Category: Alabama Politics

Legislative Update 2020 – Week 4

General Legislative Information
Use these links for Alabama Legislative Information Systems Online:
Home Page, State Senators, House Reps, Bills, Listen/Watch online

MAP TO THE AL STATEHOUSE -11 S. UNION ST, MONTGOMERY

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: WEEK 4 (FEB. 25-27)

THE VULNERABLE CHILD COMPASSION AND PROTECTION ACT
(VCAP)

PASSED HOUSE AND SENATE HEALTH COMMITTEES!

SPONSORS:  Rep. Wes Allen HB303  and Sen. Shay Shellnut SB219
View Testimonies of Witnesses in Favor
of VCAP at House and Senate Hearings (3 minutes or less)
URGENT:  CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE & SENATOR TODAY
LEAVE A MESSAGE ASKING THEM TO VOTE “YES” ON VCAP! 

“Find My Legislator” is on the tool bar at the top of the page.
DESCRIPTION: 
This bill would prohibit the performance of a medical procedure or the prescription or issuance of medication, upon or to a minor child, that is intended to alter the minor child’s gender [sex] or delay puberty, with certain exceptions. This bill would provide for the disclosure of certain information concerning students to parents by schools.

UPDATED STATUS:  Both bills passed out of the House and Senate Health Committees with two friendly amendments and will head to the floor of both chambers for debate. One of our witnesses was threatened and another of our witnesses was harassed by the opposition immediately after the Senate hearing ended. The bill sponsors and supporters would appreciate your prayers as we move forward.  The opposition is rallying their troops to stop this important bill.   EF’s POSITION: We support this bill. In Alabama permanent life altering medical treatments are being given to minors who have false beliefs about their bodies. In some states healthy 13 year old girls are undergoing double mastectomies to alter their bodies and boys as young as 15 are getting castrated.  In Alabama minors are given hormones to delay natural puberty as well as cross sex hormones which can cause irreversible damage They may also be referred for surgery.  This bill gives children and adolescents time to mature in their healthy, developing bodies. It protects them until the age of 19 from harmful medications and procedures.    

RESOURCES:
Southeast Law Institute Bill (HB303, SB219) Summary
EF’s  VCAP Background and Terminology Paper
EF’s VCAP 1 pager
Responding to the Transgender Issue-Parent Resource Guide (Excellent resource!)

Gender Is Real Legislative Act (GIRL Act)
NO NEW ACTION THIS WEEK

SPONSOR:  Rep Chris Pringle  Read HB35.  

DESCRIPTION: This bill would provide that public K-12 schools may not participate in, sponsor, or provide coaching staff for interscholastic athletic events at which athletes are allowed to participate in competition against athletes who are of a different biological gender, unless the event specifically includes both biological sexes.

STATUS:  Passed out of the House State Government Committee and is headed to the House floor for debate.  

EF’s POSITION: We support this bill. We had the opportunity to testify at the committee meeting.  Here are two articles from that meeting:

SEE FAST FACTS ON SPORTS FLYER HERE.  Flyer is from Parent Resource Guide which you can view here-see page 37 for graphics and p. 40 for end notes.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA
NO NEW ACTION THIS WEEK
 

SPONSOR: Sen. Tim Melson Read SB165

DESCRIPTION: This bill would authorize certain residents of this state diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition and designated caregivers to be registered and obtain a medical cannabis card, thereby authorizing the patient to use cannabis for medical use. 

STATUS:  The bill passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with several amendments added to it. Vote count:  8 yea, 1 “no” (Sen. Stutts), 1 “Abstain” (Sen. Givan). It is headed to the Senate floor. 

EF’s POSITION: We oppose this bill. Here is a link to more marijuana information from our national Eagle Forum website.  View marijuana flier here.  See the AL Attorney General’s letter to lawmakers to oppose Medical Marijuana 

 
MANDATORY IMMUNIZATION DATABASE
NO NEW ACTION THIS WEEK
 
 

SPONSOR: Rep. April Weaver Read HB103.  Sen. Tim Melson Read SB56

DESCRIPTION: This bill would require health care providers to report vaccines administered to the immunization registry and would require health care providers to review the registry before a vaccine is administered unless the health care provider has a bi-directional interface with the registry.

STATUS:   It passed out of the House Health Committee and is headed to the House floor.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION:  We do not view this bill as a “Vax” vs. “Antivax” bill.  Our issues lie with (1.) the inability to opt out and (2.) that patient information will be shared from the AL Department of Public Health which is not required to comply with HIPPAA guidelines in the way they collect, monitor and use patient private health information. Additionally, (3.) the types of personally identifiable information that would be collected are too invasive.

