Archive for the ‘Rob Woodall’ Category

Voting against a hike in the debt ceiling – after voting for it

My AJC colleague Daniel Malloy sends the following from the bowels of Washington:

The deal to raise the nation’s debt ceiling contained a little bit of legislative showmanship that hit the House floor on Wednesday. The last-minute Aug. 2 accord gave President Barack Obama immediate additional borrowing authority of $400 billion, with another $500 billion available unless Congress passed a “resolution of disapproval.”

The resolution option, dreamed up by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, allowed Republicans to back a deal to raise the debt ceiling and then turn around and vote against raising the debt ceiling just to prove to their constituents (and primary voters) how much they hate raising the debt ceiling.

Even in the event that hell freezes over and the Senate passes it, Obama would surely veto it.

Nonetheless, the resolution passed the House 232-186, with near-universal Republican support. This included the votes of two Georgians who voted for the debt deal, …

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Rob Woodall takes flak for debt-ceiling vote

U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall, the freshman Republican from Lawrenceville, ran into some flak last night over his vote to approve the debt-ceiling deal reached by Congress this month.

Woodall was one of three Georgians to vote “aye” – the others were U.S. Rep. Tom Price, R-Roswell, and Johnny Isakson.

From Blake Aued of the Athens Banner-Herald, who was at the town hall meeting:

Paul Leslie of Winder likened it to driving a bus off a cliff, then opening a parachute.

“Some things you can’t compromise on,” he said. “You can’t compromise with evil.”

Woodall, R-Lawrenceville, said he understands that viewpoint, but stood by his vote.

“I’m proud of that vote,” he told the crowd.

“We’re not,” one man called out.

Aued’s piece closes with this odd exchange:

Woodall defended global free trade, saying that it promotes U.S. exports. The strength of U.S. manufacturing is quality, and Americans should not try to compete on low wages with China and Mexico, he …

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Rob Woodall and the case against political nest eggs

Democrats and Republicans in Washington haven’t finished playing chicken with your 401(k). But they have, fortunately, decided to take August off.

In that, they’re like your neighborhood’s teenage vandals — who politely wait for you to repaint and reseed and rebuild before they strike again.

Rob Woodall (left), in a crowded 2010 debate for the 7th District congressional seat. Hyosub Shin, hshin@ajc.com

Rob Woodall (left), in a crowded 2010 debate for the 7th District congressional seat. Hyosub Shin, hshin@ajc.com

Because we are a red state, the debt-ceiling deal and Wall Street’s unhappy reaction have focused attention primarily on President Barack Obama, whose approval ratings have sunk to the 40 percent range.

But it would be wrong if we failed to also note American disappointment with the 535 members of Congress. According to a CNN poll, voter approval has sunk to a historic, 14 percent low.

And yet, truth be told, it can be harder to fire a member of Congress than a president.

In the U.S. House, the national practice of building safe districts for incumbents in power — …

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Rob Woodall suggests an alternative to term limits

U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Lawrenceville, today reports that he’s introduced a bill that would prevent members of Congress from amassing large amounts of campaign cash to keep challengers at bay.

The measure would require wealthy, self-funding candidates to give quick public notice when they add their own cash to their campaigns.

Somebody tell me why this isn’t a good idea. From the press release:

Known as the “Competitive Elections Act,” Woodall’s bill would allow campaign funds to be spent only in the election in which they are raised—thus eliminating the “war chests” that today discourage challengers from entering a race. By leveling the financial playing field for incumbents and challengers, Woodall hopes to create more robust elections and give voters more choices on the ballot.

Read the text here. Woodall says his legislation makes more sense than trying to insert term limits into the U.S. Constitution:

“To many voters, it seems like an impossible task …

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New congressional districts — and why Buckhead will remain Democratic territory

Fresh from rescuing the nation from economic calamity, Georgia’s members of Congress will spend the next few weeks indulging in self-preservation.

We are 10 days away from a special session of the Legislature assigned the task of redrawing Georgia’s political boundaries.

Georgia's congressional districts, as currently drawn

Georgia’s congressional districts, as currently drawn

Americans often think of democracy as the process by which voters pick their leaders. Redistricting is the B-side of that record —the once-in-a-decade chance for many incumbent politicians to pick their voters, and thus preserve their hold on power.

This is the first time in Georgia history that Republicans will have start-to-finish control of the process, which will be primarily, but not entirely, driven by last year’s census.

Under Democratic rule, GOP lawmakers criticized a process that was ruthless and secretive. Republicans promise to conduct themselves more openly. But score-settling will still be the rule — and the targets won’t always be …

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Your morning jolt: John Lewis joins six Republicans in vote against debt-ceiling bill

Last night’s vote in the U.S. House on a debt-ceiling deal ripped Georgia’s congressional delegation in two, with Democrat John Lewis of Atlanta joining six Republicans in a final condemnation.

