GOP unveils ‘Handshake with Alabama’

Published 11:10 pm Monday, August 16, 2010

Alabama Republican candidates for the Alabama Legislature unveiled a new agenda Monday, an agenda that includes passing an immigration law similar to the one currently used in Arizona, as well as the passage of a constitutional amendment prohibiting the federal government from completing any Alabamian to participate in a health care system.

The agenda, called the “2010 Republican Handshake with Alabama” is supported by District 30 Republican nominee for the state senate Bryan Taylor.

“Today, I join my fellow Republican candidates in extending my hand and giving my word to the people of Alabama that once elected, we will take the power out of the hands of the lobbyists and the special interests, and we will deliver the reins of government back to the people of Alabama,” Taylor said in a Monday press release.

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“We cannot afford to let the party of Obama and Pelosi push their liberal agenda on Alabama. Alabama’s Democratic leadership’s priorities are unmistakably clear: voting themselves a massive pay raise; protecting the no-work, taxpayer-funded state jobs of ‘double-dipping’ legislators; spending millions on wasteful pork projects; killing tax relief for working families; and rewarding their major campaign contributors with sweetheart deals.”

In addition to the immigration law and health care amendment, the “Handshake” also calls for expanding tax incentives for businesses to create jobs, increasing tax credit for small businesses for providing health insurance to employees, requiring lobbyists to report everything spent entertaining public officials, banning state employees and teachers from serving in the Legislature, requiring the Legislature to set aside part of the state tax collections in good economic times to provide a cushion for public education during lean times and Giving subpoena power to the State Ethics Commission to make it easier to investigate public officials.

However, Taylor’s opponent, incumbent state Sen. Wendell Mitchell said the ideas set forth by the GOP are the same ideas the Democrats have been trying to push forward in the Legislature.

“There is nothing new under the sun they’re talking about,” Mitchell said.

“The Democratic majority supported almost everything they’ve listed this year. We certainly appreciate their interest in supporting our ideas.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.