Ladies and gentlemen, the Political Insider and the rest of the AJC family thank you for your kind attention this year. A vacation now looms, and is likely to stretch until after Christmas. And then on to Iowa. We’re shutting down commenting on this blog until I return.
In the meantime, in the spirit of the season, we offer this Monday news release:
Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary W. Black has granted a special 24-hour permit waiving the routine identification and other health requirements for nine flying reindeer slated to visit Georgia on the evening of December 24 into the early morning hours of December 25.
The permit application was filed this week by a North Pole toymaker who signed the paperwork “S. Claus.” The reindeer named on the permit are: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen and Rudolph.
Identification, laboratory testing and certificates of veterinary inspection are part of the state’s health requirements which assist the Georgia Department of Agriculture in protecting the health of animals in the state by preventing the introduction of diseases.
“After consulting with our state veterinarian, I concluded this team of reindeer will not violate any of our biosecurity measures to keep out animal diseases,” said Commissioner Black. “Mr. Claus presented impeccable records. And as it was explained to me, the reindeer will be moving quickly, will only prance and paw on rooftops and will not intermingle with any livestock in Georgia.
“I personally signed this permit because these flying reindeer do not pose a threat to agriculture – and to cut down on paperwork. The only paperwork and red tape this jolly old elf should have to worry with now are the gift wrapping and ribbons used to decorate the gifts he distributes,” said Commissioner Black. “I and the employees of the Georgia Department of Agriculture wish Mr. Claus safe travels as he and his reindeer make deliveries to the good children of Georgia.”
Black makes no mention of it, but we would also advise S. Claus to have the proper passport and driver’s license, and to keep these documents on his person at all times while he remains in Georgia air space.
Claus may have more clout that German-born Mercedes Benz executive swept up by Alabama’s illegal immigration law. But it would be best not to test it.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider