Posted: 10:07 am Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

Brian Kemp tries to tamp down envy for Mississippi’s three-week runoff 

By Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

Recognizing some state Capitol unhappiness with this year’s new election calendar, which cut short the annual legislative session and rewarded Republicans candidates for U.S. Senate and others with an expensive, nine-week runoff, Secretary of State Brian Kemp may be trying to head off some rash fixes.

In a letter dispatched last Friday to the governor, lieutenant governor, and leaders of the House and Senate, Kemp said he was aware that “many potential solutions” are being discussed by state lawmakers and others.

Your daily jolt on politics from the AJC's Political insider blogSome, Kemp said, have pointed to Mississippi, where U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran will face GOP challenger Chris McDaniel in a runoff next Tuesday, just three weeks after the state’s initial primary.

Both Georgia and Mississippi have drawn objections from the U.S. Department of Justice for calendars that don’t permit the timely transfer – particularly in runoff elections – of ballots by U.S. military personnel overseas and other ex-pats.

Mississippi was able to cut a deal with the Justice Department that allows it to use, at least temporarily, a system of instant runoffs. That won’t work in Georgia, Kemp told the Capitol’s Republican leadership:

“I know that many have discussed a system like this in Georgia that would allow us to return to our traditional elections calendar. Let me tell you in no uncertain terms that the voting and tabulation equipment that Georgia uses now cannot facilitate an instant runoff or ranked voting procedure.

“If an instant runoff or ranked voting procedure were legislated to cover [overseas] balloting, that procedure would have to be conducted outside the perimeters of the State of Georgia’s certified voting system…We are currently looking at other electronic options for military and overseas voting and will share these with you as we learn more in coming weeks. “

In an interview this morning, Kemp said Mississippi’s agreement with the Justice Department is for one year. That state’s legislature will have to address the problem head-on in 2014.

Kemp also told us that one option he’s looking at is a secured, Internet-based voting system for overseas military personnel currently being used by West Virginia. But the price tag is $3,700 per ballot, he said.

Kemp said that he understands that state lawmakers may want their imprint on the 2016 calendar, which includes a presidential primary. “We just want to be in on the discussion with them,” he said.

***

Former Georgia Democratic party chairman Mike Berlon has surrendered his law license to the Georgia Supreme Court – tantamount to being disbarred, Dave Williams of the Atlanta Business Chronicle reports:

The justices acted one year after reprimanding Berlon for violating legal ethics for failing to pursue a child custody case on behalf of a client he had agreed to represent and then misinforming that client on the status of the case.

***

Gov. Nathan Deal’s suggestion a few weeks back that he wanted to more narrowly define who can file a whistleblower lawsuit caused a stir, particularly given its timing after the first in a wave of settlements of ethics lawsuits that rocked state government.

He elaborated on Monday, days after the second round of settlements pushed the total cost to taxpayers to nearly $3 million to end the legal battles. He said lawmakers “certainly” need to review a court’s ruling that automatically granted whistleblower status to government employees charged with investigating state agencies and employees.

Said Deal:

“None of us want a situation where you have any agency within state government where someone cannot be fired for legitimate reasons and could seek the protection of a whistleblower statute as a defense to their being removed.”

The governor said he doesn’t want to tamper with the purpose of the whistleblower statute, which he said was “very useful and good.”

“But you should not create, by virtue of the opinions of the appellate courts, a class of state employees who are virtually immune to having their positions altered or their jobs terminated – regardless of the purpose or justification for that – simply because they’re classified as a whistleblower-protected individual.”

He pointedly added:

“Just remember – you don’t have to be right about what you claim you’re blowing the whistle about. You can be totally wrong and still be entitled to receive damages. That’s what I think is misunderstood.”

***

On that same topic, Common Cause Georgia today is calling for the dismissal of Holly LaBerge as executive secretary of the state ethics commission.

“This is about accountability,” said William Perry, Common Cause’s executive director. “The leadership of this agency played a major role in the mismanagement that led to Georgia taxpayers being on the hook for $3 million paid out to ethics whistleblowers.”

Our AJC colleague Aaron Gould Sheinin tells us that he asked commission chairman Kevin Abernethy about LaBerge’s job status last Friday. She “is and remains” the top staffer for the agency, Abernethy replied.

***

On the heels of Georgia Right to Life’s announcement of a national personhood group, we asked if, after supporting U.S. Rep. Paul Broun in the U.S. Senate primary, the group would weigh in on the runoff.

“There are no efforts to endorse either Congressman Kingston or David Perdue,” spokeswoman Genevieve Wilson said.

