Colton Moore, fingerprinter in chief.

Colton Moore Further Neutered by State Senate

What will we do with a drunken sailor? Shave his belly with a rusty razor. Put him in a long boat till his sober. Stick him in a scupper with a hosepipe bottom. Put him in the bed with the captains daughter. Early in the mornin’! -Or take away his influence on local legislation, I guess.

A while back, when Colton Moore drafted a letter to Governor Kemp asking for the Governor to grant Moore an officer’s commission in the National Guard so that he could lead troops to the Texas border, I thought it was becoming tough to pick on poor Colton. I mean for him to be so stupid as to believe that professional soldiers would follow his command while he had never been in the military before was breathtaking. My only response to him at the time was to give him the phone number of an Army recruiter and tell him to go sign up. Having been through Basic Training, the thought of a Drill Sergeant having their way with him is actually a pretty nice day dream. By the way, Colton, it isn’t too late to go sign up. You should do it. Please do it. Do it now.

Since then I have said several times on Peach Pundit the Podcast™ that I had come to believe calling Colton Moore out felt like punching down. Afterall, he was pretty harmless and obviously not all there. But then, about a year after that, he engaged in some behavior that was essentially inciting backlash against his Republican colleagues in the Senate for not joining him in his latest quixotic campaign. In one instance some of Moore’s supporters showed up to a Senator’s home when they knew he wasn’t there and proceeded to intimidate his wife. This is the type of behavior (among several of his actions) that led to Colton Moore being kicked out of the Senate Republican Caucus. And it was because his actions had begun to impact the safety of others that I decided that criticizing him is no longer punching down, but a civic duty.

He was removed from the caucus not because of his voting record. He wasn’t removed because of the bills he has sponsored. He wasn’t removed for his consistent grifting, publicity-seeking stunts. He wasn’t removed for raising money off Senator Shawn Still’s situation and then not contributing a single dollar to the latter’s legal defense fund. No, none of that. He was removed because he was being too big of an asshole to his colleagues when the place demands that even in the most heated of disagreements that each person is treated with dignity and respect.

At this point, Colton Moore has the respect of none of his colleagues in the Senate, let alone [thanks for the correction, Jessica] in the House where he has been barred from entering that chamber. Don’t believe me? Check out what happened on the floor yesterday as the Senate Rules Chairman took to the well to make Colton Moore’s local bills general bills.

Wait, wait wait, was that too much inside baseball? Well, let me break it down. A nerdy interlude:

Local bills are bills that only impact specific local counties and cities. These are things like SPLOSTs, creating tax advantaged districts for local businesses, senior homestead exemptions, and hotel-motel taxes among a myriad of others issues. It is common practice to allow local delegations (Senators and Reps who represent the same counties and cities) to negotiate amongst themselves on whether to move local bills. Senators usually have a lot more influence than Representatives in that process because they can potentially be the only Senator to represent an entire county. So if one Senator decides to not allow a local bill to pass, it dies. There is a lot of power with that responsibility.

General bills, however, can be carried by any member and are subject to the committee process that we are all more familiar with. Under normal circumstance, it is way more difficult to pass legislation this way, but it seems the Senate as a whole has decided that when it comes to Colton Moore, it is the only way to pass those bills.

Typically if a local bill has the support of the delegation, it swoops through the legislative processes at the speed of light. While there is a committee to approve these bills, they do not meet. The chairman is simply responsible for making sure all of the requirements are met: ads placed in local legal organ, members signing off, etc. The bills are then placed onto a local calendar, that is to say they are grouped together, sometimes as many as 20-30 and then the calendar is voted on in a single vote.

It is considered dirty pool to vote against other members local legislation or to ignore the will of a local delegation. The idea is that as a member you are expected to take care of your folks back home and you know better than everyone else what is best for your own community. Someone in Hazlehurst doesn’t know what it is like in Cedartown and vice versa. And that is the type of power Colton Moore had and exercised until yesterday.

It appears that Colton Moore has told his locally elected officials to pound sand when it came to their local bills. Seeing how out of favor their State Senator is in the General Assembly, they took the opportunity to reach out to Senate Leadership about their local bills in an effort to seek relief from the lack of representation they are getting from Colton Moore.

Back to the motion of Matt Brass, the Senate Rules Chairman. Special thanks to Elliot Pierce for tipping us off and for providing us with this extraordinary video:

Listen to Brass’s words carefully. He knows this is an extraordinary thing to do. “I do not take this measure lightly. I don’t want to do this. And I would never do this if it wasn’t for good reason… I’m asking y’all to vote with me to vote with his citizens that are not being represented right now.” Emphasis mine.

Oof. That’s gonna leave a mark.

Moore for his part went to the well to plead with his colleague to not neuter him this way. In the end, Moore could not find a single person to vote with him and Brass’s motion passed 44-1 with Moore as the lone no vote. With that vote any power Colton Moore had left in the Georgia State Senate evaporated. And listening to the fire in Moore’s voice, you can tell that he knows it too.

2 Replies to “Colton Moore Further Neutered by State Senate”

  1. Scot, this bit here of “…In one instance some of Moore’s supporters showed up to a Senator’s home when they knew he wasn’t there and proceeded to intimidate his wife.” is not quite accurate and I just want to correct it for your knowledge.

    The people showing up and intimidating Senator Bo Hatchett’s wife in her home were paid political operatives hired by an out-of-state guy named Clifford Maloney. I covered this intimidation incident, along with some background into what kind of character Maloney is in this archived edition of the PV last Fall:

    1. Thanks for the info, Bill. I will share that I heard this account from multiple State Senators before I mentioned it. They arrived the moment the caucus went into a meeting where cell phones were not allowed. So when she called her husband, he was not available. The timing of their arrival added to the perception that it was coordinated by Moore.

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