Glenn Richardson’s good-bye

Below is House Speaker Glenn Richardson’s statement of resignation. It is peculiarly absent of any acceptance of any responsibility. Nor is it the most graceful set of exit lines, but grace was never his strong point – passion was, and it ultimately did him in.

The key to the statement is Richardson’s Jan. 1 resignation date. One would have to interpret this as postponement any challenge to Mark Burkhalter, who now becomes the new speaker.

House rules give the speaker 120 days – four months – to respond to any petition from the GOP caucus for a new election. That would push the issue to the end of April, when the session is likely to be over, favors have been doled out, and alliances built. (But the deadline could give the Senate some leverage in the final days.)

At the state Capitol, Majority Leader Jerry Keen, who has been mentioned as a possible candidate for speaker, left his office following the conference call and was immediately mobbed by waiting reporters. He had little to say, describing the call as both personal and private.

But he sought to assure anyone listening that Republicans remained in control:

“We have a good leadership team and a very strong caucus….As far as doing our job, and our responsibility [for] state government, and we’ll continue to do that….State government and the state of Georgia is bigger than any one person…there are good people in place and we’re going to continue to be able to govern.”

And this just came in from Sadie Fields, leader of the Georgia Christian Alliance:

“Georgia has lost what could have been a great leader in Speaker Richardson due to his personal failings. I trust he will seek the help he needs to get his life on track for himself – and for his children.”

Here’s Richardson’s statement:

“Effective January 1, 2010, I will resign my position as Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives and as state Representative for the 19th District in Paulding County.

It has been an honor to serve the citizens of Paulding County as their Representative for 14 years and as Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives for the last five years. During this time, I have appreciated working with the members of the House and the people of Georgia to keep state government efficient and ensure a low tax burden for our fellow Georgians.

As Speaker, I have been well served by the entire staff of the House of Representatives, especially the staff in the Speaker’s Office. To each of them I offer my profound thanks for their tireless efforts. And to my many friends and supporters throughout the state, thank you for standing by me even in the most difficult times. My service would not have been possible without you.

I am confident that House Leadership will continue to lead the House and its members as they serve all Georgians to the best of their abilities.

I recently made public that I have suffered from depression for many years. I continue to seek treatment and have made progress in dealing with this disease. In making this public disclosure, it was my hope to raise awareness and encourage others who suffer from this disease to come forward and seek treatment. I fear that the media attention of this week has deflected this message and done harm to many people who suffer from this condition.

I am thankful for the opportunities my service afforded me to make Georgia’s future brighter. Though I will no longer be serving in elected office, my commitment to see a better tomorrow for our state remains. As always, I am confident that Georgia’s best days are still ahead.”

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18 comments Add your comment

blah

December 3rd, 2009
6:11 pm

A great day for Georgia! So long to a disgraceful scumbag!

Ga. Tax Payer

December 3rd, 2009
6:20 pm

They should treat him like any other employee who has been found to be unfit. Give him 10 minutes to collect his personal stuff, while supervised, take his credentials and escort him to the door.

Rhonda Atlanta

December 3rd, 2009
6:32 pm

My guess is that Jerry Keen has unclean hands also.

Let's get the real story

December 3rd, 2009
7:32 pm

This isn’t the story. The story is what is the job Sonny and the boys gave him, in exchange for stepping down from the 100k job that was the main source of his income?

Herb

December 3rd, 2009
8:09 pm

Maybe he can bunk in with Tiger Woods

Old Hippie

December 3rd, 2009
8:29 pm

Good riddance to a prime example of GOP hypocrisy. Who else in the GOP leadership knew about this and did not speak up?

It’s time for a special prosecutor to uncover all the facts.

Mike

December 3rd, 2009
9:41 pm

Milton County here we come!

JD in Marietta

December 3rd, 2009
11:06 pm

Take another bong hit Old Hippie. Dems arent exactly role models for clean living for ethical behavior either. Do I need to cite some examples for you or have you passed out yet?

