Week Seven: Bills and Big Budget
Last week was certainly eventful and filled with the best and worst of politics. I'm grateful to be able to update you thanks to our local newspapers.
Like everyone else, I'm sure you're still wondering what is going to come from the situation with Speaker Ralston. Although I don't know how things will play out, I’m here to assure you that we are not giving up the fight. The pattern of wrongdoings that have occurred and the abuse of power cannot and will not be swept under the rug. As I mentioned before, I am working with my colleagues to introduce a bill to change the law on legislative leave for lawyers. Other Representatives like myself, especially Rep. David Clark and I, are very upset about this situation and we have voiced our strong opposition to Speaker Ralston, urging him to resign.
I was also honored to co-sponsor House Bill 481 this week. The “LIFE Act” mimics pro-life legislation that I was working on introducing this session. This bill includes a heartbeat provision and is a law that is very important to our shared values and principles. Georgia Right to Life has come out in support of the legislation which has garnered a good deal of attention, and support thus far, and has a good chance of advancing through the process.
Speaking of the process, it isn't all about legislation. One great way I strive to make changes in Georgia politics is meeting and speaking with the youth in order to inspire them and encourage them to take action and interest in local government. The Young American’s for Liberty group is at many universities around the state and I had the pleasure of speaking with the group at Kennesaw State University this week.
These great young students have a passion for limited government politics and I hope to one day see some of them sitting beside me on the House floor helping fight the good fight and helping make Georgia a better, more conservative state! Many of them spoke with me about their ambitions and it should give us all a lot of hope to see young individuals, committed to the time tested principles of liberty and freedom.
I’d also like to thank the Church siblings, Jacob, Larson, and Samantha from Hiawassee, Georgia as well as the Mathew siblings, Hudson and Delaney from Blairsville, Georgia, for coming to the Capitol and serving as page’s to me this past week during session.
Finally, biggest vote of the week was the "big" budget, HB 31. My staff has been working for weeks, flipping through hundreds of pages of spending, singling out the good and the bad. I am convinced that without myself and the small group of fiscal conservatives that hold seats in the House currently, that the budget would be even worse. While it was ripe with subsidies and things that are not the proper role of government, my number one thought was: "Why does our Georgia budget process mirror Washington's?" I would challenge any one of my colleagues to find any honest individual that doesn't agree that we can do better! While we have an uphill battle, it is speaking out that will lay the foundation for a brighter future.
As I’ve mentioned before, the voting on the House floor is at top speed and I will continue to update my voting record page on my websitewww.mattgurtler.com to keep all of you informed!
Please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have. I love hearing from all of you and without you all none of this would be possible.
As always, it is an honor to serve.