You are Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and have just won re-election by an impressive margin.
Your GOP cushion in the Senate has increased by one, to 35 members out of 56. So how do you celebrate?
By fighting a palace coup.
We understand that ranking Republican members of the Senate – including President pro tem Tommie Williams of Lyons, Majority Leader Chip Rogers of Woodstock, and Cecil Staton of Macon – have served notice on Cagle that they will attempt to curb his single-handed power to control that chamber’s affairs.
In other words, they want to render him a figurehead a la Mark Taylor.
Details about motivation for the move are still lacking. The issue will be raised among senators at a Friday caucus meeting that will introduce newly elected senators to their colleagues. Cagle will not be permitted to attend.
But in one-on-one conversations, look for Cagle to argue that stripping him of his powers would reduce the Senate to a third wheel in the legislative process that begins in January.
Gov. Nathan Deal and House Speaker David Ralston won’t have the patience to negotiate with a Senate committee, he’s sure to say. They’ll simply take advantage of the resulting chaos.
The argument from the other side: What use is there in a committee chairmanship if all a lobbyist needs to do to pass a bill is to knock on Cagle’s door?