Friday, January 30, 2009

The Macon Plague

Since Wednesday, I have spent most of my time either in the bed or at the doctor's office. Now, Daryl is recovering from what I have dubbed the "Macon Plague." At first, we thought it was food poisoning and blamed a pack of peanut butter M&M's. Turns out, the candy was falsely accused, since this illness is clearly contagious. I'm better, and Daryl's healing. And, the world kept right on turning without us.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Join us for Breakfast

Next Tuesday, you are invited to come enjoy breakfast, hear from our Democratic legislators and the Rev. Joanna Adams at Georgia WIN List's Annual Legislative Breakfast. This is going to be a very special event. I hope that you will join us!

Please Join Us

2009 Annual Legislative Breakfast

WIN List-supported legislators and other members of the Georgia General Assembly will share their perspectives on what to expect from the 2009 Legislative Session.

Featured Speaker:

Rev. Dr. Joanna Adams

The pastor at Morningside Presbyterian Church and powerful advocate for social justice, Joanna was named by Georgia Trend magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential Georgians in 2009.


Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Coffee and conversation at 7:30 am
Program begins at 8:00 am

Central Presbyterian Church
(across from the Capitol)
201 Washington St., SW
Atlanta, GA 30303

Click here to RSVP and pay online: Guest - $40

Or reserve your place by calling Leslie at 770-489-6689 or by e-mail at
Click here for driving directions.

Support as a Host

Patron: $1000
Benefactor: $500

Host level contributions can be paid in monthly installments.

Help us spread the word!
Please share this invitation with 3 women you think might be interested in attending this event by clicking the FORWARD EMAIL link at the bottom of this page.

Paid for by Georgia's WIN List.
Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. Contributions to Georgia's WIN List are not deductible for federal income tax purposes.
Forward email

Georgia's WIN List P.O. Box 5037 770-489-6689 Douglasville GA 30154

Friday, January 23, 2009

Obama Stand Up for Women's Health: Lifts Global Gag Rule

Thanks to President Obama, the Bush legacy of the "Global Gag Rule" is now His-Story.

Democrats Lead Fight to Keep Nurses in Schools

Georgia House Democratic Caucus Pledges fight to keep Nurses in Schools

Children can't learn when they are sick and teachers can't teach when they are running a health clinic

Atlanta -- According to the Governor's FY 2009 amended budget proposal school nurses will soon become a thing of the past. The recommendations submitted by the Governor last week cut $30 million in state funds which would eliminate the school nurse program. The Georgia House Democratic Caucus leaders oppose this cut and have pledged to work to restore the program.

Democrats believe in promoting preventive medicine and supporting nurses in schools so children can focus on learning and avoid complications that arise when health problems go untreated. They also believe every family should have access to a doctor and every school should have a nurse.

"We have a growing number of working families without health insurance and some of those parents rely on school nurses to keep their children safe and healthy while they are in school." said Pat Gardner (D-Atlanta), Chairperson for Health and Human Services Policy Committee for the Georgia House Democratic Caucus.

Georgia House Democratic Caucus Education Policy Chair, Rep. Kathy Ashe (D-Atlanta) said, "We must fight for our children and their right to receive appropriate health care while they are in school. If children don't receive the care they need their medical issues could escalate. It's a short sighted approach that will eventually cost our state additional funds and more importantly, diminish our children's ability to do the job they go to school to accomplish - learning. I am asking our parents and teachers to express your concern about these cuts to your state representative and state senators. Email if you need assistance finding your elected representatives."

Removing school nurses is extremely short-sighted. Georgia House Democratic Leader, Rep. DuBose Porter (D-Dublin) added real life examples. "In Dublin, we have one nurse for four elementary schools. Numerous daily school-age related illnesses aside, our nurse manages diabetic children who must undergo daily blood sugar testing; she takes care of a child on a feeding tube, and has a student going through stage 4 cancer. The management of these health issues takes a trained professional." said Porter. "In one of the four schools alone there are 38 students on asthma inhalers, students who at times have had to be rushed to the hospital with acute asthma attacks. We should not balance the state's budget by cutting health care to sick children or making our teachers become health care providers."

