Bobby Franklin: Let’s do away with driver’s licenses

The Lone Ranger rides again.

State Rep. Bobby Franklin, R-Marietta, has discovered a way to end the fractious debate over whether illegal immigrants should be able to have driver’s licenses.

Or 12-year-olds, for that matter. Just do away with the troublesome documents.

loneranger

State Rep. Bobby Franklin, R-Marietta, in a 2008 photo mocking his colleagues’ observation that he’s often the “Lone Ranger” on issues championed by his bills. Elissa Eubanks, eeubanks@ajc.com

Sandra Parrish with AM750 and now 95.5FM News/Talk WSB talked to Franklin about his bill this morning. Listen to the conversation here.

Likewise, CBS Atlanta today gave some noon air time to the – let’s admit – unusual legislation. Video is now online, but here’s what’s posted about Franklin’s “Right to Travel Act:”

CBS Atlanta’s Rebekka Schramm asked Franklin, “How are we going to keep up with who’s who and who’s on the roads and who’s not supposed to be on the roads?”

“That’s a great question,” Franklin said. “And I would have to answer that with a question, ‘Why do you need to know who’s who?’”

“What about 12-14-year-olds who want to drive? What would stop them?” Schramm asked.

“Well, what’s stopping them now anyway?” Franklin answered.

Let us answer Franklin’s question right away: Millions of parents are stopping them, in the name of a law that’s unlikely to change anytime soon. Another roadblock: The constant fatalities, including this morning’s death of a “HERO” unit operator, that remind us that driving is serious business.

So it’s likely that we’ll continue to be burdened with driver’s licenses, despite the lawmaker’s contention that the right to burn unleaded dates back to King John. From Franklin’s HB 7:

In England in 1215, the right to travel was enshrined in Article 42 of Magna Carta: It shall be lawful to any person, for the future, to go out of our kingdom, and to return, safely and securely, by land or by water, saving his allegiance to us, unless it be in time of war, for some short space, for the common good of the kingdom: excepting prisoners and outlaws, according to the laws of the land, and of the people of the nation at war against us, and Merchants who shall be treated as it is said above.

Franklin has a concept of limited government that may sound strange to some. He has already introduced legislation demanding that state transactions be conducted in gold or silver. Franklin regularly attempts to define abortion as murder through legislation filed each year.

His answer to the debate over gay marriage? What business does the government have saying who should wed who? But that hasn’t made it into a bill. Not yet.

Addendum: Before the House adjourned today, the chamber took up the matter of the Senate’s override of Gov. Sonny Perdue’s veto of last year’s zero-based budgeting bill. House Speaker David Ralston sent the Senate’s veto message to a committee, where it will most certainly perish.

But state Rep. Bobby Franklin challenged the speaker’s ruling. The state constitution required that the House tackle the question of the veto immediately – on the floor. The vote upholding the speaker’s ruling was 164 to 1.

The Lone Ranger had struck yet again.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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251 comments Add your comment

Kinsi

January 31st, 2011
12:52 pm

Well, he’s consistent in his beliefs, I’ll give him that.

Gerry

January 31st, 2011
12:53 pm

He has a point. Nothing is stopping illegals from driving today. They do it anyway.

Give me a Break!

January 31st, 2011
12:57 pm

Sure we have a right to travel — but operating a motor vehicle isn’t a right, it’s a privilege. By this guy’s warped way of thinking, anybody should be able to fly a plane or drive a school bus or….
And people wonder why Georgia can be such a laughingstock. Wait til John Stewart or Colbert get hold of this! (Maybe that’s the whole idea for Franklin, getting attention!)

Dave

January 31st, 2011
1:07 pm

Scary, but he’s right about the gay marriage thing.

northern neighbor

January 31st, 2011
1:08 pm

There is a law that requires insurance on a vehicle. The vehicle owner being liable for the consequences. It is safe to assume that responsible car owners are keeping 14 year olds from driving.
Maybe we should get the state out of the business of issuing driver’s licenses and let insurance companies issue them. The insurance companies may do a better job of keeping unsafe drivers off the road.

Truth

January 31st, 2011
1:11 pm

And make the driving test in ENGLISH ONLY!!!!!! Not in every other language on earth. ENGLISH is what is spoken here in America.