ACTION: Contact your House Rep and ask him/her to vote no. 

MORE INFO: For a detailed breakdown of this bill you can view these links: Keep Your Politics Out Of Our Healthcare: Update on SB56  and Spotlight on HB103: Immunization Tracking Bill.

BANNING FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION
NO NEW ACTION THIS WEEK
 
 
SPONSOR: Rep. Laura Hall  Read HB53

DESCRIPTION:Relating to crimes and offenses; to establish the crime of female genital mutilation.STATUS:   Rep. Laura Hall’s HB53 prohibiting Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and making it a Class B felony was amended in committee and passed on the House floor on Thursday.  View the roll call vote here

EAGLE FORUM POSITION:  We are supportive of prohibiting this atrocity and will follow these bills and make the necessary contacts along the way.  

 

RESOLUTION: PORNOGRAPHY AS A PUBLIC HEALTH CRISIS
PASSED ON THE HOUSE FLOOR – A COPY WILL BE SENT TO THE GOVERNOR!
 
 

SPONSOR: Rep Danny Garrett SR7

DESCRIPTION: The resolution declaring Pornography as a Public Health Crisis 

STATUS:   This resolution was passed in the AL Senate on Feb. 4 and passed on the House floor on Feb. 27th.  It is now headed to the Governor’s desk for her signature. 

EAGLE FORUM POSITION:  This is one of our priority pieces of legislation.  Pornography is a public health risk.  Please see Fast Fact on Pornography here.  

 
 
 

WEEK 5 LEGISLATIVE RADIO UPDATE

Listen to Eagle Forum’s Executive Director, Becky Gerritson discuss highlights from week 3 of the AL legislative session with Tactics Radio host, Caleb Colquitt. (Click on the picture to listen.  The clip is from 0:00-39:39.)

VIEW PREVIOUS 2020 AL LEGISLATIVE UPDATES
Week 1 (Feb. 4-6)
Lottery Town Hall (Feb. 12)
Week 2 (Feb. 11-13)
Week 3 (Feb. 25-27)

FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS.

JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST HERE.

Eagle Forum of Alabama’s public policy work for Alabama families is made possible by generous donations from our supporters.  Help us as we stand strong fighting daily for liberty. 

Legislative Update 2020 – Week 3

 

General Legislative Information
Use these links for Alabama Legislative Information Systems Online:
Home Page, State Senators, House Reps, Bills, Listen/Watch online

MAP TO THE AL STATEHOUSE -11 S. UNION ST, MONTGOMERY

Legislative Update: Week 3 (Feb. 18-20)

THE VULNERABLE CHILD COMPASSION AND PROTECTION ACT
(VCAP)

SPONSORS: Rep. Wes Allen HB303 and Sen. Shay Shellnut SB219

DESCRIPTION: This bill would prohibit the performance of a medical procedure or the prescription or issuance of medication, upon or to a minor child, that is intended to alter the minor child’s gender [sex] or delay puberty, with certain exceptions. This bill would provide for the disclosure of certain information concerning students to parents by schools.

STATUS: Both bills were introduced on Thursday. HB303 will be in House Health Committee room 206 at 10:30am on Wednesday, Feb. 26. SB219 will be in the Senate Healthcare Committee in room 304 at 12:00pm on Wednesday, Feb 26th.

EF’s POSITION: We support this bill. In Alabama permanent life altering medical treatments are being given to minors who have false beliefs about their bodies. In some states healthy 13 year old girls are undergoing double mastectomies to alter their bodies and boys as young as 15 are getting castrated. In Alabama minors are given hormones to delay natural puberty as well as cross sex hormones which can cause irreversible damage They may also be referred for surgery. This bill gives children and adolescents time to mature in their healthy, developing bodies. It protects them until the age of 19 from harmful medications and procedures.

Southeast Law Institute Bill (HB303, SB219) Summary
EF’s VCAP Background and Terminology Paper
EF’s VCAP 1 pager
Responding to the Transgender Issue-Parent Resource Guide (Excellent resource!)

Gender Is Real Legislative Act (GIRL Act)

SPONSOR: Rep Chris Pringle Read HB35.

