Your morning jolt: Patient in Shepherd stem cell experiment is an Alabama nursing student

Six months ago, scientists announced that a partially paralyzed patient at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta had become the first to be infused with a drug made from human embryonic stem cells.

The Washington Post this morning identifies the patient:

Recently, rumors began circulating in Internet chat rooms that details about the closely guarded experiment were finally about to be revealed.

Now, a 21-year-old Alabama nursing student who was paralyzed from the chest down in a car crash in September has come forward to identify himself as the volunteer.

“I was the first patient,” Timothy J. Atchison of Chatom, Ala., said in a telephone interview with The Washington Post on Wednesday evening. “I’m doing well.”

Atchison, known as T.J. to his family and friends, was a student at the University of South Alabama College of Nursing when his car crashed on Sept. 25, which, Atchison noted, was the birthday of Christopher Reeve, the actor who suffered a devastating spinal cord injury.

After undergoing emergency treatment at a regional medical center, Atchison was transferred to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, which specializes in spinal cord injuries, for rehabilitation. It was there that he agreed to let doctors inject him with the drug — more than 2 million cells made from stem cells into his spine, he said.

***
The liberal group Think Progress is passing around this video of U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, R-Athens, advocating the defunding of Planned Parent and NPR:

Says Broun:

“[T]he thing is, we don’t have constitutional authority under the original intent of the Constitution to fund Planned Parenthood or NPR — a lot of things that we’re doing. In fact, Article 1, Section 8 lists or enumerates the powers of Congress to act, and it’s only 18.

“We should be dealing with national security, national defense, foreign affairs and very little else. We’ve got to find bridges to send those powers back to the states and people as our Founding Fathers meant for them to.”

***
State Senate Vincent Fort and other Atlanta lawmakers will hold a 10 a.m. press conference at the state Capitol today, warning that current legislation that would give Gov. Nathan Deal the power to replace Atlanta Board of Education members would fall under the auspices of the Voting Rights Act – and thus would require U.S. Justice Department approval.

The governor would be empowered to replace the school board members only if the Atlanta Public School system loses its accreditation. It has been placed on probation by its accreditation agency.

***
House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams and other Democrats are calling on the Legislature to pass a measure that would allow 20 more weeks of benefits to flow to long-term unemployed in Georgia.

“It is unconscionable to me that we would not make a small fix in state law that will provide $175 million to Georgians currently receiving unemployment benefits,” Abrams said. “These are citizens who have worked long and hard and who have paid into the unemployment benefits system.”

***
If you’re a lawmaker, lobbyist or accountant, you’ll need to read this fiscal note that accompanies the newest version of the Republican tax reform.

An earlier version would have raised income taxes for those earning between $20,000 and $180,000 a year. This version does not – and in fact would punch a $220 million hole in the budget:

House Majority Leader Larry O’Neal, R-Bonaire, said the loss of revenue to the state is not without risk. But he said the plan, which he described as a state-level re-creation of President Ronald Reagan’s cut to the federal tax rate in 1981, would put the state in the forefront of the economic recovery.

“It’s an incredible balance, but the goose that laid the golden egg in America is free markets and capitalism,” he said. “The first [goal] is to make Georgia the most attractive place for the entrepreneurial spirit.”

One sharp reader reminded us that David Stockman, Reagan’s budget magician, later made this admission:

“I mean, Kemp-Roth [Reagan's 1981 tax cut] was always a Trojan horse to bring down the top rate…. It’s kind of hard to sell ‘trickle down.’ So the supply-side formula was the only way to get a tax policy that was really ‘trickle down.’ Supply-side is ‘trickle-down’ theory.”

***
The Georgia Republican party will hold its district conventions next Saturday, April 16.

Debbie Dooley of Tea Party Patriots says attendees of the 7th District convention – that’s mostly Gwinnett County – will be presented with a resolution that endorses the concept of a Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle stripped of his powers.

Here’s a taste:

….WHEREAS, for the past years the Lieutenant Governor of the State of Georgia has been performing duties of a legislative nature (appointing committee chairmen, assigning legislation to committees, etc.) that clearly violate the Constitution of the State of Georgia (the Executive branch is also legislating); and

WHEREAS, this out of balance situation is the “root cause” of many of the symptoms the legislature has experienced and is experiencing by allowing legislation to bypass duly constituted committees which enable special interests to legislate via the Lieutenant Governor and usurp representative government between each citizen and their State Senator…..

