The holiday mayhem is a hectic series of parties and celebrations, gift-buying and giving…it’s also a time when Congress so often tries a last minute bait-and-switch or cover-of-darkness maneuver when Americans aren’t paying attention. The budget vote in December which broke the cap on discretionary government spending set a mere 3 years ago under the Budget Control Act was just such an instance. This year, however, despite all the holiday activity, Americans For Prosperity Georgia activists were paying attention and we organized a series of No Empty Promises Town Halls, congressional office visits, phone calls and letter writing campaigns around the State. Nearly sixty activists showed up in Evans on December 10th, followed by dozens more in Warner Robins and around 50 in Tifton. Even a week before Christmas in the remote college town of Statesboro, a virtual ghost town with students home for the holidays, a small crowd gathered to strategize the next steps for conservative grassroots activists.
In the end, after hundreds of AFP activists sent emails and made phone calls into our congressional representative’s offices, Washington would not keep its promises and the spending caps were broken. The only 3 House members in Georgia who stood firm were Representatives Jack Kingston, Paul Broun and Phil Gingrey. Some of our staunchest congressional allies with impeccable records on tax/spending/regulatory issues, overall, reneged on this one. [I explain it all here on Mornings with Zoller and Bryant talk radio last week]. However, the message from AFP Georgia activists was simple and clear: we are doubling down on our efforts to hold Congress accountable for the spending promises it makes. With the roll out of the powerful Spending Spotlight tool (a direct response to the empty promises from DC) that allows GA activists to locate and expose waste, fraud and corruption to the level of a local zip code, the back peddling is only serving to strengthen the resolve of grassroots activists around the State. As I told the Atlanta Journal Constitution at the end of the vote, “We may have lost the battle, but not the war.” This is a set back…and a galvanizing force for AFP activists pursuing limited government in the name of economic freedom.