Kelsey Gives a Year in Review

Republican State Senator Brian Kelsey explains the accomplishments of the Tennessee Legislature:

He explains further:

Tennessee placed the final nail in the coffin of ObamaCare Medicaid expansion when Gov. Haslam signed my Stop ObamaCare Act this month. It took two years to pass the bill, but your tax dollars are now safe.

Without this law, it would have cost Tennessee taxpayers a minimum of $200 million a year to expand Medicaid, and that’s assuming no more broken promises. First, President Obama claimed that if you liked your doctor and your insurance plan, you could keep them. Promise broken. Next, we were told that expanding Medicaid under Obamacare would save money because of fewer emergency room visits. In Oregon, however, those who received ObamaCare Medicaid expansion actually increased their emergency room visits 40%. Promise broken. Now Congress is promising to pay 90% of the bill to expand Medicaid under ObamaCare. As one Congressman told me in December, “If you think [the rate] is going to stay at 90%, you’re kidding yourself.” In 1981 Congress broke its promised Medicaid matching rate to balance its budget, and Congress will have to do it again. This law ensures that Tennessee taxpayers won’t get left footing the bill. It also helps pay down the $17 trillion national debt. Contrary to liberal media reports, funds not spent in Tennessee under ObamaCare are not sent to other states. They simply are not spent.

Others in the liberal media have argued that this law still allows Tennessee to participate in ObamaCare Medicaid expansion in the future, so long as the General Assembly approves it. That is the case with all laws. The General Assembly can always change its mind and undo a law in the future. Prior to the passage of this law, a future governor simply could have requested ObamaCare Medicaid expansion in a Medicaid waiver request directly to the federal government. That is no longer the case. We now have a law on the books that is clear: “The Governor shall not make any decision or obligate the State of Tennessee in any way with regard to the expansion of … Medicaid [under Obamacare].”

Federal Balanced Budget Amendment:

This year, Tennessee became the 22nd and Michigan the 23rd of 34 states necessary to call for a federal balanced budget. My Senate Joint Resolution 493 passed the Senate 28-0 in March, and a similar resolution by Rep. Powers was signed by the governor this month! SJR 493 calls for a convention of the states to propose an amendment to the U.S. Constitution requiring a federal balanced budget each year, absent a Congressional declaration of war or an economic recession. The Founding Fathers gave states the ability to call for an Article V convention to reign in the federal government. Now is the time to use it.


Tennessee became the 48th state to end forced annexation, thanks to a bill I was the first to co-sponsor that was signed into law this month. The new law requires a majority vote from the people prior to annexation. Cities now will have to prove to residents that they will provide sufficient services and increased property values for those they hope to annex.


On the positive side, Tennessee finally passed the state charter authorizer law by Sen. Gresham that I co-sponsored. It will allow the state board of education to grant quality charter schools the opportunity to operate even if the local school board disagrees. No longer is the fox guarding the henhouse. In fact, there will now be an incentive for local boards to grant quality charters because if they do not, the scores of those students will not be calculated in their performances.

Attorney General:

Tennessee is the only state in the union in which the Attorney General is selected by the Supreme Court. He is actually twice removed from the people because our Supreme Court also is not elected. This lack of accountability leads to such unpopular decisions as not joining the lawsuit against ObamaCare. It also leaves him unaccountable when officials commit acts of public corruption. I filed bills this year to solve both problems and to change how we select the Attorney General, but all came up short. We need to change this system to give the people a voice in the Attorney General’s office.

Invest in Tennessee:

A new law I passed will encourage start-up companies in Tennessee by allowing crowdfunding, or the raising of money through small contributions from a large number of people. The law allows the raising of up to $1 million in increments of $10,000 per Tennessee investor.

License Plate Scanning:

Did you know that cameras on streets and on police cars are constantly scanning your license plate to search for outstanding warrants? I passed a new law to mandate that this information about where you park be destroyed within 90 days.