Georgia House Democratic Caucus Chairman Calvin Smyre (D-Columbus) agreed and pointed out legal questions that may arise, regardless of safeguards designed to protect the school. "The governor should be asking, who will administer this care... the teachers? The liability on untrained school employees administering health care could easily become an issue. Teachers in Georgia schools now are not allowed to administer medications. Nurses in our schools give out over 5 million doses per year. There are approximately fifteen million annual visits to the office or school health room for illness, medication and injury in Georgia," said Smyre. "Children can't learn when they are sick and teachers can't teach when they are running a health clinic."

In conclusion Porter noted, "We are willing to fight to stop this cut that will directly damage our schools and our children, but it will take a great effort to get the message to this Governor. Now is the time for Georgians to engage in the political process. Times are changing and Georgians can no longer assume basic services will continue. Georgians must become involved in the process."

The Georgia House Democratic Caucus has an Email to handle issues that relate to the Governor's proposed cuts. To voice your concern email Together we can continue to protect our children's future.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What is There Left to Say?

This morning, I learned from my sister that my niece, who is a student at the University of Florida, had made a last minute trip to D.C. I think that there was a lot of that going on. During the last week, it is as if a giant magnet were at the Capitol, drawing us all there. Watching the ceremony today, it was so clearly a national day of celebration. We celebrated the peaceful transition of power, Obama's calm in the face of tremendous crises, the look on Sen. John Lewis' face when Obama greeted him on his way to his seat on the podium, and the sea of diverse humanity that stood in the freezing cold to welcome this new day. President Obama is fond of saying that it is not about him, and he is right. My favorite metaphor of the last several days was in his speech on Sunday at the Lincoln Memorial. It is not the stones of the monuments that gives him hope, it is what lies between- you and me. If we want things to be better, change is all about us and our choices. There is much work to be done, but there is, again, hope. I am so elated to have, for once, and event that glued millions of Americans to a television that was not an attack or a natural disaster. God bless you, President Obama. We are with you.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Alternative (Reality) School

I am stunned that Bibb County Public Schools will bow to the complaints of a few parents and offer an "alternative educational activity" for children whose parents do not want them to watch Obama's historic swearing in and inaugural address on Tuesday. Apparently, these parents argue that this is not "an educational activity." Given the singularly historic nature of the occasion, that ridiculous assertion hardly deserves a response, especially given the history at one of the schools where the complaints emerged, Carter Elementary. Earlier, Carter had a "Polar Express Day" that involved children dressing in pj's and watching the film. That activity generated no newspaper articles or complaints from parents about misuse of "valuable educational time" and no demands for an "alternative educational activity."

There is something wrong with allowing a few parents to require that the school system facilitate children missing what arguably marks the greatest cultural shift of our lifetime. To those who would argue that this is a "political event," I would remind them that Obama is our President now- all of us.

I am left with two questions:

1) Were any of the parents who complained black?

2) If the answer to that question is "no", as I suspect it is, then, the reality of what will happen here on Tuesday is that a few white children, whose parents chose for them, will opt out of history by exiting classrooms before the swearing in is broadcast to the rest. Are we really fine with that?

Friday, January 16, 2009

What Do the Heroes Have in Common?

A friend points out...

The professionals rescuing airline passengers yesterday have something in common:

They are all union members.

"Elephant Stampede!"

