By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Tuesday, February 8, the 2017 Alabama Legislative Session has begun, and Tea Party leaders from across the State were on hand to greet them and press legislators on a variety of conservative issues.
Dr. Lou Campomenosi with the Common Sense Campaign of Alabama urged all groups to oppose Alabama Governor Robert Bentley’s $800 million prison plan, “Make sure all State Tea Party groups are working in tandem on this.”
Alabama Auditor Jim Zeigler also spoke against the controversial prison -building scheme which he called, “Bentley’s billion dollar boondoggle building plan.” Zeigler said that borrowing $800 million to build four prisons was, “Not the only option” for dealing with prison overcrowding.
Zeigler urged the Tea Party activists to call their legislators and urge them to vote, “No. Starting today, let’s walk the halls of the State House against the Bentley prison building plan.”
The Reverend John Killian said that he is thankful to be an Alabamian. Our ancestors hacked their way through a wilderness to build a Republican form of government. “I am proud to say that we have the lowest property taxes in the nation and they are still too high.”
Killian said that he is proud that it was Alabama that produced a leader like Jeff Sessions. Killian said that he is ashamed that Roy Moore is not going to work each day as our Chief Justice. Killian urged legislators to, “Do something good and abolish the JIC,” (Judicial Inquiry Commission).
Killian urged legislators to pass strong Pro-life legislation, including a bill to protect doctors from being able to exercise their conscience and opt out of medical procedures that violate their beliefs.
Killian said that we believe in states rights and that this is the year to repeal Common Core.
Rev. Killian said that Alabama is a great state. There is no state our size that is even close to our natural resources. We in Alabama know that you can’t put too much power in one part of the government. “We know the danger of too much power in one portion of state government.”
Audemus jura nostra defendere. We dare defend our rights.
Campomenosi said that Colonel Mike Parsons has been a leading voice against Common Core.
Parsons said that the Tea Party was going to spearhead a drive to remove the Common Core standards from Alabama schools. Last year we were going to get it done, but the politicians would not even let it get to the floor.
Parson said that former Alabama School Superintendent Tommy Bice agreed to comply with the Obama Education Department. He agreed to replace our very successful education standards. He dumbed down the standards to help Obama create national standards and agreed to adopt the Obama template on how to deal with failing schools.
Parsons also accused Bice of adopting Obama’s discipline policy. Under our agreement, “As a teacher, if I don’t have discipline I can’t teach.” Parsons said that teachers now have to jump over hurdles before they can send a disruptive child home.
Colonel Parsons said that the framework was set up to do several things. One of those was to remove the Alabama high school graduation exam. Parsons said that under Plan 2020 everybody is supposed to graduate college or career ready. The whole system is state controlled and directs career paths for children. That is wrong this is America.
Parsons said that they Didn’t have the big money to persuade the legislators to overturn the Common Core standards. Parsons said that the current framework is designed to intimidate teachers into passing kids.
Col. Parsons said that in March the federal government announced they were doing an investigation into Alabama test scores. Superintendent Bice resigned that same month just a year and a half after he got a 25 percent pay increase.
Parsons warned that “We are at the bottom of our country’s education ladder.”
State Representative Mike Holmes (R-Wetumpka) spoke out against Gov. Bentley’s prison plan, which he called a, “Fiscally irresponsible plan.” Rep. Holmes said that he thought it was suspicious that the $50 million in savings perfectly equally the $50 million in debt service costs with the plan. Holmes said that if a business presented such a plan to the bank, it would get thrown out of the banker’s office.
The Director of the Alabama Legislative Watchdogs Ann Eubank spoke out against Common Core which she said was developmentally inappropriate for growing minds and accused the standards of teaching arguments based on emotion instead of logic.
Eubank also unveiled a lengthy anti-corruption platform designed to stamp out the corruption that has plagued the State under both Democratic and Republican control.