Jeff Sexton

January 31st, 2011
1:12 pm

Mr. Galloway,

A Bobby Franklin bill that was prefiled two months ago is worthy of attention NOW, when we’ve got the likes of HB 87 already filed and the Big Brother Rx (Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Act) expected to be filed this week?

The Snark

January 31st, 2011
1:14 pm

I agree with Franklin. Who needs the welfare nanny state to tell us who can and can’t drive? Like those elite politicians in Atlanta know better than we do! Let the market decide! Plus, by laying off all those wasteful, inefficient, Union-sympathizing bureacrats at the DMV, we can cut our pension liabilities and afford more tax cuts!

[Sorry, too much Kool-Aid this morning.]

Wes

January 31st, 2011
1:14 pm

If this guy is always submitting unusual legislation that no one supports, then it’s a waste of time and taxpayer’s money.

Tom

January 31st, 2011
1:16 pm

AND WE HAVE IDIOTS LIKE THIS PASSING LAWS WE ARE TO OBEY?

rxdawg

January 31st, 2011
1:18 pm

give me a break – anyone CAN fly a plane (unless you mean a commercial jet) and if so, you are citing examples of jobs, not something that would be considered “freedom of movement”. What he argues makes sense, though it would make the road scarier. Why do we have these rules set up the way they are to get licenses? Does anyone think that a certain number of supervised hours behind the wheel make a teenager any safer when they aren’t supervised? Is there a big difference between a 15-1/2 year old and a 16 year old? 17 year old? I think the biggest problem we have is the arbitrary nature of our laws. Why is the voting age 18, but drinking age 21? We entrust the future of our nation to a group we as a state don’t even think is smart enough to responsibly drink? Come on…at least admit the guy has a point.

Les Nesman

January 31st, 2011
1:19 pm

Bobby Franklin is an idiot. Vote him out of office. He is wasting the time and money of the state of Georgia.

Anne

January 31st, 2011
1:22 pm

Who in the world voted this nut-job into office?
What a time and energy waster! I am betting he could not get, or hold a job, with this kind of lunitic thought process.

three jack

January 31st, 2011
1:22 pm

when is the burn your driver’s license protest scheduled?

hmmmmm

January 31st, 2011
1:25 pm

Interesting concept…although he failed to read the last part of the article 42 “according to the laws of the land”. He’s assuming there are no laws..

With regards to Marriage – Government has no business licensing a marriage. What Gov’t can do is license a legal partnership just like they do in civil courts for businesses and entities. A household can be an entity and one can register who is part of the entity. Let people’s religious beliefs and institutiones determine what a “marriage” is or isn’t, not the government.

jw

January 31st, 2011
1:27 pm

Talk about selling your soul to the devil for your 15 minutes of fame each year! To think his district puts up with these shenanigans is beyond belief!

john

January 31st, 2011
1:27 pm

Ahaa—come on folks. Its a joke. Its an extreme way to show it but he’s still correct.

Joel

January 31st, 2011
1:28 pm

What’s sad is that people actually vote this assclown into office.

WILLIAM

January 31st, 2011
1:29 pm

What a terrible idea, driving is a privileged, what do we do with those drivers who continually drink and drive, the ones who kill members of your family, sure they drive now anyway, but we have a way to track then, hopefully prosecute them. What do you do with all of those non-drivers who continually violate the laws, suspended license now gets you a trip to jail, pass the bill for no license and well just do what you want. A drivers license is no issue for law abiding people, for criminals , why not just give them another advantage or a way to get away with victimizing the public, don’t need license, why insurance then, let the law abiding once again pay for the crooks out there.. that man has bumped his head.

Michael

January 31st, 2011
1:30 pm

That “driving is a privilege” is just government brain washing. So, the government has granted us “the privilege” to borrow $20k to buy a car, then insure it for another grand per year, and then drive within its speed limits, with current stickers, with ad valorem taxed license plates, with our tag lights operating, and our seat belts on or else it will tax us $200 per violation.

It doesn’t make a real difference, but maybe we have a privilege to drive on government built roads.

peter

January 31st, 2011
1:31 pm

Typical Republican….Clown like the Governor, former governor, and all the rest that run this behind state of dumb A$$es.

AU Liberal in ATL

January 31st, 2011
1:33 pm

Who’s the biggest idiot, this moron or Paul Broun?