Both Kingston and Perdue have declared themselves to be in favor of allowing abortion in cases of rape or incest. This does not comport with the GRTL view.

***

U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., is seen as the Deep South tea party candidate for majority whip, the No. 3 leadership position in the House. But a lot of conservatives don’t agree with the characterization, and the wounds stem from his time at the conservative Republican Study Committee — a post he won with the backing of the current leadership over Georgia’s own Tom Graves.

Breitbart.com’s Jonathan Strong gives a detailed account of the Scalise criticism from the right. A taste:

A leading point of contention were the RSC’s “legislative bulletins,” which include detailed summaries of each bill and amendment, including any “conservative concerns” the RSC had about those bills.

The guides have long been valued reading to GOP lawmakers, and under past chairmen, the bulletins had the power to sway a lot of votes. But the documents have become watered down under Scalise, former aides said.

“Staff were encouraged as a whole not to issue conservative concerns. It created almost a policy of appeasement in RSC with a clear goal of trying to elevate Scalise personally,” says a former RSC staffer who chafed under the restrictions.

***

A U.S. House Democratic Super PAC is circling the wagons in John Barrow’s 12th District of Georgia. The Washington Post reports that House Majority PAC has reserved another $6.2 million in TV airtime around the country this fall, including $268,835 in Augusta and $279,904 in Savannah. Interestingly, the group did not reserve any time in Georgia in its first round of buys in April.

***

In the coastal First Congressional District, state Sen. Buddy Carter is out with an ad attacking his Republican runoff rival Bob Johnson. Watch below.

Wondering about the pro-Obamacare association for which Johnson is a “dues-paying member”? It’s the American Medical Association — the country’s largest organization of physicians.

UPDATE: 11:30 a.m. Via our friends at Georgia Tipsheet, here’s the response ad from Johnson, calling the AMA attack “misleading” and declaring Carter is a “liberal” who once said Obamacare is “not so bad.”

The “not so bad” is from this clip, where Carter says “some of the things that have happened so far are not so bad.” Carter has said repeatedly he wants to repeal the law.

***

In the 10th Congressional district GOP runoff, Newt Gingrich has endorsed Mike Collins — son of former Rep. and Newt colleague Mac Collins — over Jody Hice. The video is here.

***

Collins and Hice have three debates coming up, held by local GOP groups, that are open to the public. Here’s the schedule, via our AJC colleague Jeremy Redmon:

7 p.m. June 24

Old McDuffie County Courthouse

337 Main St., Thomson

 

6 p.m. July 8

Oconee County Library

1080 Experiment Station Road, Watkinsville

 

7 p.m. July 16

Georgia Military College

Goldstein Center for the Performing Arts

201 E. Greene St., Milledgeville

***

Twenty-four Democratic state lawmakers have endorsed Valarie Wilson in her runoff against state Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan, D-Austell, for state school superintendent.

The list includes nine senators and 15 of Thomas’ House colleagues:

Sens. Vincent Fort, Ed Harbison, Emanuel Jones, David Lucas, Nan Orrock, Freddie Powell Sims, Gloria Butler, Ron Ramsey, Steve Henson;

And Reps. Simone Bell, Carolyn Hugley, Sharon Beasley-Teague, Debbie Buckner, Roger Bruce, Pam Dickerson, Gloria Frazier, Mary Margaret Oliver, Henry Howard, Nikki Randall, Earnest Smith, Mickey Stephens, David Wilkerson, Melvin Johnson and Coach Williams.

From the press release:

“The most important thing we can do to improve educational outcomes is to have in place the right leadership. In order for Georgia to have economic success, we must first create educational success of our children. I believe Valarie Wilson is the right leader to ensure educational success for Georgia’s children,” said Rep. Carolyn Hugley, whip of the House Democratic Caucus.

The opposition is not unexpected. Morgan is allied with charter school forces that have targeted some of these same Democrats over the last two election cycles.

***

The results of the 2013 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey, released last week, provides proof that the bliss of ignorance is still a powerful force. From Andy Miller of Georgia Health News:

In a CDC-sponsored survey, Georgia high school students answered questions on smoking cigarettes, wearing bicycle helmets, carrying a weapon, drinking alcohol, having suicidal thoughts and trying marijuana.

But the state’s students, once again, did not answer questions about their sexual behavior. They didn’t get the chance.

For more than a decade now, Georgia has deleted the questions on sex. So unlike most of their counterparts nationally, the state’s students were not asked about whether they have ever had sexual intercourse, and whether they wore a condom during intercourse.

