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Precious Moments

10 April 2008
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Here some more of those precious moments when we're reminded that lawmakers say the darnedest things...

We've got a few fun quotes from our elected officials from last year yet that we haven't yet posted, and several that have been uttered so far in 2008. Below are these analogies, puns, metaphors, and other unique statements and actions produced by our legislators.

First, the Remainder of the Quotes from 2007

From the Congress:

During discussion about a bill making changes to mining royalties and costs of purhasing land for mining (HR 2262) U.S. Representative Nick Rahall from West Virginia said "At $2.50 an acre, these valuable Federal lands are being transferred out of public ownership for fast-food hamburger prices."

Commenting on the energy bill HR 6, U.S. Representative George Radanovich of California quipped "The static electricity created by my shoes rubbing across this carpet creates more energy than the [...] energy bill."

Comparing the total dollar amount of the earmarks in the consolidated spending bill for 2007 (HR 2764) to the amount of the earmarks two years before, U.S. Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia stated that the 2007 total was 43 percent lower, commenting that "That ain't chicken feed."

From Florida:

Following a vote to adopt a constitutional amendment on homestead, State Senator Alex Villalobos bluntly stated that his chamber's plan was "bull[$#!*]" because it "screws" south Florida seniors.

Source: "Homestead Amendment Squeaks Through Florida Senate" by the Miami Herald on October 18, 2007

Below, the 2008 Precious Moments so Far:

From Tennessee/Georgia:

The Georgia legislature this year considered legislation to assess the feasibility of challenging the border location between Georgia and Tennessee, which is the 35fth parallel. Georgia claims that a marker was incorrectly placed to mark the border in 1818 and that the border should be a mile north of its marked location. This would give drought-stricken Georgia access to water in the Tennessee River.

"[My constituents] don't think this is an appropriate action for the Georgia legislature to take, even if it is in jest." -Tennessee State Senator Andy Berke of Chattanooga

"The boundary of the state is the boundary of the state and can only be changed by acts of the Tennessee and Georgia legislatures and of the U.S. Congress. It cannot be changed by a mathematician with a faulty compass." -Georgia State Senator David Shafer of Duluth

"Certainly this puts us in a difficult position." Georgia Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle

From Georgia:

The Georgia Senate unanimously approved a resolution to move the marked border between Georgia and Tennessee a mile north, but not before breaking into a rendition of "This Land is My Land" on the Senate floor during debate.

Source: "Ga.'s Quest to Move Tenn. Border Advances" by the Atlanta Journal Constitution on February 20, 2008

From South Carolina:

"That's like trying to get a cheeseburger classified as a health food to get it on the school lunch menus." -State Representative Paul Agnew of Abbeville on a committee vote to define "nuclear energy" as "renewable energy."

Source: "Schmoozing: Where and When Lawmakers Can Eat and Drink for Free Today" by The State on January 30, 2008

From the Congress:

"It's like you're opposed to stealing but not quite sure that bank robbery would qualify." -U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts discussing Attorney General Mukasey's refusal to say that he believes waterboarding is illegal.

Source: "Attorney General Dances Around Waterboarding Issue" by CNN on January 30, 2008

From South Carolina:

"If you can take a shot on the battlefield, you ought to be able to take a shot in a bar." -State Representative Fletcher Smith of Greenville on a bill to allow military personnel aged 18-20 to drink alcoholic beverages.

From Florida:

"I'm sorry if I've taken a dollar that you would have otherwise stuck in someone's garter." -State Representative Rick Kriseman of St. Petersburg, on a bill to place a one dollar admittance tax on strip clubs. The tax would be used to increase the Medicaid monthly stipend for nursing home residents from $35 to $70.

From Indiana:

"Gaming in this state is the crack cocaine of public policy. We started and we can't get enough." -State House Minority Leader Brian Bosman of Indianapolis

Source: "Debate Over Expanded Gambling Never-Ending in Legislature" by the Indianapolis Star Tribune on February 11, 2008

From South Dakota:

"It is only a matter of time before somebody is eaten in South Dakota." -State Representative Betty Olson of Prairie City on a bill to label mountain lions found outside the Black Hills as varmints, which would allow people with predator or varmint licenses to shoot them.

Source: "Mountain Lion Bill is Rejected" by the Sioux Falls Argus Leader on February 12, 2008

From West Virginia:

On passage of a bill to prevent ATV riders on paved roads, State Senator Walt Helmick pointed out that "There's not as many of those joyriders as there once were. If you look at the obituaries, you can see their numbers are decreasing somewhat."

Source: The Register Herald, February 26, 2008

From New Hampshire:

"People doing dumb things have to be held accountable." -State Representative Dennis Abbott of Rockingham, chairman of the New Hampshire House's Fish and Game Committee, on a proposal to require hikers to pay for their rescue operations if they are found negligent.

From Georgia:

"This bill is the greatest no-brainer since the creation of the Earth. If you are like me, if you are tired of rearranging the deck chairs of the Titanic when it come to education [...] then this bill is for you." -State Representative Ed Lindsay of Atlanta on a bill to let school districts decide whether to stick with the current funding formula or develop a plan that diverges from the state mandates.

From Georgia:

"If you're like most folks, and particularly those of us in the General Assembly, you're going to drink that sucker." -State Representative Allen Peake of Macon jokingly discussing the decision between finishing a bottle of wine at a restaurant or wasting it. The Georgia legislature passed a bill allowing restaurants to reseal the bottle and place it in a sealed bag so customers could put it in their trunk, glove compartment, or cargo area and take it home without violating open container laws.

Related tags: blog, California, Congress, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, New-Hampshire, precious-moments, quips, South-Carolina, South-Dakota, Tennessee, West-Virginia

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