DESCRIPTION: This bill would provide that public K-12 schools may not participate in, sponsor, or provide coaching staff for interscholastic athletic events at which athletes are allowed to participate in competition against athletes who are of a different biological gender, unless the event specifically includes both biological sexes.

STATUS: Passed out of the House State Government Committee and is headed to the House floor.

EF’s POSITION: We support this bill. We had the opportunity to testify at the committee meeting. Here are two articles from that meeting:
Bill to restrict Transgender High School Athletes Moves Ahead.
Alabama lawmaker pushes for transgender athlete ban as ‘protection of the young ladies’

SEE FAST FACTS ON SPORTS FLYER HERE. Flyer is from Parent Resource Guide which you can view here-see page 37 for graphics and p. 40 for end notes.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA

SPONSOR: Sen. Tim Melson Read SB165

DESCRIPTION: This bill would authorize certain residents of this state diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition and designated caregivers to be registered and obtain a medical cannabis card, thereby authorizing the patient to use cannabis for medical use.

STATUS: The bill passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with several amendments added to it. Vote count: 8 yea, 1 “no” (Sen. Stutts), 1 “Abstain” (Sen. Givan). It is headed to the Senate floor.

EF’s POSITION: We oppose this bill. Here is a link to more marijuana information from our national Eagle Forum website. View marijuana flier here. See the AL Attorney General’s letter to lawmakers to oppose Medical Marijuana

MANDATORY IMMUNIZATION DATABASE

SPONSOR: Rep. April Weaver Read HB103. Sen. Tim Melson Read SB56

DESCRIPTION: This bill would require health care providers to report vaccines administered to the immunization registry and would require health care providers to review the registry before a vaccine is administered unless the health care provider has a bi-directional interface with the registry.

STATUS: It passed out of the House Health Committee and is headed to the House floor.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION: We do not view this bill as a “Vax” vs. “Antivax” bill. Our issues lie with (1.) the inability to opt out and (2.) that patient information will be shared from the AL Department of Public Health which is not required to comply with HIPPAA guidelines in the way they collect, monitor and use patient private health information. Additionally, (3.) the types of personally identifiable information that would be collected are too invasive.

ACTION: Contact your House Rep and ask him/her to vote no.

MORE INFO: For a detailed breakdown of this bill you can view these links: Keep Your Politics Out Of Our Healthcare: Update on SB56 and Spotlight on HB103: Immunization Tracking Bill.

BANNING FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION

NO CHANGE FROM LAST WEEK’S UPDATE

SPONSOR: Rep. Laura Hall Read HB53

DESCRIPTION: Relating to crimes and offenses; to establish the crime of female genital mutilation.

STATUS: Rep. Laura Hall’s HB53 prohibiting Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and making it a Class B felony was amended in committee and passed on the House floor on Thursday. View the roll call vote here. Rep. Rod Scott who has introduced a bill prohibiting FGM over the past few sessions, also making it a Class B felony, has introduced his bill HB170 which is still in committee.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION: We are supportive of prohibiting this atrocity and will follow these bills and make the necessary contacts along the way.

RESOLUTION: PORNOGRAPHY AS A PUBLIC HEALTH CRISIS

SPONSOR: Rep Danny Garrett

DESCRIPTION: The resolution declaring Pornography as a Public Health Crisis

STATUS: This resolution was in the Rules Committee on Thursday but it was carried over until next week so committee members could read it. Please call the House Rules Committee members and urge each of them to vote” yes” to send this resolution to the House floor.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION: This is one of our priority pieces of legislation. Pornography is a public health risk. Please see Fast Fact on Pornography here.

WEEK 3 LEGISLATIVE RADIO UPDATE

Listen to Eagle Forum’s Executive Director, Becky Gerritson discuss highlights from week 3 of the AL legislative session with Tactics Radio host, Caleb Colquitt. (Click on the picture to listen. The clip is from 0:00-33:25.)

VIEW PREVIOUS 2020 AL LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

Week 1 (Feb. 4-6)
Lottery Town Hall (Feb. 12)
Week 2 (Feb 11-13)

FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS.

JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST HERE.

Eagle Forum of Alabama’s public policy work for Alabama families is made possible by generous donations from our supporters. Help us as we stand strong fighting daily for liberty.