 

 

100 comments
Bubba30342
Bubba30342

The fratricide among Republican racing to the right wing extreme is pathetic. They leave no room for common sense moderately conservative leadership to emerge in our party. 


PSWallace
PSWallace

" U.S. military personnel overseas and other ex-pats"

I'm sure no slight was intended, but what is this "other" bit? The piece of paper that sends personnel overseas are called "Orders", not "Choice".

This is not to slight ex-pats. I can perfectly understand the desire to live elsewhere, though not a choice I see myself making.

MiltonMan
MiltonMan

GaBlue:

"As a Georgia taxpayer, I am really cheesed off at how much this Govenor's shady dealings have cost us! I expect a man in that position to be a better steward of OUR money. What a shame people let their integrity go the way he has."

Have you ever once complained about the millions that Fulton County Democrats have caused the taxpayers to shell out for lawsuit settlement??? Of course not.  How your last democrat governor that cost the taxpayers millions in defending his gerrymandering districts that were shot down by the GA supreme court???

Bernie31
Bernie31

Only would a Republican be envy of Mississippi for anything! Everyone else would just Flush, wash their Hands and Walk Away!

JackClemens
JackClemens

Let's settle it with American Idol-style voting.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

Hey, where is NWGAL and its hand up the sock puppet?

DS
DS

"...has pushed the total cost to nearly $3 million..."

Actually, the total is nearly $3.2 million.

From Aaron Gould Sheinin's article:

"Streicker will receive $1 million, while Hair will be paid $410,000. Murray-Obertein settled for $477,500.

The state in May agreed to pay former commission director Stacey Kalberman $1.3 million after a Fulton County jury agreed with her claim that she was forced from office for investigating Gov. Nathan Deal’s 2010 campaign."

That comes to $3,187,500.

EdUktr
EdUktr

In opposing Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan Democrats from the anti-reform wing of the Party are up against inner-city parents sick to death of failing public schools. And the teachers' unions perpetuating them:

ref: http://tinyurl.com/m68lp8o

honested
honested

I'm glad brian kemp is finally admitting the 'Diebold' voting system we have in Georgia is faulty and needs to be rewritten or replaced.

Since the alternative he suggests is 3,700.00 per ballot, maybe we should look at the 'certified voting systems' used in other Civilized countries. Countries where guaranteeing a hefty profit for the system provider is not 'job one'.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

"settlements of ethics lawsuits that rocked state government"  should read cost of doing government business in the Democratic Party island of Fulton County that the AJC tried to blow out of proportion. 

Valerie Wilson is not going to get elected to state wide office because she is a Democrat.

Of course, ignored here is this political news:  The Savannah Morning News was at the Georgia School Board Association during their summer conference last Friday, and he was asked: “Well, how are you going to do what you want to do without raising taxes?”
Carter replied and tipped his hand: " We don’t. We cannot and I would not ask the people of Georgia to pay more in state taxes … right now.”


This Walter Mondale moment video (and/or enhanced audio) will be in pro Deal ads after Labor Day: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=k6ZvHsBVbec

DewieCheatem_n_Howe
DewieCheatem_n_Howe

@MiltonMan 

Attempt to deflect all you want. The issue at hand is a Governor with the backing of his super majority legislature of the same party that is allowed to effectively hire and fire state employees at all levels on a whim. I'm not sure a Southern Governor has gotten away with this much control of state employment since the Kingfish.

GaBlue
GaBlue

@MiltonMan


Actually, yes. The county jail's violation of the law -- and continuous gaffes and fines as a result -- is a disgrace. I also tried to get the good people of N. Fulton to get involved two years ago to oust that CROOK of a tax collector, lining his own pockets on a technical loophole, bullying people all over the county, scamming them out of their property which he then snaps up for a song. But nooooooooooo, y'all could not be bothered to vote in the Democratic primary, which is where many of the county offices are decided. I get involved all over the place, and if you did too, you'd actually KNOW me. But please, go back to hiding behind the little Milton wall you're trying to build to keep yourself safe from the great unwashed masses of everybody who is not somebody in your tiny little world.

honested
honested

@MiltonMan 

So that whole 'obey the law' thingy doesn't work for you either?

Why do conserrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrvatives hate reality so much?

honested
honested

@JackClemens 

With something!

Of course, there it would cost too much to dig out from our current, flawed, opaque monopoly provider.

The_Centnst
The_Centnst

@The_Centrist This is a sock stealing puppet scam...no wait, this is a puppet stealing sock bum...no wait, this is a scum stealing puppet sock....Aw never mind, I'm so confused.

GaBlue
GaBlue

@DS


As a Georgia taxpayer, I am really cheesed off at how much this Govenor's shady dealings have cost us! I expect a man in that position to be a better steward of OUR money. What a shame people let their integrity go the way he has.

GaBlue
GaBlue

@EdUktr


Are YOU a Democrat? If not, your motives for commenting on the Democratic primary are, at best, highly suspect.  I would also doubt that you're an "educator" of any kind, based on your references to teachers' unions which do not exist in Georgia, and the utterly non-intellectual choice of a blog name. Actual educators cringe at that kind of egregious twisting of our language, and tend to use something slightly more indicative of an IQ.

honested
honested

@EdUktr 

Name the 'teachers unions' of which you speak.

Only you would think that handing education over to the likes of 'the walton family foundation' is a good idea.

Lynn43
Lynn43

@The_Centrist  We knew Deal would have a spy at this event, but Deal didn't even show up for his speech.  I'm sure he knew that Mr. Carter was well received, and he knew that he would not get the same response.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist  what is your proposal to raise revenue for the state?  Budget cuts are not enough because there will always be expenses that the state must pay so what do you propose?  As far as healthcare is concerned what is your proposal to save the state money other than medicaid cuts?  The state still has billions of dollars in bills for the uninsured that are seen in emergency rooms and for the mental health that are seen in hospitals so what is your solution to save the state billions for this problem other than turning down medicaid because without medicaid the billions that the state spends in hospital care is still there?  Please do not cut and paste someone elses thoughts or use GOP spin I only want to hear what The_Centrist would do.

honested
honested

@The_Centrist 

What an odd view you have of 'what is news'.


Kamchak
Kamchak

@The_Centrist 

Reposting stupidity from the downstairs thread doesn't make it any smarter.

Just sayin'.

td1234
td1234

@GaBlue @DS And yet there has not been one shred of evidence saying Deal had any part in the decision to fire any of these people. 


The Democrats keep trying to say 1 plus X equals Deal but then can not tell us what X represents. Until you can solve X it does not matter. 

EdUktr
EdUktr

@GaBlue @EdUktr

Then let me put it a different way ...

Deal 44%; Carter 38%

Kingston 43%; Nunn 37% 

Perdue 43%; Nunn 38%

—Latest poll results from 11Alive News: http://tinyurl.com/ouq4e3d

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@Lynn43 - Yea, the "spy" was a reporter from the Savannah Morning News.  Undoubtedly part of the right wing conspiracy that made up Monica Lewinsky, too.

Or in the more modern lexicon:  "It was Bush's fault"

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser The majority of the people seen in ER's are either illegal or adults that choose not to pay for insurance. 


Dr. Barge had a plan to go from a self-insured model for Medicaid to one where the state pays the premium for Medicaid to private insurers. 


The projected savings would then be put into increased spending on education.  

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@StraightNoChaser - Revenue increases with population, businesses/jobs, and a better ecoonomy.  It does not need to be increased by heavier tax burdens which are counter-productive.  Forcing the unreported income earners and tax cheats to pay via a consumption tax would also increase revenues, but would be better spent elsewhere than on Medicaid expansion.

There are no Medicaid cuts - just not more increases to our already bloated, corrupt, abused, and overlapping welfare safety net.

honested
honested

@td1234 @GaBlue @DS 

You might want to review the testimony in the Kalberman suit and reread the verdict.

Attempts to nullify a legitimate jury verdict won't whitewash shady.

GaBlue
GaBlue

@EdUktr


Yes, those organizations exist. Do they have collective bargaining power to enforce a minimum salary, tenure, or benefits for you? Or are they still waiting for the chance to make that happen here in Georgia? Please do enlighten us to public school teachers' salaries and rights here that these "unions" have won for you. Thanks!

honested
honested

@The_Centrist 

There's an excellent article on RCP today explaining in great detail exactly why it STILL IS BUSH'S FAULT (although wrong wingers wont look beyond their noses to see).

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 Medicaid already is being managed by private insurers in the state of GA (Wellcare, Peachstate, and Amerigroup).  They do not pay the bills for these patients so hospitals and private doctor offices do not accept one or more of these plans.  How do I know this?  Because I work for a hospital that does not accept one because they do not pay their bills so all though the patient walks in with a health insurance card they walk out with a bill because the insurance is no good which still leaves you with a billion dollars and counting of uninsured cost for the state.  Again, patients have jobs but they do not make enough to pay for insurance they are not chosing to not have insurance they simply can't afford it.  Your solution is no good either.  What else do you propose to get rid of the billion dollars and counting that the state will continue to pay in uninsured and mental health cost?  No cut and paste, no party spin and pundit quotes.  What else do you propose?

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234  - This is just one more AJC liberal who is more interested in theory/ idealism than facts.  Time to move on.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist this is part of the solution but not the entire solution when the jobs that are created are not paying a liveable wage to allow people to get ther own healthcare. So what else do you propose to take care of the billions of dollar that the state will still be spending in ER visits and for the mentally ill?  Again no spin and no cut and paste.  I work in a hospital so I know what I am talking about I do not have to research anything because I see it on a daily basis people with jobs but no insurance.  How does the state save billions for these people?

td1234
td1234

@JackClemens Where is the crime and where is the actual evidence, peoples suppositions in a civil case is not evidence, to tie Deal to having these people fired? 


If and when you find some evidence then what crime was committed (Remember this is a right to work state)? 

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser Manage is the key word you used. The state is self insured and therefore pays the actual bills and can not budgetarily plan on what the cost will be from year to year to actually pay the bills for the Medicaid patients. 


If the state went to a model that paid a set premium, that could be bid out to the lowest bidder, then the insurance company takes on the risk and reward and the state can budget the cost.   

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist and you are just one more misinformed party voter whose only answer is to name call when you have nothing else. What facts have you presented that has come from your brain and not someone else's?  Present some then get back with me.

honested
honested

@td1234 @JackClemens 

Proof, that ignorance (especially when intentional) must certainly be bliss.

So much for the concept of 'personal responsibility' or 'law and order', when it flies in the face of republiklan mythology, survival in office is all that matters!

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234 - A right to work state that has to go through lots of administrative hurdles, hearings, and appeals to get rid of incompetent or teachers who slack off.  They are on yearly contracts; but after a few years they are far removed from being "at will" workers between contracts and new contracts are expected.  Some folks, though, claim we are not allowed to term it as "tenure".

GaBlue
GaBlue

@The_Centrist


Interesting. I'm wondering then, why Georgia teachers have no collective bargaining power in this state. (According to my stepmom, a retired public school teacher.) Did this change? I'd enjoy learning the details about when and how that happened.

td1234
td1234

@The_Centrist I am as Conservative as anyone on this blog and can tell you there is no unions for teachers in GA. 


The "dues" these organizations collect are paid for liability insurance for teachers and lobbying efforts for teachers. This is no difference then what the Chamber of Commerce does for small businesses and professionals working. 


If there is no collective bargaining then there is no union. 

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 good idea in fact great idea. However, I noticed you use the word "had" when speaking of this Dr. Barge so I am assuming that the Dr's plan is not on the table which takes me back to what the reality is for the state of GA at this point in time.  The governor has turned down fed money for Medicaid and has signed that HB bill so under the current circumstances what can be done to take care of the billion dollars and counting that the state is spending and will continue to spend on the uninsured and mentally ill?  Again these billions in bills are going no where and patients who work do not make enough to pay for their own health insurance.  All of this pre-empts and wipes out any savings from not accepting medicaid money from the feds. If the Dr's plan is on the table which politician running for office in this state is for it?  Is this something that the GOP in this state is for and will support this politician running for office on?  If not what else can be done? 

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist I said no cut and paste...You know why you can't answer my question?  It's because you don't have an answer.  The only answer you can give is what you are trained to say by politicians, the media and party pundits.  You live in a bubble Centrist.  I work in the trenches with these patients on a daily basis so what you say is pure spin and nothing else.  I will answer the question for you, that billion dollar bill is not going anywhere and it's pure GOP spin when the state talks about how much money will be saved by turning down medicaid money from the feds when they know damn well that the state will still be spending billions on the uninsured and mentally ill that show up in ER's and hospitals. 

td1234
td1234

@The_Centrist Tenure in Georgia means a worker has the right to "A (one) hearing to determine if the local Principal could show cause to fire them. Tenure was established as a way to stop political patronage for civil servants. IMHO it is a good thing because I do not want either party to place partisans in the classroom brainwashing my children with pure lies. 


These are people that have worked three years with good reviews. If a Principal or management can not tell within three years if a worker is going to be a slacker then I would think the Principal needs to be fired. 


Most horrible offences like child molestation and coming to school on drugs in not covered by tenure and those people can be fired immediately. 

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@GaBlue - Nope, no collective bargaining just like police and firefighters in Georgia.  Membership/dues are also optional because like 23 other states, Georgia is a "right-to-work" state that does not allow compulsory unionism.