In quoting Mohandas Gandhi, Lewis sounded not unlike some tea partyists we’ve run into: “’All compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take on fundamentals. All compromise on fundamentals is surrender. It is all give and no take.’ The Democrats gave and gave and gave, but we received nothing in return. This is not a fair deal. It is not a good deal. It is not a balanced compromise.”

Voting for the bill were two Republicans – Tom Price of Roswell, Rob Woodall of Lawrenceville – and four Democrats – David Scott of Atlanta, Sanford Bishop of Albany, John Barrow of Savannah, and Hank Johnson of Decatur.

Voting against the bill were congressmen with major military concerns in their districts: Phil Gingrey of Marietta, Austin Scott of …

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Johnny Isakson, two House Republicans to vote for debt plan

Many members of Georgia’s congressional delegation – Democrat and Republican – still remain undecided about final passage of the debt-ceiling deal, but sides are being chosen in a hurry.

On Saturday, U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson gave a passionate speech about the need to come to an agreement. This afternoon, Politico.com has this line:

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) said she was inclined to support the plan, as did Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.)

We have yet to hear from Georgia’s Saxby Chambliss, but the two senators only rarely cancel out one another’s votes. The vote in the Senate is expected tomorrow morning.

In the House, where the vote will come this evening, we may have as many as three “no” votes cast by Georgia members. U.S. Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ranger, and Paul Broun, R-Athens, are solid opponents. Phil Gingrey, R-Marietta, is leaning that way.

“I took the pledge that I would not vote to increase the debt ceiling by one penny unless …

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U.S. Rep. John Barrow to be shoved out of Savannah?

A reliable contact has just sent us this draft of new congressional lines now moving among influential Republicans in Georgia – the first detailed look we’ve seen:

ScreenShot095

Click here for a your own downloadable copy. As David Wasserman of Cook Political Report notes below, the map is the same one he posted in May.

Nonetheless, we’re being assured that these lines are being passed around as a starting point for a special session of the Legislature that begins Aug. 15. At a glance:

– In the 12th District, U.S. Rep. John Barrow, the last white Democrat from the Deep South, would be pushed out of his residence in Savannah. Previously, Republicans targeted him by forcing Barrow to move from his original base in Athens. Under this map, Augusta would become Barrow’s third home. If he survives a 2012 vote.

– The new, Republican-dominated 14th District would stretch from Hall County, home to both Gov. Nathan Deal and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, northeast to Rabun Gap – and eastward into …

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Austin Scott joins Georgia Republicans in favor of John Boehner debt-ceiling plan

Over the course of the day, we’ll try to keep up with where Georgia’s Republicans are on House Speaker John Boehner’s debt-ceiling/deficit reduction plan, which will probably be voted on after the markets close today.

Some of you have wondered why we’re not counting Democrats. They’ve pretty much lined up against the legislation — this is primarily an internal GOP fight. At this point, we count five Republicans in favor, three against.

A 6 p.m. vote has been postponed while Boehner’s troops collect votes. Consider every vote essential:

U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, R-Coweta County, indicates he’s ready to support House Speaker John Boehner’s debt-ceiling plan. Bob Andres, bandres@ajc.com

U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, R-Coweta County, indicates he’s ready to support House Speaker John Boehner’s debt-ceiling plan. Bob Andres, bandres@ajc.com

– Lynn Westmoreland of Coweta County: This morning, he indicated he’s a “yes” vote.

“Having looked at the whole thing, I think we did make some positive adjustments with a few little changes we made. It looks like we’re getting about 60 percent of what the [Paul] Ryan …

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In search of Republicans who have John Boehner’s back

If all goes as planned, Barack Obama and John Boehner will spend Sunday at the White House, locked together in what may be the largest game of Texas hold ‘em the world has ever seen.

The president and speaker are the two figures with the most skin in the Washington debate over an increased debt ceiling and the $14 trillion federal deficit. Obama wants to be re-elected. Boehner wants the U.S. House to remain Republican.

Neither wins with a Wall Street meltdown, which is what we’re assured will happen if the pair don’t reach an agreement on raising the federal government’s borrowing limit by Aug. 2.

U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Savannah/AJC file

U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Savannah/AJC file

Democrats in Congress are likely to rally, however reluctantly, to whatever cuts to entitlements Obama agrees to. But Boehner’s hold on his Republican troops is less secure. Especially if the deal includes increased federal revenue — not through tax rate increases, but the elimination of tax breaks.

Which of Georgia’s eight …

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