Legislative Update 2020 – Week 2

General Legislative Information
Use these links for Alabama Legislative Information Systems Online:
Home Page, State Senators, House Reps, Bills, Listen/Watch online

MAP TO THE AL STATEHOUSE -11 S. UNION ST, MONTGOMERY

Legislative Update: Week 2 (Feb. 11-13)
IN THIS ISSUE:

1. Condolences for two legislators and a Teen Eagle family
2. Status of bills we’re watching
3. EF in the media

This was a sad week for Alabama legislators and Eagle Forum as we grieve the sudden loss of Rep. Terri Collins, husband, Tom, and mourn the sudden loss of 15 year old Matthew Cleghorn, a sibling of two of our Montgomery area Teen Eagles. Rep. Jim Carns lost his wife who was also his high school sweetheart the week before the session began. Please keep all three families in your prayers.

Gender Is Real Legislative Act (GIRL Act)

SPONSOR: Rep Chris Pringle Read HB35.

DESCRIPTION: This bill would provide that public K-12 schools may not participate in, sponsor, or provide coaching staff for interscholastic athletic events at which athletes are allowed to participate in competition against athletes who are of a different biological gender, unless the event specifically includes both biological sexes.

STATUS: This bill had a public hearing on 2/13/20 however there was no motion to vote on it. It is expected to be up for a vote on Wednesday 2/19/20 at 3:00PM in room 206 (State Government Committee).

EF’s POSITION: We support this bill.

ACTION: Call the House State Government Committee members and ask them to support this important bill that protects women.

SEE FAST FACTS FLYER HERE. Flyer is from Parent Resource Guide which you can view here-see page 37 for graphics and p. 40 for end notes.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA

SPONSOR: Sen. Tim Melson Read SB165

DESCRIPTION: This bill would authorize certain residents of this state diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition and designated caregivers to be registered and obtain a medical cannabis card, thereby authorizing the patient to use cannabis for medical use. This bill would establish the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission, establish and administer a patient registry system; issue medical cannabis cards; issue licenses for the cultivating, processing, dispensing,transporting, and testing of medical cannabis; adopt rules; impose restrictions on licensee activity; and generally regulate, administer, and enforce a medical cannabis program in the state.

STATUS: The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a public hearing on Wednesday 2/19/20 at 8:30am in room 325.

EF’s POSITION: We oppose this bill. Here is a link to more marijuana information from our national Eagle Forum website. View marijuana flier here. See the AL Attorney General’s letter to lawmakers to oppose Medical Marijuana:

ACTION: Call the Senate Judiciary Committee and ask them to vote “NO” on this bill.

MANDATORY IMMUNIZATION DATABASE

SPONSOR: Rep. April Weaver Read HB103. Sen. Tim Melson Read SB56

DESCRIPTION: This bill would require health care providers to report vaccines administered to the immunization registry and would require health care providers to review the registry before a vaccine is administered unless the health care provider has a bi-directional interface with the registry.

STATUS: The House Health Committee will hold a public hearing on this bill on Wednesday, 2/19/20 at 10:30am in room 206.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION: We do not view this bill as a “Vax” vs. “Antivax” bill. Our issues lie with (1.) the inability to opt out and (2.) that patient information will be shared from the AL Department of Public Health which is not required to comply with HIPPAA guidelines in the way they collect, monitor and use patient private health information. Additionally, (3.) the types of personally identifiable information that would be collected is outside the scope of what we are comfortable with.

ACTION: Contact House Health Committee members and ask them to vote “NO”.

MORE INFO: For a detailed breakdown of this bill you can view these links: Keep Your Politics Out Of Our Healthcare: Update on SB56 and Spotlight on HB103: Immunization Tracking Bill.

BANNING FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION

SPONSOR: Rep. Laura Hall Read HB53

DESCRIPTION: Relating to crimes and offenses; to establish the crime of female genital mutilation.

STATUS: Rep. Laura Hall’s HB53 prohibiting Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and making it a Class B felony was amended in committee and passed on the House floor on Thursday. View the roll call vote here. Rep. Rod Scott who has introduced a bill prohibiting FGM over the past few sessions, also making it a Class B felony, has introduced his bill HB170 which is still in committee.

EAGLE FORUM POSITION: We are supportive of prohibiting this atrocity and will follow these bills and make the necessary contacts along the way.

RESOLUTION: PORNOGRAPHY AS A PUBLIC HEALTH CRISIS

The resolution declaring Pornography as a Public Health Crisis passed the Senate on the first day of the session. After its passage, reporter Kyle Whitmire from AL.com wrote a disparaging piece about it. His article spurred several people to write articles is support.

