Lawmaker: Under GOP health care bill, Georgia would be ‘significantly punished’

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U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan. AP/J. Scott Applewhite

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, R-Pooler, will be making the rounds at the state Capitol on Wednesday. He’s already put himself forward as a fan of the House Republican bid to replace the Affordable Care Act, and will probably make the case to state lawmakers this morning.

Some people will take some convincing. In a morning piece by Andy Miller of Georgia Health News, Gov. Nathan Deal reiterated his position as a potential supporter — but skeptical:

Deal, a Republican, summed up Georgia’s perspective on the proposed new health plan in a few words. “Our message to Congress is: We want to be treated fairly.”

Miller further explains the situation in these paragraphs:

State Sen. Chuck Hufstetler, a Rome Republican who is a member of Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle’s Health Care Reform Task Force,  said Tuesday that Georgia “would be significantly punished’’ in Medicaid funding under the American Health Care Act.

 

Hufstetler cited Georgia’s conservative per-enrollee spending, plus the fact that the state has not expanded Medicaid. Under the current GOP bill, he said, “Republicans would be rewarding the states that spent the most money on Medicaid.”



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We don’t generally publish state Capitol announcements verbatim, but consider this one:

Gov. Nathan Deal, in conjunction with the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD), today presented 24 businesses with GLOBE (Georgia Launching Opportunities By Exporting) Awards at the 2017 Go Global reception. This state-led awards program recognizes companies that entered into a new international market in the previous year.

It’s just one paragraph, but it underlines the vast difference between Georgia’s economic development strategy and the protectionist approach that President Donald Trump has espoused.

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Rumors are floating around the state Senate of a proposed change to chamber rules that would require any senator holding a position of president pro tem, majority leader or majority whip to resign that leadership spot. Clearly, the effort – which has yet to surface publicly – is aimed at Senate President pro tem David Shafer, R-Duluth, who is contemplating a run for lieutenant governor. The change would require approval by a two-thirds majority, so the bar is high.

In case you’re wondering, we’re told that there is no House rule that would require state Rep. David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, to resign as speaker should he decide to run for governor.

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There’s a new attempt brewing to define sand dunes – and potentially give developers more leeway to build on the Georgia’s coasts.

A bill introduced by state Rep. Jesse Petrea, R-Savannah, cleared the Georgia House this month without controversial changes after environmentalists, coastal residents and others joined forces to savage language that would have said mounds of sand “stabilized by indigenous vegetative” aren’t dunes.

A new version of House Bill 271 floating around the statehouse said mounds of sand covered by sea oats or other “pioneer vegetation” are, indeed, dunes. But sand mounds covered with planted and maintained landscaping and separated from the high-water mark by fences or other manmade structures are not. You can get your copy here.

Some environmental groups say this is not the “grand compromise” that it would seem – and have pledged to fight it.

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The conservative anti-tax Club for Growth has endorsed former Johns Creek Councilmember Bob Gray in Georgia’s Sixth District race to replace former Rep. Tom Price.

The super PAC’s president, David McIntosh, called Gray a “proven economic conservative” who will fight for lower taxes and less spending.

“The Club for Growth PAC is proud to endorse a candidate who has successfully put free-market principles into practice and will fight hard for them in the U.S. House,” McIntosh said.

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The latest sign that Washington Democrats are rallying around the candidacy of Jon Ossoff – one of five Democrats in the race for Georgia’s Sixth District:

 

All four of Georgia’s Democratic congressmen are listed as co-hosts of the event, being held at DNC headquarters on Thursday. Virtually every U.S. House Democratic leader, including Nancy Pelosi, is also listed on the host committee.

It looks like Ossoff has another event in the nation’s Capital today — this one a reception hosted by the Democratic fundraising group ActBlue. The event’s Facebook invite lists a handful of lobbyists as cohosts, as well as several former Democratic staffers and a top aide to MoveOn.org.


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