Tort Reform:

Accountants and attorneys finally got to take advantage of tort reform this year in a new law I passed granting them a five year statute of repose. Such a statute requires that all lawsuits against accountants and attorneys must be brought within five years from the date on which the act or omission occurred. Like all tort reform, this bill furthers the administration of justice by requiring lawsuits to be brought in a timely manner, while memories are fresh.

Pill Mills:

Prescription drug addiction is becoming a bigger and bigger problem in Tennessee, especially after Florida passed legislation to shut down “pill mills,” or pain clinics that dole out drugs to patients without symptoms. In an effort to shut down these “pill mills,” Rep. Shipley and I passed a law modeled after the one Florida had pioneered with encouraging results.

Boehner’s Revenge?

Remember the funny “Electile Dysfunction” ad run by J.D. Winteregg? He is challenging Speaker John Boehner in his Ohio district in the primary. It was shown here and if you have forgotten, here it is again:

Well, he’s been fired from his position as adjunct professor at Cedarville University in Ohio, according to the Daily Caller.

Is it because of Boehner? No one is saying, but the Speaker of the House does have a lot of political power.

This is the kind of humorous stuff that catches a voter’s attention. The GOP has been staid in its campaigns. Can there be any better example than our last loser – Mitt Romney?

The Thrill Is Gone

I’m not sure even Chris Matthews gets a thrill up his leg anymore when O speaks. explains:

President Obama’s mojo has stopped working, even among the young college crowd — those he once considered part of his base.

When speaking in Pennsylvania Wednesday, 15 community college students were hand-picked to stand in the bleachers behind the president to show excitement for the cameras.

Although audience reaction can be heard at appropriate times during his remarks, the same isn’t reflected in the faces behind him.

What he got instead was silence and blank stares.

Even when Obama turned around to address the students directly to make a point about a partnership program between private business and higher education, he failed to elicit so much as a smile.

Take a look:

The mark of a man who is desperate for attention is this selfie taken by Biden:

Obama must be feeling the lack of adoration to stoop so low as to a selfie by Joe Biden.

Ad Hits Below the Belt

This ad against John Boehner is brilliant. It’s called “When the Moment Is Right” and it’s from his opponent, JD Winteregg.

I would love to see Boehner replaced by another Republican; one with humor to boot. What’s next? An ad to stop that annoying tearing up that happens when you get emotional? Winteregg has a lot of opportunities.

Contrast Is Stark

I happened to hear District Attorney Amy Weirich on the radio this morning. She was on KWAM 990 discussing various issues in Memphis, including the successful mentoring program her office sponsors. She was well spoken, logical, calm and intelligent.

Compare that to this freak show:

When you consider that this man loves the spotlight and national publicity, it’s upsetting to think that he’d be pulling these stunts all the time were he to be elected DA.

Of course it was politically motivated. Why did he decide to “drop by” Juvenile Court on Monday afternoon? Nothing better to do? How did he find a client so fast? Why inject race into it by comparing himself to Dr. King and the civil rights movement? Judge Brown has certainly not suffered because he’s black. Otherwise he would never have gotten a network TV show.

It’s disturbing, too, that he is friends with Thaddeus Matthews. Remember how the former radio host abused Charlotte Bergman? Remember that little problem he had being indicted on three felony counts for posting on his Facebook page a photograph of female child under age 5 performing a sex act on an adult male? Here’s a sample of his demeanor to refresh your memory:

Is this the kind of person you want your DA to pal around with?

Matthews tells the Commercial Appeal that “People…are tired of the corruption in Amy Weirich’s office.” Corruption? Whenever a Democrat knows he’s guilty of something, that’s the very charge he throws against his opponent.

It works pretty well for them. Let’s hope it doesn’t this time.

Governor Gets Street Wise

Is Governor Haslam going all Michelle Obama on us? He’s talking with Sesame Street characters about the benefits of fruits and vegetables:

Let’s hope he doesn’t diss bbq, cornbread, banana pudding or fluffernutters.

Much as I hate the blatant suck up of this, maybe it’s what more Republicans need to do. Our populace seems to prefer entertainment over substance. We hate to talk down to our people, but it sure works for the Democrats.