***
Today’s AJC Politifact takes a look at President Barack Obama’s promise to create a home foreclosure prevention fund.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

37 comments Add your comment

Ric

April 7th, 2011
8:57 am

I don’t say this much, but Paul Broun is right, for once.
I don’t know why liberal groups would be passing that video around to make conservatives look bad. I could think of plenty of more outrageous things he’s said.

jd

April 7th, 2011
8:59 am

Lessee, we say we are giving tax breaks so small businesses will thrive (but don’t talk about the fact huge chunks are going to mega-billion dollar companies that have left the state), but at the same time, say we can’t afford education for the middle class and unemployment for those seeking work because that makes the middle class salaries non-competitive (at 6.10 per hour)… Makes perfect sense. Robbing poor peter so rich paul can succeed. Sigh — at least peter can look forward to heaven, paul won’t have it so easy.

Aquagirl

April 7th, 2011
9:09 am

So—the government shouldn’t be involved in reproductive matters, Mr. Broun? Then quit pushing anti-abortion legislation. You can’t have it both ways. Unless you’re a Republican, then hypocrisy is a prized attribute among your voters.

ByteMe

April 7th, 2011
9:17 am

Looks like the Tea Party is taking sides in the intramural scrimmage going on within the Republican Party. Weren’t they supposed to be not affiliated with any party? How does this resolution that chooses sides in a war within the Republican caucus in the Georgia Legislature supposed to move us closer to the intents of the US Constitution?

The emperor has no clothes.

ByteMe

April 7th, 2011
9:18 am

“These are citizens who have worked long and hard and who have paid into the unemployment benefits system.”

Employers pay unemployment taxes, not employees. Stacey should know that.

DannyX

April 7th, 2011
9:22 am

From Paul Broun’s own Congressional blog 9/15/09… http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/politics/58843-stop-legislation-to-repeal-doma-rep-paul-broun

“”Today, I was extremely disappointed to see my liberal colleagues introduce legislation to repeal the bipartisan Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). DOMA was signed into law 13 years ago by a Democratic President because lawmakers began to see the assault on traditional marriage. Over a decade later, traditional marriage – a principle tenant in our Judeo-Christian values – is under assault more than ever before.”"

Where exactly does the Constitution say anything about “traditional marriage?” Marriage is a state issue.

Broun said “I believe in freedom .” Sure he does.

Southside Shawty

April 7th, 2011
9:25 am

If Broun is so enamored with the Constitution, where was the Declaration of War issued by Congress for Iraq and Afghanistan?

Capi

April 7th, 2011
9:34 am

Enter your comments here

TrishaDishaWarEagle

April 7th, 2011
9:41 am

Vincent Fort, Democrat race pimp, thinks the voting rights act protects black elected officials who have failed at their job, from being replaced? Yes, another minority who wants the law to protect minority malfeasance in government.

TrishaDishaWarEagle

April 7th, 2011
9:42 am

@shawty, and where was the declaration of war for hussein-o in libya.

Jeff

April 7th, 2011
9:44 am

So…what is “fiscally conservative” about a plan that puts the state deeper in the hole? I’m glad these guys aren’t running my business, but I’m VERY concerned that they’re running my state government!

Get a clue, guys. Stop pandering for votes long enough to make some responsible decisions. Georgia already has among the lowest state tax burdens in the nation, which may be why we also rank near the bottom in education and health, and among the top in rates of incarceration, unemployment, teen pregnancy and other indicators of poor quality of life. If the answer to everything is “the free market”, then Georgia’s already low tax rate and extremely pro-business climate should have already made us the top state in the nation. Please act responsibly and legislate more wisely.

Just Wait

April 7th, 2011
9:54 am

Vincent Fort could find fault in anything. He is like a hurricane, swells up, blows hard and dissipates. Then the cycle begins again.

John K

April 7th, 2011
9:55 am

So Broun, what is “traditional marriage” and how it is being assaulted? By things like Newt’s uber-Patriotism?

Raquel Morris

April 7th, 2011
10:02 am

It’s killing me to say this, but I agree with TrishaDisha on Vincent Fort. Section 5 was not designed to allow black elected officials to educationally abuse our children.

Joe Mama

April 7th, 2011
10:04 am

TDWE — “@shawty, and where was the declaration of war for hussein-o in libya.”

Presidents can send our military overseas on *short* missions without Congressional approval.

That being said, I’m a veteran and I’m also opposed to our involvement in Libya. But — so far — he’s not overstepping his Constitutional bounds. Get back to me in a few weeks on this.

