Let a very necessary conversation begin. From the Associated Press:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal called on the Republican Party to “stop being the stupid party” on Thursday as GOP leaders promised fundamental changes to help stave off future losses.
In the keynote address at the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting, Jindal said the GOP doesn’t need to change its values but “might need to change just about everything else we are doing.”
“We’ve got to stop being the stupid party. It’s time for a new Republican Party that talks like adults,” he said. “We had a number of Republicans damage the brand this year with offensive and bizarre comments. I’m here to say we’ve had enough of that.”
Jindal, thought to be a potential 2016 presidential contender, offered little detail in the 25-minute address. He called on conservatives to shift their focus from Capitol Hill number crunching to “the place where conservatism thrives — in the real world beyond the Washington Beltway.”
…He called on conservatives to stop fighting with Democrats on their terms about the size of government in Washington and focus instead on connecting with voters across the nation.
“Today’s conservatism is completely wrapped up in solving the hideous mess that is the federal budget, the burgeoning deficits, the mammoth federal debt, the shortfall in our entitlement programs,” he said. “We seem to have an obsession with government bookkeeping. This is a rigged game, and it is the wrong game for us to play.”
In another arena of the GOP’s post-2012 revolution, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., continues his charm offensive on immigration reform. A Huffington Post take on Rubio’s talk radio encounter with Mark Levin includes this:
Rubio is likable, and you see that having an effect on Levin. Rubio is heading off criticism by making the effort to talk to the loudest and most influential voices who have traditionally used the “amnesty” label as a sledgehammer to halt any Republican efforts on immigration reform. And Levin’s response is to start to convince himself that these ideas of Rubio’s aren’t really all that bad. Notice also how Levin appreciates Rubio’s comment about wanting to hear ideas and push back from others.
Slightly more than three years ago, former state senator Kasim Reed narrowly won a runoff against councilwoman Mary Norwood to become mayor of Atlanta – in part by accusing her of being a closet Republican.
That doesn’t look like an option he’ll use against any opponent in 2013. Count the number of GOP names at the top of this invitation for a Feb. 5 fundraiser for Reed at the Capital City Club:
See the entire invitation here. The suggested minimum for the event is $250, but contributions up to $2,500 will be gladly accepted.
Nothing hit harder this morning than the sight of 69-year-old former House speaker Terry Coleman, shackled and handcuffed after an arrest for attempting to board a plane with a handgun in his briefcase:
The Georgia Budget and Policy Institute, a fiscally liberal research organization, this morning begins a conference on state finances with a provocative message for lawmakers: Georgia’s tax base has room to grow.
From the GBPI talking points:
Georgia collects less revenue from its citizens and businesses than almost any other state. The state ranked 50th nationwide in the amount of revenue it collected per person in 20111, and 41st in the amount it collected from businesses in 2010 2 – the most recent years for which data are available.
When state and local taxes are counted together, Georgia’s overall tax level ranks 42nd nationwide as of 20103. Since Georgia’s tax level is already low compared to other states, lawmakers have some room to increase revenues while keeping the state competitive.
In addition to ranking low compared to other states, Georgia’s taxes are now much lower than even in the state’s own recent past. Georgians devoted 4.5 percent of their annual income to state taxes in 2010, compared to an average of 5.9 percent in the 1990s (Figure 1). This means that if the state were to return to a more historically normal tax level , it could bring in billions of dollars in new revenue for important state services and investments.
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes a look at an anti-gun violence group’s criticism of U.S. Rep. John Barrow for showing off his arsenal of home firearms.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider