Senate Bill 16. The AJC reports that Senator Seth Harp (pictured to the left) realized SB 16 would not make it out the Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee.

Rumor has it that Lt. Governor Casey Cagle pressured Senator Harper to withdraw the bill. This is a very interesting rumor because Lt. Governor Cagle used to be on the record as saying he would NOT use his influence to stop SB 16 from making it to the Senate floor. Looks like Lt Governor Cagle has given in to Sadie Fields and the Georgia Christian Alliance. The Georgia Christian Alliance has threatened all the members of the Georgia General Assembly by stating if SB 16 is released from committee, they will add the floor vote of the bill to their annual election score card.

I have this is to say to Sadie Fields and the rest of her group:
I know you see this as a win, and it is a win. I also know you were more nervous about the issue of Sunday Sales this year than you were the past two years, and you had every right to be more nervous. The good people of Georgia are starting to wake up because they want fair-minded legislation and elected officials. People want a say in their government, the withdrawal of Senate Bill 16 took away a chance for people to have a say in their government.

To the Replubicans who expressed their disapproval of SB 16:
Shame on you. The one saying I seem to repeatedly hear from Republicans is Less government. Well, SB 16 was just that, yet so many of you walked away from it. So again, shame on you. Many voters will remember how you walked away from SB 16 when they visit the polls.

After work, I called Senator Harp's office and spoke with his assistant, Martin. After my conversation with Martin, it seemed SB 16 was withdrawn because of a lack of enough support from the members of the Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee. Is this the case, or does Senator Harp not want his staff to call out Lt. Governor Cagle?

I also left a message for Senator David Shafer, Chairman of the Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee to see what happened at the committee meeting today. We'll see how long it takes to get a response from his office.

I ask that you hold the members of the Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee responsible for the withdrawal of SB 16. Yes, it was Senator Harp who withdrew the bill; however, it would not have come to this action if the Senators on the committee would have shown their support for the bill earlier in the General Assembly. I ask that you call, email, or fax with your disappointment.

On a very personal note-- I am quite happy at the letters and emails I was able to generate among my friends. I had a number of very conserative friends who do not even drink alcohol sign letters of support of SB 16 because it is a bill that would have provided citizens a voice in their government.

As I receive any more information on SB 16, I will share it in I Was Born Doing Reference Work in Sin.

Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee Members
David Shafer (Chairman): 404-656-0048 (phone), 404-651-6768 (fax)
Eric Johnson (Vice Chairman): 404-656-5109 (phone), 404-657-9727 (fax)
Ed Harbison (Secretary): 404-656-0074 (phone), 404-463-5547 (fax)
Gloria Butler: 404-656-0075 (phone), 404-657-9728 (fax)
Steve Hensen: 404-656-0085 (phone), 404-651-7078 (fax)
Jack Hill: 404-656-5038 (phone), 404-657-7094 (fax)
Dan Moody: 404-463-8055 (phone), 404-651-6768 (fax)
Jack Murphy: 404-656-7127 (phone), 404-463-1381 (fax)
Mitch Seabaugh: 404-656-6446 (phone), 404-651-6768 (fax)
Doug Stoner: 404-463-2518 (phone), 404-651-6767 (fax)
Ross Tolleson: 404-656-0081 (phone), 404-651-6767 (fax)
Renee Unterman: 404-463-1368 (phone), 404-651-6768 (fax)
Tommie Williams: 404-656-0089 (phone), 404-463-5220 (fax)


Christopher David Daughtrey said...

First of all, since you say it is only a rumor, can you wait until you have some evidence to persecute Cagle? Thanks. I am NOT a big fan of his, but before you accuse him of lying about using his influence and lying in bed with the Christian Alliance maybe you should have a little more than “a rumor”. Yes, it could be a conspiracy that starts at Senator Harp’s office and goes deep into the Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee or it could be the truth. I think we should stick with ole William of Ockham until we have more info.

Secondly, wow. Shame on you Republicans? This is not just “an amount of government bill”. As you very well know, thanks to anatomy and physiology, ethanol is a psychoactive drug that negatively affects the GABA receptors. I don’t feel that it is such an absurd idea to be cautious as to who can make those decisions.

I am glad that the committee members realized that this bill was not one of lessening big government, but one about alcohol that has a deep impact on all those in the state. Like we have discussed before, there is some evidence to show that Sunday alcohol sales increase alcohol related injuries and deaths. If there is any truth in this, erring on the side of caution means saving lives. I feel absolutely no shame in that.

P.S. I have always been able to buy all the alcohol I need in the 6 days a week that are legal. If a person still can’t get all the alcohol they want in 6 days, I would agree there is a problem, but the solution is not allowing Sunday sales. :P

Chris Daughtrey said...

Sorry about leaving a second message, but I just noticed that Gloria Butler a Dem, did not show and was on your "neglecting their duties" list. Maybe not just Republicans should be receiving your “Shame on You” wag of the finger. Maybe Democrats are just as responsible for the failure of SB 16. Maybe Republicans are not the root of all the problems. Well…scratch that last one.