Southside Shawty

April 7th, 2011
10:07 am

TrishadaDisha- Broun is the one saying the Constitution should be strictly adhered to (for his own self-serving purposes of course).

The Centrist

April 7th, 2011
10:22 am

School board members are elected to office, so why shouldn’t Fort ask the Federal Department of Justice to review and approve of the Deal plan that specifically targets Atlanta? Wouldn’t it be non-partisan and without undue perceptions if the law gave the Governor the authority to remove school board members anywhere in the State? Just asking.

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
10:24 am

Southside Shawty:

“TrishadaDisha- Broun is the one saying the Constitution should be strictly adhered to (for his own self-serving purposes of course).”

You’re the one who posed the question. Where’s Hussein’s Declaration of War against Libya?

Joe Mama

April 7th, 2011
10:30 am

Lat Man Standing — “You’re the one who posed the question. Where’s Hussein’s Declaration of War against Libya?”

He doesn’t have to have one for 90 days.

The War Powers Resolution permits Presidents to send troops on military actions for 60 days, plus a 30 day extraction period, without Congressional approval. Congress has to be *notified,* but Congressional approval isn’t required as long as it’s in-and-out within 90 days.

That being said, I’m against us being there, but so far, he’s not out of bounds. Get back to me in mid-June; if we’re still there without Congressional approval, then we might be in agreement.

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
10:33 am

The Centrist:

“School board members are elected to office, so why shouldn’t Fort ask the Federal Department of Justice to review and approve of the Deal plan that specifically targets Atlanta?”

I would tend to agree with you. Let them continue on their chosen path to oblivion. The citizens have elected them and the children will pay for their parents’ mistake. Seems fair, doesn’t it?

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
10:35 am

Joe Mama:

“He doesn’t have to have one for 90 days.”

I’m aware of that. My point is that GWB didn’t need the Declaration of War either. You can’t have both ways.

The Centrist

April 7th, 2011
10:38 am

Broun is really saying lets get rid of Planned Parenthood so that illegal immigrants and those other “minorities,” who already have higher birth rates, can have even more babies who will be guaranteed to have health problems, and let taxpayers foot the bill. And, it sure looks like he feels that anyone that listens at times to the 20-hours of daily classical and modern instrumental music on NPR are intellectual elites.

Wondering

April 7th, 2011
10:38 am

Just as companies don’t pay their own income taxes (its their customers that do) companies also don’t pay unemployement taxes. Those same funds come from the customers. When dealing wiht unemployment taxes, they just goes into the calculations as a burden that is applied to the cost of labor. Thus raising unemployment taxes impacts labor by making it more expensive and customers who actually pay all the bills.

As for Paul Broun, just remember that a nut is not always a fruit, and as Vincent Fort shows, no single party can claim all of them. That is why both parties need the influence of the Tea Party. Fiscal responsibility and logical thinking should be attributes for both parties.

ByteMe

April 7th, 2011
10:39 am

My point is that GWB didn’t need the Declaration of War either. You can’t have both ways.

We got out of Iraq and Afghanistan in 90 days? Really??

You’re trying for equivalency that doesn’t exist.

The Centrist

April 7th, 2011
10:59 am

We live in a State where education is ranked 45th in the US, which puts it competition with most Third World countries, has never been out of oblivion. So why didn’t the Deal administration ask for a law that would identify the specific circumstances that would allow him to replace any school board member in the State?

Aquagirl

April 7th, 2011
11:00 am

“Fiscal responsibility and logical thinking should be attributes for both parties.”

Of course they should. So what’s the Tea Party have to do with that?

Joe Mama

April 7th, 2011
11:03 am

Last Man Standing — “I’m aware of that. My point is that GWB didn’t need the Declaration of War either.”

For missions lasting >90 days, yes, he does.

It was wrong when Clinton did it in 1995. And it was wrong when Bush did it in 2003.

And if we’re still there at the end of June, it will be wrong when Obama did it in 2011.

“You can’t have both ways.”

I’m not the one trying to have it both ways. In-and-out in 90 days, or else get Congressional approval. Simple as that.

TrishaDishaWarEagle

April 7th, 2011
11:27 am

apples and oranges is liberals claiming constitutional intent vs the war powers act.

And Deal targeted APS, because, like clayton county(I wonder what race the majority is there?), APS are on the path to losing their accreditation.

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
11:35 am

Joe Mama & ByteMe:

I guess I was mistaken. Congress funded both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. I guess they just go ahead and fund wars they haven’t approved.