Last week, Democratic lawmakers in Georgia decided not to put forth a candidate for speaker in an effort to demonstrate their commitment to using the time in session to address the critical economic crisis we face as a state and a nation. Contrast that with the near riot in Tennessee when Democratic lawmakers maneuvered to elect the first Republican Speaker in four decades. He then joined Democrats to elect a Democratic legislator, a women, to the number two spot. Needless to say, his fellow Republicans were not amused. Check this out from Crooks and Liars:

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A First: Vitter Says No to a Women

Of the sixteen member of the committee considering whether to recommend Hillary Clinton's confirmation, Sen. Vitter was the only "no" vote.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

King Nut

Because deregulation worked so well for banking, and the FDA is so good at keeping us safe, Gov. Perdue wants prevent Georgians harmed by dangerous products from recovering damages from the Georgia makers provided the FDA has signed off on a product. This is the same agency that has handled the salmonella outbreaks so well, right? Even now, people are dying because of salmonella in King Nut Peanut butter. But, I get it. Protect business at all cost - even the cost of the lives of Georgians.

Who, I ask you, is the real King Nut? I think we know the answer to that. He also wants to go after "meritless" lawsuits. How about we go after meritless governance? Here's the King's statement on the issue:

This session, I will propose two pieces of legislation that will make Georgia more friendly to business. First, we will cement our position as a leader in the biotech industry by enacting laws that respect the role of the federal Food and Drug Administration as the regulator of the safety of drugs and medical devices.

As other states have decided, I believe that FDA approval should mean something … It certainly should imply protection from tort lawsuits. This legislation will say that companies with a significant presence in Georgia will not be subject to product liability claims within this state if the FDA approved the medical device, drug or the labeling along with it. The legislation will make Georgia an even more attractive environment for biotechnology companies.

Secondly, Georgia's courts are crowded with nuisance lawsuits, but unfortunately, they are often cheaper to settle than to litigate. Current law provides almost no deterrent for frivolous lawsuits and that must change.

I'm asking the General Assembly to pass another tort reform bill that will provide relief to individuals and companies wrongly sued. In short, if a claim is dismissed at the earliest possible stage, the litigant bringing the claim will be responsible for the prevailing party's attorneys' fees.

If the attorney fails to notify the client of this provision, that attorney could pay the award. Lastly, the bill will make sure that the costly discovery process will not begin until the legal merits of a complaint have been tested.

This will free up our courts to pursue justice in cases with merit, protect our existing businesses that provide jobs for Georgians and attract new investment. With the help of the General Assembly, we'll make plain that the threat of meritless litigation is not a viable business strategy in Georgia.

Monday, January 12, 2009

"Republicans Have No WIN List"

Sometimes you have to make your case; sometimes your opposition makes your case for you.

Today, in the AJC article about Karen Handel's run for governor, Millie Rogers, the president of the Georgia Federation of Republican Women made the case for Georgia's WIN List:

Millie Rogers, president of the Georgia Federation of Republican Women, thinks money is another reason. Republicans have no Win List, a group that provides seed cash to Democratic female candidates in Georgia. “Without money you don’t have a seat at the table,” Rogers said. Her group is exploring the idea of starting such a fund.

Supporting women running for office is not exactly a new idea to Georgia democrats. More than a decade ago, a group of forward-thinking women realized that it does take money to gain a seat at the table, and they did something about it. As a result of their efforts and generous donors, Georgia's WIN List is entering our 10th year, and during that decade has contributed tens of thousands of dollars to democratic women running for state level office in Georgia.

Full disclosure: as a board member and Vice Chair, I'm partial to Georgia's WIN List. I am proud of the work we do to encourage women to run and support them when they do. This cycle alone, we contributed more than 50K to women running for office in Georgia.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Millions for Macon

Macon (and Bibb County) is about to get nearly 4 million dollars to rehab blighted housing. This money comes courtesy of the first stimulus package and local leaders are excited, if not all together in agreement-what else is new-about the opportunity the money will bring. the City and the County are working together obtain and then spend this money. Most of the property that will be addressed lies within the city limits of Macon, which is also, lest we forget, also in Bibb County.

This is really good news, yet, at City Council this week, most of the time, and as a result most of the press coverage, was spend talking about the division of about 45K a year in hotel/motel taxes, only to have the matter again tabled, while this good news got very little attention. No wonder people question the capacity of their elected officials!

P.S.: I'm going to be mirroring this site with the new Tondee's site for a while until folks get used to the change.