Michael

January 31st, 2011
1:34 pm

And I’m not doing anything but I hate that I am being tracked by my cellphone, the traffic camera, the downtown camera, the gas station camera, my IP address and my debit card swipes. Maybe I don’t want anyone to know that I’m not doing anything. So when are they going to put the tracking chip in my drivers license?

Toby Saunders

January 31st, 2011
1:35 pm

Civil libertarianism is moral but it is possible to take it too far: e.g. “you can go into whomever’s house you want whenever” or “no driver’s licences are needed” or “a business owner can prevent a particular racial group from using the business”. The reason driver’s licences are needed is because they are proof that we know how to drive; it’s a public safety issue, clearly… it is a self-defense mechanism for the public by the government (of & for the people).
On that gold & silver based economy note: that method of economy was what we had in the US before the Great Depression… that economic format is not complex enough to deal with the complex nature of modern economics & is bound to lead to demise. Granted, it may seem reasonable on a gut-level but modern economics is very brainy, i.e. we need complex systems to properly govern complex economies (instead of relying on simple old-fashioned formats which may make you feel ‘warm & fuzzy’ but which in the end are only that).
Finally, abortion is murder but fetuses don’t have fully developed central nervous systems: we make the moral choice of making the complex consciousness of the mother paramount to the lower consciousness of the fetus. Pigs are conscious like four year old children are: killing them for food should be illegal for the same reason killing fetuses or children for food should be.

prof

January 31st, 2011
1:35 pm

@northern neighbor, I think you might be on to something. Let the insurance companies issue the driver’s licenses! They should know best about who is and who is not a good driver. The state could regulate it, but get rid of the horrid DMV anyway. They are the epitome of gov’t waste and most of the employees are rude and uninterested in helping “customers” anyway. I’m sure the insurance companies, as businesses, would find the most economical and efficient way to license drivers.

Travis McGee

January 31st, 2011
1:35 pm

When Bobby Franklin opens his mouth with this nonsense, he should be embarrassed. But the people who voted him into office should wear a sack over their heads — too embarrassed to show their faces.

Alabama Communist

January 31st, 2011
1:35 pm

Poor Bobby! Jesus has not renewed his Driver Licence, and he wants payback!

ant banks

January 31st, 2011
1:37 pm

is bobby franklin the problem or the constituents who keep votin’ him into office? dude has been off kilter for some times now. when will his constituents realize and quit votin’ him in office before one of his dumb bills passes and then folks will be marryin’ dogs, cows or whoever wants to marry what.

Robert

January 31st, 2011
1:37 pm

Holy crap. Time to change my party affiliation. No wonder this state stays stuck in the dark ages.

Dabo

January 31st, 2011
1:38 pm

Just another Marietta fruitcake….

MotherIrish

January 31st, 2011
1:38 pm

Guess who I am not voting for the next time he comes up for election. I have just had it with him and his brainless ideas. Yes, the illegals do drive, so do those who have had DUI’s and teens with out licenses, but when some one hits me, I want to know who. When I go to travel, I need to have a photo id and this is the best resource really that we have. If I go to a foreign country, I need to have a DL to prove I can rent a car and also in the other 49 states that he does not represent. Get real Bobby. Your time is limited in my book.

Journalism is Dead

January 31st, 2011
1:38 pm

So much for being a journalist there Jim…thanks for reminding me why the AJC is full of big government liberal whinings and has no journalistic integrity. What happened to reporting the facts and letting the readers decide for themselves??…I guess the liberals (and moral cruasading republicans) feel the sheeple must be spoonfed.

Here’s a wake up call for you Jim…laws are for HONEST people…rules written on a piece of paper do not stop anyone from doing anything.

Travis McGee

January 31st, 2011
1:38 pm

Without intending to, Bobby Franklin and Paul Broun may disprove the Theory of Evolution.

Libertarian

January 31st, 2011
1:39 pm

I’m all for living free, but who quotes the Magna Carta in this country? He might as well have been quoting Hammurabi’s code when asked about breast-feeding in public.

“If a man gives his child to a nurse and the child dies in her hands, but the nurse, unbeknown to the father and mother, nurses another child, then they shall convict her of having nursed another child without the knowledge of the father and mother and her breasts shall be cut off.”

Hasn’t aged well, has it?