OriginalProf
OriginalProf

@td1234 @The_Centrist Just to support what you say, I'll note that according to Georgia Code20-2-989, collective bargaining by elementary and secondary public school teachers is not permitted.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234 - Tell that to the unions and the teachers that belong to them.  They are registered as unions and contribute to Democrat campaigns like unions.

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser There was a plan but the teachers, state employees and independents  of Georgia decided Barge was not the answer they were looking for and wanted to throw their eggs into Carter's cart and I do not see any of the other candidates want to pick up the plan.  


Well the legislature passed a bill to make it their decision to or not to expand Medicaid is in the total hands of the legislature. 


Since the legislature has also passed a Constitutional Amendment to cap the states income taxes and it will pass by more than 70% of the people then there is no money to expand Medicaid and the legislature will not expand Medicaid so this whole argument is really moot. 

td1234
td1234

@The_Centrist I have to side with the progressives on this one. If there is no collective bargaining and no union contracts then the teachers in Georgia do not have a union. 


They have a professional association much like the Chamber but nothing more.  

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 and The_Centrist based on your thoughts that "the converstation is moot" the states GOP has done something that will continue to cost the state billions with no back up plan to get rid of the bill. Basically, they forced one parties ideology on the entire states tax base which is not fiscally conservative once the scab is pulled off to reveal the sore.  My post is not to promote the ideology of either party, I could give a rat's you know what about a dem or republican, but I do care about the lies that are being told about savings from rejecting medicaid money when it's a bold faced lie.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

td posted "this whole argument is really moot".

Yep.

A lot of that going on around here.

Kamchak
Kamchak

@The_Centrist 

No longer playing...

OH, NOES!

Anything_But_A_Centrist_Boy is gonna stamp his wittle feet and then take his ball and bat and go home.

How can we bear it?

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist you call me a hard line partisan when I work in healthcare?  What facts am I ignoring when I don't have to rely on the media or a politician to tell me what I see on a daily basis?  The reason why you no longer want to play is because for once on this board you can't BS someone who actually does not have to fall back on a media clip or what some polititian or political pundit has to say. By the way I am an independent voter, you know the one that dems and republicans want and need.  PS ...That mentally ill I spoke about will be coming to a neighborhood, grocery store, gas station, job, school, etc....near you if the governor decides to stop paying the necessary bill for them to be seen, a billion dollars and counting.  Good luck

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234 - Once again, those "professional organizations" call themselves unions, register as unions, collect dues like unions, lobby like unions, and contribute to Democrats like unions.  The ONLY things they don't have in GA is collective bargaining rights and compulsory dues.

I'm done with the semantics of this and "tenure".

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser One more time. How are we going to pay to expand Medicaid? Where is the money going to come from? How many more furlough days are you willing to give teachers? How many less days of school should our children suffer? 

honested
honested

@The_Centrist 

You may have a point.

This sort of problem, in Georgia is dealt with in a fashion analogous to having shot oneself in the foot.....the obvious thing to do is shoot the other foot so they match.

It won't heal the first, but neither will pretending.

honested
honested

@The_Centrist @td1234 

A 'union' that does not negotiate the employment contract for the member is not and should not be considered a 'union'.

Get out a dictionary and put this specious argument to bed.

td1234
td1234

@The_Centrist Georgia teachers do have tenure rights after they sign their 3rd contract. Barnes took it away from them, got kicked out of office, and then Sonny returned it to them. 


Teachers can voluntarily belong to a "union" in GA if they choose to but Georgia teachers are not unionized. Teachers unions in GA a nothing more than a professional organization just like the chamber. 


The semantics is played with Conservatives actually using the word teacher union in the same sense as teacher union is used in CA or NY. Teachers in Georgia are not represented in the same manner and do not make anywhere the money, retirement, benefits or protections as teachers in those states (and they should not because those states unions are totally bogus)

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 I thought you would catch on before I hit 285...With the billions that are saved from paying hospitals and ER's for the uninsured and the mentally ill.  What we have now is a state that has turned down medicaid and that will continue to pay billions for the uninsured and mentally ill because they are going no where.  EMTALA and the federal cuts to hospitals with passage of ACA are not going anywhere.  The illegals that you referred to and the people that refuse to buy healthcare make for good talking points by a pundit or politician but the facts are that they are going no where either and they will always be covered by EMTALA which was passed by a republican congress in 1986.  Where is the savings?  How is the state paying the billions now?  Whose paying it and when will it stop? 