Gerald

December 3rd, 2009
11:19 pm

@Let’s get the real story:

“This isn’t the story. The story is what is the job Sonny and the boys gave him, in exchange for stepping down from the 100k job that was the main source of his income?”

Oh please. All of us Mary Norwood voters know that ONLY black Atlanta mayors do that sort of thing. White politicians NEVER indulge in such behavior, and are ALWAYS immune to dishonesty, self-service, backroom deals, cronyism, influence-peddling, and handing out favors, ESPECIALLY in the south and PARTICULARLY in Georgia, and that SONNY PERDUE is the PRIME example. Right?

toot

December 3rd, 2009
11:40 pm

They’re all snakes. Keen is the king snake.

Gerald

December 4th, 2009
12:10 am

JD in Marietta:

“Dems arent exactly role models for clean living for ethical behavior either.”

This is the problem. Democrats never claim to be role models for clean living. It is people like Richardson who claim to be and get elected again and again by social conservatives. The sad part is that not only do people like Richardson often turn out to be frauds on the “religious moral values” thing, but they never even enact any of the social conservative agenda. Name one item on the “pro-life, pro-family” agenda that the GOP actually adopted under Richardson. (Don’t claim the gay marriage ban, because that was driven by the governor’s office as part of election year politics, and it never would have passed without the support of conservative Democrats in both the legislative session and the general election.)

It is just proof that people like Richardson are doing nothing but stealing money and raising false hopes of people who would be better off forgetting about public life and concentrating on the church (concentrating on doing things that the New Testament actually tells them to do, I know, a shocking, novel and completely radical concept) and allow the GOP to elect effective knowledgeable leaders that can actually run a state. I am not saying that they have to be repulsive low-lives like Rudy Giuliani, but then again Giuliani never claimed to be a family values type to begin with, where Richardson (and a bunch of these other frauds) did and turned out to be no better than the guy who went to a gay pride event wearing a dress and kicked his second (or was it third?) wife out of the mayor’s mansion.

jdcochran

December 4th, 2009
3:39 am

Why didn’t they just let him commit suicide and be done with it? One less political scumbag. Now if only the rest of his ilk would attempt suicide and succeed at it, our kakistocracy might evolve into democracy!

Old Dog

December 4th, 2009
7:00 am

The question is who else knew and by their silence should be brought down for complicity? Could it be because they were/are also knee deep in the corruption? Could the meetings between the GOP House leaders simply been to “get their stories straight” and take care of Richardson for his continued silence? Unfortunately for Keen, Burkhalter, etc., Richardson appears to quite unstable and that, coupled with his need to be the focus of attention, could, despite the coverup efforts, lead to him singing and bringing the little “den of thieves” down….couldn’t have happened to a nicer group……reap what you sow….

The Snark

December 4th, 2009
8:01 am

If you think richardson was corrupt, powermad and heavy-handed, then just wait till you see Speaker Keen. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Michelle

December 4th, 2009
8:27 am

It is amazing to me that all these gifts and monies that are given to our elected officials from companies they regulate are deemed ok if they just declare them in their financial reports (where no one really sees them). We are evolving politically where maybe at some point in our political future someone like Glen Richardson will declare and report the sex with a lobbyist and all will be well.

jr

December 4th, 2009
9:28 am

Gerald – you infered that Christians should be “concentrating on the church (concentrating on doing things that the New Testament actually tells them to do, I know, a shocking, novel and completely radical concept) and allow the GOP to elect effective knowledgeable leaders that can actually run a state.”

I hope that you are not serious and inferring that Christians should be treated as 2nd class citizens and not be able to seek office, express their political views, and participate in activities that govern our society…because that would be very intolerable. I hope you would actually read some comments from our founding fathers, who overwhelmingly sought God’s guidance in the creation and implementation of our laws, Constitution, etc..

