Georgia lawmakers are out of touch with voters when it come to drug testing people who receive benefits from the government, and need to be reminded that Georgians favor drug tests for lawmakers over drug tests for the poor and unemployed. That’s why, this week, Better Georgia is helping voters send a simple, direct message to Gov. Nathan Deal, a pee cup with a note, “You Pee First, Governor.”
This week, while Georgia ranks dead last in the nation for job growth, legislators ignored bills that would bring jobs to Georgia and instead, targeted people who’ve lost their jobs. Both chambers passed bills requiring parents seeking temporary public assistance to submit to urine drug screens. While lawmakers are busy creating a drug screen for Georgia’s poorest families, they have ignored two groups that receive and control a bigger share of government money: corporate executives and elected officials.
A recent survey by the nonpartisan, nonprofit Better Georgia shows that Georgians’ more heavily favor drug tests for elected officials and CEO’s of corporations that profit from tax dollars than for recipients of unemployment benefits and “welfare.” The survey of 806 registered Georgia voters has a 3.5% margin of error and showed:
- 79 % support drug testing elected officials and senior appointed officials
- 66% support drug testing CEO’s of corporations that get tax credits or government contracts
- 64% support drug testing welfare recipients and unemployment recipient
Better Georgia published the results of the poll, but lawmakers still didn’t get the message. Instead, they are moving forward to force the poorest Georgians to submit to urine drug screens. So now, we’re going to tell Gov. Deal, if he’s going to require drug tests for Georgia residents, he should pee first, and so should the legislators. Think they’ll get the message?
Amy Morton is Chair of Better Georgia, Inc. and a 20 year veteran of progressive politics in the Peach State. She previously chaired Georgia’s WIN List, was Vice Chair of Victory 2010, the Coordinated Campaign of the Democratic Party of Georgia and has consulted on multiple candidates and independent committees. A North Carolina native, Amy is a licensed marriage and family therapist and has her own practice in Macon, Georgia where she has lived for the last 28 years.