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234 - More semantics.  Some say there is no "tenure" in Georgia because it is not like New York or California.  I guess there are no taxes in Georgia either for the same reason.

This discussion got silly.

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser Where is the proof that the money will be saved? Illegals are not covered under Obamacare and will not be covered under Obamacare and will continue to receive their services in the ER. 

honested
honested

@The_Centrist 

I think I see our 'centrist' logic........if we can't use the terms and definitions as recognized on 'talk radio' we can't discuss the issue.

honested
honested

@td1234 @StraightNoChaser 

I don't believe in posting links (it seems childish and is unnecessary except for those too lazy to do the work of looking it up) but do a tiny bit of research and you will quickly find the basic economics that point to real savings.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 and we both know that the billions being spent is not just for illegals alone.  Come on now I give you your arguement that they are benefiting from some of the money but be realistic now.  Don't use the typical spin or fear tactic of illegals everywhere arguement for this.  In the state of Georgia where " sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners" as Dr. King bestowed upon your beautiful state in his speech, would not allow this.  We both know that if that many illegals were running around GA the first bill on Nathan Deals desk would not have dealth with anything but illegal aliens in this state if they are milking the system the way you say they are.

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser There is no proof that any ER money will be saved and there is proof that expanding Medicaid will cost the state billions with no way to increase revenue so we will be cutting roads, teachers and every other current service to pay for the insurance of people that refuse to pay for their own. 

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

Please note my comment above was directed to td1234 - NOT the partisan who ignores what doesn't fit his politics.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist just for the record the increased trips to the ER you insist on cutting and pasting about will be paid at a contracted rate not at a 100% self insured rate which is what is being paid now which = billions.  Next......

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist I stopped talking to you way back in the conversation when you were not able to make an arguement without cutting and pasting someone elses thoughts.  Besides didn't you take break your  toys and go home because you could not have your way? I will give you one more chance what is your solutions not someone elses? 

The_Centrist 2 hours ago

@StraightNoChaser-  No longer playing since you are a hard lined patisan ignoring facts. 

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 actually there is proof from the Congressional Budget Office on the savings to states based on just what I have been talking about.  It breaks down the whole medicaid savings and cost to states for every governor in the union.  Additionally.  I do believe that my job as a healthcare worker who has the inside scoop on what exactly Nathan Deal has done by turning down medicaid gives me an advantage over any proof that you have googled, read or watched on TV.  I see it first hand.  Basically, he screwed up and the long term effect will cost this states way more than what he lying about saving. 

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist it's her not his.  Of course I can understand why you would think I am a guy giving what the right thinks about smart women who can hold their own.  Not all of us are barefoot and pregnant. 

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@StraightNoChaser - Well, granted you are smart enough to understand I was talking about you being the partisan poster, but not smart enough to understand you have had your clock cleaned in this debate.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 here is a link to the billions of dollars the feds will be saving from states turning down medicaid.  Common sense would tell anyone that if the feds have stopped spending billions on the uninsured in a state the cost will be picked up by the state.  http://www.cbo.gov/publication/43472

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@The_Centrist so says you but your post state otherwise.  In fact all of your post state otherwise.  I asked you to post your own thoughts not something that you have cut and pasted from someone else and you were not capable of doing so.  This appears to be a trend with all of your post nothing original just cut, paste and spin.  No depth just an empty poster who is looking for atta boys from others just like you.  How about it Centrist? The offer is still out there, what is YOUR solution to covering the billions it will over time cost the state to cover the uninsured and mentally ill?  The feds have cut 289 billion from states for this purpose so how would you cover it? 

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser From the report: 


"

Why are the Projected Medicaid and CHIP Savings Stemming from the Supreme Court’s Decision Greater than the Projected Additional Costs of Subsidies Provided through the Exchanges?

Federal spending over the 2012–2022 period for Medicaid and CHIP is now projected to be $289 billion less than previously expected, whereas the estimated costs of tax credits and other subsidies for the purchase of health insurance through the exchanges (and related spending) have risen by $210 billion. Small changes in other components of the budget estimates account for the remaining $5 billion of the difference." 


So the Feds save $79 billion from states not expanding. This is the key part of the savings: 


"

  • For the average person who does not enroll in Medicaid as a result of the Court’s decision and becomes uninsured, federal spending will decline by roughly an estimated $6,000 in 2022.
  • For the average person who does not enroll in Medicaid as a result of the Court’s decision and enrolls in an exchange instead, estimated federal spending will rise by roughly $3,000 in 2022—the difference between estimated additional exchange subsidies of about $9,000 and estimated Medicaid savings of roughly $6,000."