This is about a man, who has stepped down from his political position due to the circumstances in his life. It is not the fault of any other citizens of Georgia and should not be used to keep Christians from participating in the political process. To place the blame on others for Speaker Richardson’s circumstances reveals your discrimanatory World view.

ieee

December 4th, 2009
1:27 pm

We know that Jerry Keen is immoral. Here is a post that contains some interesting facts that I recently posted on a different forum:

Ah, Jerry Keen, Georgia’s number 1 criminal legislator. The one who worked so hard to pass so many laws that he KNEW were illegal. One of Georgia’s criminal legislators who thought it was just fine to force Georgia families from homes that they owned, all for no legitimate reason. He MUST also have known that his laws would in fact put children in more danger than they were. All experts told him that at least.

Has anyone in the history of Georgia had more laws overturned than Criminal Keen? Has anyone written more worse-than-worthless and counterproductive laws? It’s hard to imagine.

If you need to understand what kind of “person” Criminal Keen is, all you have to do is look at his actions when he was trying to pass his “Sex Offender” laws. Is was quite apparent that he is a person that is nearly unhinged, an anti-reality zealot.

He just came right out and said that a major goal of his laws was to drive people listed on Sex Offender Registries out of Georgia. It’s hard to fathom that any decent legislator/leader/person could possibly have that as a goal. He was saying that he thinks people listed on the Registries are a real scourge and danger to society, so much so that they must be monitored every second. So, his “solution” to that problem is to push those people off onto other people? Move the problem somewhere else?

Is that how Criminal Keen solves all of his problems? By pushing them off onto someone else? Wow, that is real leadership. He calls himself a Christian too. Yeah, I don’t think so. Real leaders solve problems, they don’t push them onto other people. You won’t find any informed people who will say his laws solved any problem. Keen didn’t solve any problems but he created plenty.

And as if his first round of “Sex Offender” law stupidity was not enough, he came back around during a subsequent legislative session to add more. That was when he added his “bus stop” Banishment against people on the Registries. Did anyone read the opinion piece that he wrote for the Atlanta-Journal Constitution in support of that bit of stupidity? In it, he hysterically and theatrically described how without his law a very young child (believe he said 6 years old) would be forced to walk to his/her bus stop in the early morning darkness RIGHT PAST A SEX OFFENDER’S HOME!!!!!! (have to say that with the appropriate level of hysteria)

The big question I had about that was – does Keen really believe that is a problem or does he really think that Georgia citizens are so thoroughly stupid that they would read that and think “oh yeah, we need bus stop Banishment”? The reality was that anyone in their right mind was thinking “Who the F would allow a young child to walk to their bus stop alone and remain there unsupervised?” The stupidity of that whole law is just too difficult to comprehend. Oh, BTW, that wasn’t the only gem that Keen offered up in his opinion piece. You really ought to read it to get an idea what he’s about.

If Keen had any sense, he would have passed a law that would have required that parents/guardians supervise their children in transit and at bus stops. Now that is a law that would actually do something. Even I, as one of the great Unwashed who is listed on a Registry, did that. I didn’t even consider thinking that the nanny state was somehow going to be “protecting” my children and certainly not by such an idiotic method as moving all the “bad guys” away from my children’s bus stop. It’s stupefying.

The fact is, Georgia doesn’t need the kind of “leadership” that Criminal Keen inflicts. He is a disgrace certainly to Christians and Republicans (He is the EXACT kind of person who so polarizes people against those groups.). He is no less of a disgrace to American principles and decent people in general.

Jackson Corn

December 10th, 2009
3:04 pm

He is no scumbag, I am friends with this man, and he is going through a rough time, and needed to step down.
Everyone saying he is a scumbag, and needs to kill himself, you should look at what your saying and think about that for a while. I am 16 years old and friends with his son and that is an immature thing to say. I think that you all are the scumbags for saying something like that.