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
11:36 am

Joe Mama and ByteMe:

BTW, there was no Declaration of War in Korea or Vietnam either.

ByteMe

April 7th, 2011
11:43 am

LMS: you are correct, there have been NO declarations of war since WWII.

Doesn’t make it right or constitutional. And Congress is filled with wimps who want to have it both ways by not having to explicitly declare war while still allowing our government to make war. Jefferson requested that Congress declare war on the Barbary pirates (and they did).

And the Tea Party is not heckling their Congresscritters about that in public meetings. Wonder why?

Joe Mama

April 7th, 2011
12:00 pm

TDWE — “apples and oranges is liberals claiming constitutional intent vs the war powers act.”

This liberal is a diabled veteran, ma’am. I’ve *paid* for my right to talk about things like the War Powers Resolution. How about you?

Last Man Standing — “I guess I was mistaken. Congress funded both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. I guess they just go ahead and fund wars they haven’t approved.”

Yeah, that’s the same argument President Clinton used in 1995. He didn’t get very far with it, either. I am pretty sure that you don’t want to find yourself arguing Clinton’s position, so perhaps you’d like to try again instead.

“BTW, there was no Declaration of War in Korea or Vietnam either.”

Yes. And that would make them wrong as well. Either face up to what the Constitution says or don’t. But if you’re not going to walk the walk, then don’t talk the talk.

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
12:16 pm

Joe Mama:

I apparently am not communicating well this morning.

Any war the U.S. enteres should be declared by Congress. So-called “Police Actions” are, in fact, wars. ByteMe has it right: “Doesn’t make it right or constitutional. And Congress is filled with wimps who want to have it both ways by not having to explicitly declare war while still allowing our government to make war. “

Joe Mama

April 7th, 2011
12:25 pm

Last Man Standing — “I apparently am not communicating well this morning.”

S’all right. We can disagree without being disagreeable. :)

“Any war the U.S. enteres should be declared by Congress.”

I agree. And that applies to Vietnam, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan and on and on IMO. If we are not out of Libya by mid-June, and if we do not have Congressional authorization by then, I will be most hacked off at President Obama. And yes, I voted for him.

“So-called “Police Actions” are, in fact, wars. ByteMe has it right: “Doesn’t make it right or constitutional.”

On this point, sir, we are in agreement.

“And Congress is filled with wimps who want to have it both ways by not having to explicitly declare war while still allowing our government to make war.”

I suspect you are right.

As a disabled veteran, I am keenly aware of who is and isn’t my friend in Congress. I think there’s a very high standard that needs to apply before we send troops anywhere. And I think this notion of it’s-a-war-but-we-won’t-really-declare-it is a load of bull. If you’re going to ask me or my brothers and sisters in arms to go risk getting shot at or blown up, you’d better have a dadgum good reason and the stones to go on record and vote for it in Congress. Cut out this half-stepping crap of funding undeclared wars.

As my ROTC sergeant told us in high school: ‘I was in ‘Nam. They say that ‘Nam wasn’t a war, but I got news for ya. Anytime you’re gettin’ shot at, and you’re encouraged to shoot *back* — that’s a war.’

Last Man Standing

April 7th, 2011
2:44 pm

Joe Mama:

“As my ROTC sergeant told us in high school: ‘I was in ‘Nam. They say that ‘Nam wasn’t a war, but I got news for ya. Anytime you’re gettin’ shot at, and you’re encouraged to shoot *back* — that’s a war.’

LOL, he was right, and that is exactly the way I felt about it! Anytime anyone is trying to kill you and you’re trying to kill them, it is a war. As far as I am concerned, when the first two shots are exchanged, the war has begun.

I’m sorry for your disability and hope all goes well for you.

Eli

April 7th, 2011
10:01 pm

The last item in Article 1 Section 8 (The Necessary and Proper Clause) states the following: To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.

“All other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the [US].” Wow…that is a power statement. Broun and his untrained “constitutional scholars” never bring up this clause written by the “founding fathers” or whatever you want to call them. Furthermore, they never bring up the Preamble…which sets the stage as to what ends our government is to seek as well as the embodied of popular sovereignty.

I don’t care if Broun carries around a pocket constitution. If you do not read it nor study the document it is worthless. Broun is just like all his buddies in DC, with that lifeless 1000 yard stare of his, that will pick and choose that which they agree with in the constitution and wipe their @sses with the rest.

Planned Parenthood and NPR and PBS and the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Science Foundation, etc all need funding. It is both necessary and proper for Congress to fund these programs. The people want them. Scientists and educators need them.