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 savings for who?  If the feds will be spending 289 billion less on Medicaid who but the states will be picking up this cost for the uninsured?  The feds have cut this money to all states so who is going to pay it and what is Nathan Deals proposal to cover it?

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser There is no where is the report that says the states will be picking up the cost. You are making an assumption. 

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 You are kidding right?  The report does not have to spell out in layman terms who will be picking up the cost it should be obvious.  If the states and hospitals will not be getting 289 billion and the feds have washed their hands of it and will not be giving that extra money that they have been giving for years now  how am I making an assumption when there are still un-insured in states after the 289 billion dollar cuts in spending? It should not take a politician or report to help an informed voter to come the conclussion that states will have to pick up this cost.  The assumption is being made by the right that with the disapperance of the 289 billion the un-insured will also disappear which is not and will not happen. It is not an assumption when those type of cuts have a dirrect impact on the un-insured and hospitals. One thing that is not assumed is that four financially strapped hospitals have closed in the past two years in GA and the un-insured patients that were going to those hospitals are now burdening down another hospital.  My question to you is how many more financially strapped hospitals will there be now and what is the governors plan to deal with it?  I always come back to my bumper sticker logo "the right to life for the GOP stops in the delivery room". 

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser Nope, the report clearly states 


"roughly one-third will have income high enough to be eligible for exchange subsidies. In addition, those who become eligible for subsidies will have to pay a portion of the exchange premium themselves," 


The people will have to pick up their own cost by going to the exchange. If they are not eligible then they need to work more than 10 or 12 hours per week to become eligible for the exchange (if they want insurance). 


I will bet you right now that insurance premiums (which currently cover most the uninsured) will not come down when these 1/3 get their own coverage.  

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 check my previous post which addresses this.  They work but they do not make a liveable wage to qualify for the exchange so what do they do and who will pick up their cost?  This is not something I am making up this is reality, I see it on a daily basis.  The whole intent of Medicaid expansion is to cover the working poor because they were not covered by the other medicaid plan.  The 289 billion I am speaking of is about that particular group of demographics, the ones who work but still can't pay for insurance through the exchange because they do not qualify for vouchers and can't afford the premiums.   I hear what you are saying about working more but in reality that probably will not happen so in the mean time the cost will still be there.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

@td1234 - I'll let you continue debating the partisans who ignore facts and go with their politics.  Once I figure out who they are, I learn to ignore them instead of wasting my time.

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser You just gave yourself away with the "livable wage" statement that you are a progressive partisan. LOL


Now, what would Georgia's share of the questioned $289 billion be? $10 billion per year? After three years is up the state is responsible for 10% of the cost or $1 billion per year. Where is that money going to come from? If you say savings from the expansion then we know that is a bogus statement and not even the far left GPBI (maybe right) states that the state will not have a significant amount to pay. 


Where do we get the $1 billion per year from to pay for this expansion? We can not raise taxes because we will be capping the state income tax rate in November. Even if we ended all the special tax subsidies to business (which is not even close to $1 billion per year) then many of these businesses will move to states like NY that is promising 10 years tax free.


Your only other choice is to cut the budget in other areas. Education and Medicaid combined is more than 80% of our current budget so you must be saying lets take a billion per year out of Education. 



StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 from the poster who has no ideas of his own.  The pot calling the kettle black.  Go figure......

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234

The Custer report said expansion of Medicaid — a program jointly financed by the federal and state governments — would bring an estimated $40 billion of federal money into Georgia over the first decade of implementation "Study says Medicaid expansion would enrich state" ~~~~~Georgia Health News Feb 13, 2013

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 where did you get your data? Statements from your governor himself do not corroborate your $1 billion dollar a year statement. 

" Deal, though, has remained steadfast in his opposition to Medicaid expansion, citing an estimated $4.5 billion cost to the state over 10 years".  ~~~ Online Athens May 5, 2013, Georgia Health News Feb 13, 2013. That's far short of $1 billion dollars a year, you think?  At least I was honest enough to post the CBO link regardless of how you could use the data to spin to your way of thinking to support my belief on healthcare and I did not use a partisan website to do so.  You guys are tooo funny instead of debating the facts you are more interested in name calling. What's partisan about the CBO?   You might want to check out the story at the Georgia Health News website, after reading it I have come to the conclusion that Nathan Deal is not the smartest guy in the room.

td1234
td1234

@StraightNoChaser It is actually over 7 years since the first three are suppose to be free. 


That is still over $500 million per year the states share. Where is the money going to come from?