Group recommends litmus test for 'conservative principals'
Twenty-five Republicans from the Georgia House of Representatives announced, Monday, that they are forming a group to evaluate, on a daily basis, the conservative merits of every single bill that comes to their chamber in the capitol. Like its national counterpart, the Georgia lawmakers are adopting the Republican Study Committee moniker.
Georgia's RSC, according to the news release from the Gold Dome, will evaluate legislation based on five criteria that, according to Rep. Charlice Byrd (R-Woodstock), will "promote conservative policy in the best interests of liberty and prosperity" for the people of the Peach State.
The group plans to score each bill on whether it:
- reduces the size of government;
- lowers, or eliminates, taxes or fees;
- encourages people to take "personal responsibility," and not depend on the state for financial assistance;
- lets people decide personal matters for themselves and their families;
- and does not cross the line of what committee members feel is beyond the "proper role of government."
The score a bill earns is then supposed to help legislators "decide the position they take."
"What they are not doing," argues Eric Gray, spokesman for the Democratic Party of Georgia, "is judging whether or not the legislation is effective." Gray added that there has been "far too much ineffective legislation" that has come through the Georgia House in the last several years.
The members of the Georgia House RSC, however, say that is up to each representative to decide for themselves. "We just want to help give members the tools needed to fully understand the affects of legislation," said Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-Cassville), one of the members of the group's leadership team, so they can "make better personal voting decisions based on our conservative principals."