Can Common Core Be Stopped?

A few articles lately have drawn more attention to the Common Core curricula and what will happen regarding it in Tennessee.

Yesterday it was reported that protestors went to Nashville to convey their anti Common Core feelings to the Legislature. Meanwhile, Gov. Haslam spoke to a group of businessmen and emphasized that Common Core is crucial to the state.

No surprise there as Haslam is one of those behind Common Core.

Midtown Republican Club member Eddie Settles and MemphisShelbyInform blogger and MRC guest Joe Saino have been looking behind the scenes at what is happening.

Saino writes:

This is a subject that I consider more important than even pension reform. This will determine the educational level of our children and grandchildren and the future of our country both economically and from a freedom standpoint.

What Common Core purports to do is set a uniform school curriculum across the country leading to uniform testing and higher standards. What it is fact will do, if fully implemented, is take local control out of the hands of local school boards and particularly out of the hands of parents.

In my 10 years of “OPEN RECORDS ADVOCACY” I have come to the opinion that the most difficult people to get open records information from is local school bureaucrats, starting with the old Memphis School System and now the new Shelby County School bureaucracy which acts much like the old City of Memphis School bureaucracy.

This coming Friday evening, March 14 Mrs. Karen Lamoreaux (Arkansas) will speak from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM at White Station Church of Christ, 2nd floor, 1106 Colonial Road.

He shared this youtube video of Lamoreaux:


Eve Settles has more:

If you want to know what the CA and local news lapdogs are not telling you about this transformation of American education, go hear Karen Lamoreaux on Friday night…

Grassroots protestors of Common Core and its attendant Race to the Top (RTTT) school reforms have been turning out in large numbers at the Capitol this week, and are expected to be present again tomorrow (Thursday) when House representatives vote on an anti-Common Core amendment attached to HB1129 by Rep. Rick Womick of Rutherford County. Rep. Womick is one of the few Tennessee legislators who has taken the time to research the facts underlying RTTT and Common Core. Over time, he has become an outspoken foe. Although Rep. Womick has no announced rivals for his seat, capital sources say that Gov. Haslam has vowed to finance opponents to run against any Tennessee legislator who dares t0 take a stand against Common Core/RTTT reforms.

Education bills have abounded in this session of the Tennessee General Assembly. On one side, there are those pushing and protecting the Bill Gates/Arne Duncan reform agenda, including Gov. Haslam; State Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman; Bill Frist’s SCORE; business and chamber of commerce groups who bought into “higher standards” and “college and career ready” rhetoric and now find themselves in a public fight they never expected; and legislators like Shelby County representative John DeBerry. Rep. DeBerry, who sits on the House Education Committee, arguably owes his last re-election to $112,113 in campaign financing he accepted from Students First, the Washington, D.C.-based school reform advocacy group run by Comm. Huffman’s controversial ex-wife Michele Rhee.

The opposing side is a mix of odd bedfellows including many teachers and teachers unions, Momma and Papa Bears, public school supporters, high-information voters, and a few brave legislators who have done their homework, like Rep. Womick and fellow Rutherford countian Rep. Dawn White. They are fighting for repeal of Common Core; preservation of local control over education; barriers to further privatization of schools that locks out parental and public input; an end to standardized testing with high stakes for teachers and students; ending inappropriate data collection on students and their families; and reinstatement of certain essential instruction in schools, such as cursive handwriting and U.S. government.

People in many states, including Tennessee, are just beginning to realize the harmful impact of the radical reforms ushered in under the auspices of pig nosesRTTT, Arne Duncan, and Bill Gates. Politicians like Gov. Haslam (and his predecessor, Gov. Phil Bredesen), who eagerly drank the Kool-Aid when Race to the Trough Top rolled out and Billy G. was lavishing money around like the proverbial drunken sailor, will find the next few months and years challenging. Coming too close on the tails of the Obamacare scam, voters are fed up with federal over-reaching accomplished through political trickery and deceit.

It will be interesting to find out whether our legislators hear us.