Staci

January 31st, 2011
1:40 pm

I support laws to promote safety. Guidelines indicating who is safe to drive: reasonable. Based on logical, reliable methods of course. On the topic of marriage I think its the same. Laws should indicate who may get married. These laws protect children from being abused in the name of ‘marriage’ for example. But once people are eligible to get married (based on being of age and mentally capable of making decisions about their own life) then the govt should stay out of it.

kevin

January 31st, 2011
1:42 pm

In related news, GA legislators are considering passing a new law, aptly called “The Bobby Franklin”, which will make it mandatory for Bobby Franklin to carry around a new ID card specifying that he is a complete idiot.

Come on Man

January 31st, 2011
1:43 pm

Please, please, please, vote this idiot out of office.

dtboy

January 31st, 2011
1:46 pm

There’s a right to mobility, in terms of walking, running, etc., but not a right to drive. That is a privilege. The former doesn’t involve hazards to others.

jw

January 31st, 2011
1:46 pm

To: Journalism is Dead

Your buddy Jim, that you are after, didn’t imply anything one way or another – he opened the gates for discussion – just like you wanted. No big government liberals bending him in funny positions, just a bunch of country folks that decided to post our decisions. (You said we should get that opportunity). He reported the facts – one of our finest is introducing legislation to do away with a driver’s license – that’s not “Jim’s” fault –

Here’s a wake up call for you Journalism is Dead – read the article next time – he did everything you wanted him to do – now, go wrap up some fish and spread your toxic ink somewhere else!

memyself

January 31st, 2011
1:48 pm

Just think of the countless real life problems in this manfool’s district that he could have immediate effect on IF HE EVEN CARED. Instead, he spends hours thinking about and drafting up political nonsense just to get his uglee picture posted and his name in the news.

People ought to rise up and demand a recall on this walnut!

Country

January 31st, 2011
1:48 pm

This is Auuuhhhmerrikkahh! If you don’t like it…you can GiiiitttOUT!

Al Osmann

January 31st, 2011
1:49 pm

I guess they have solved all of our pressing problems and have a lot of spare time on their hands. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

John Daly

January 31st, 2011
1:51 pm

What an a$$hat.

WHAAAAAT???

January 31st, 2011
1:51 pm

This guy is a joke of a politition.I’m totally against “Big Government” also,but come on!The people who voted this knucklehead into office need to be slapped and sterilized!!

MrHughes

January 31st, 2011
1:52 pm

Wow… So, glad I don’t live in Marietta. Say whatever you will about other legislators, whom one may not agree with politically. But, at least they take they jobs seriously. You should have a set of standards to determine who should and who should not operate a motor vehicle. You can easily kill yourself or someone else with a 3,000 pound car. That’s why driving is a privledge.

“The driving is a privledge” debate refers to a precendent set in English Common law where a gentleman lost control of his horse/carriage which ended up trampling and killing another man. If you want to engage in behaviors that are potentially a danger to others, then you have to ensure that folks actually know what they are doing and are responsible for the consquences of their actions. It’s not like you can hit the reset button and un-kill someone.

This would be great for criminals who are not in the system. Just give Bobby’s name and you’ll get off. He needs to have a couple felonies for his lack of judgement.

horse

January 31st, 2011
1:53 pm

Bobby Franklin bases all of his legislation on his Christian reconstructionist (aka Libertarian Theocrat) beliefs. This is just one of those that are popular with this crowd, borrowed from the “Patriot” militia movement.

light on policy

January 31st, 2011
1:53 pm

I would be interested to know if there is any empirical data that suggests the impact of this. If not,what does he propose would happen to the motor vehicle fatality rate if this was to happen? No system is perfect but “joking” when state revenues are down, unemployment is dismal and our education system, is bringing up the rear is the last thing we need to be doing.

Mike

January 31st, 2011
1:55 pm

Don’t you just love this state. They elected a crook for governor. There is another clown who wants to carry guns at the airport. You got more goobers suing the feds over health care which their own health care is provided by the feds. And now this moron with the no licenses. It is good to see these elected people do all they can except find a remedy why the state’s education system is at the bottom of the lists when compared to other states.

Kristopher

January 31st, 2011
1:56 pm

He’s an idiot. I wouldn’t vote for him simply because he’s wasting time bringing up stupid legislation. Glad he doesn’t represent me in the house.

Mike A.

January 31st, 2011
1:57 pm

For a second I though Cynthia McKinney was back, Instead it’s just some other knucklehead with a big mouth…