Yellowhammer: State Rep. Garrett: Pornography is a public health crisis
AL.com: Yes, pornography is indeed a public health emergency
AL.com: Alabama’s resolution to declare pornography a public health crisis is urgently needed

Avemariaradio.net: Listen to this excellent interview with Melea Stephens, Birmingham Marriage and Family Counselor and board member of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, as she explains why pornography IS a public health crisis. (Interview is from 17:40 min-35:00)

The sponsors of the Senate and House resolutions will be on Alabama Public Television’s Capitol Journal Friday night at 7:30 discussing this important issue. We encourage you to watch the episode. The resolution will be brought to the House floor in the near future and we will keep you posted.

Eagle Forum Participated in a Lottery Town Hall on ABC 33/40

Click picture to watch.

This Town Hall: Your Voice Your Future program focused on why Alabama is the only southern state now without a lottery, what it would take to make the change, and how current laws and politics factor into the current status. It’s a complicated matter and this panel explains the intricacies as well as the pros and cons for our state. Eagle Forum has always opposed a statewide lottery.

WEEK 2 LEGISLATIVE RADIO UPDATE

Listen to Eagle Forum’s Executive Director, Becky Gerritson discuss highlights from week 2 of the AL Legislative Session with Tactics Radio host, Caleb Colquitt. (Click on the picture to listen. The clip is from 0:00-27:00.

VIEW PREVIOUS 2020 AL LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

Week 1 (Feb. 4-6)
Lottery Town Hall (Feb. 12)

FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS.

JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST HERE.

Eagle Forum of Alabama’s public policy work for Alabama families is made possible by generous donations from our supporters. Help us as we stand strong fighting daily for liberty.

Legislative Update 2020 – Week 1

General Legislative Information
Use these links for Alabama Legislative Information Systems Online:
Home Page, State Senators, House Reps, Bills, Listen/Watch online

Eagle Forum Priorities for the 2020 Legislative Session

Eagle Forum is committed to keeping you informed regularly about legislation that is moving its way through the Alabama legislature. Our legislative priorities for the 2020 Regular Session are: A resolution declaring Pornography as a Public Health Crisis, banning female genital mutilation (FGM) and Anti-Human trafficking legislation. We will be keeping an eye on lottery/gambling legislation, medical marijuana, Pre-K-12 grade education issues and other legislation that effects the welfare, security and freedoms of Alabama families.

Legislative Update: Week 1 (Feb. 4-6)

Resolution Declaring Pornography as a Public Health Crisis

EXCELLENT NEWS: On the first day of the legislative session the AL Senate unanimously passed a resolution declaring pornography as a public health crisis. This is one of our priority pieces of legislation. The Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE), Dawn Hawkins, wrote a national press release praising this move and explains why it is so important that the AL House do the same. Read the NCOSE press release here.

WEEKLY LEGISLATIVE RADIO UPDATE

Listen to Eagle Forum’s Executive Director, Becky Gerritson discuss highlights from week 1 of the AL Legislative Session with Tactics Radio host, Caleb Colquitt. (Click on the picture to listen. The clip is from 0.00-30.33)

FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS.

JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST HERE.

Eagle Forum of Alabama’s public policy work for Alabama families is made possible by generous donations from our supporters. Help us as we stand strong fighting daily for liberty.

Copyright © 2020 Eagle Forum of Alabama, All rights reserved.

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Collectivism in Alabama Politics

By Deborah Love

This week has been “Alabama Week” on The Daily Show, a week devoted to the mocking of Alabama and especially its recent political scandals. I suspect many Alabamians have laughed along with Trevor Noah, half from nervous embarrassment and half from frustration. The hostile spotlight on Alabama brings my thoughts back to one memory from a time when I interned with Senator Jeff Sessions as an eager college student, excited to make a positive difference. One of the first phone calls I received was from an angry man who asked me where I was from, to which I quickly replied with a proud and positive voice, “I am from Alabama.” The man responded “You’re a barefoot, inbred, pregnant woman.” The man continued to yell before eventually hanging up. When I looked up his area code I realized he was not from Alabama. So I wondered why he thought such horrible things about a person he had never met. I thought it was strange that he hated the politics of my state so much he would insult a stranger.

I realized later on that this man’s prejudice and hatred of me was based solely on a sort of collectivist logic. By using that term, I don’t mean merely leftward progressivism – collectivism is the idea that people can be reduced to, and explained according to group interests. It is an idea which promotes stereotypes, prejudice, and hatred. We can all think of examples that permeate the current political and cultural dialogue which are based in this fallacy. If you look on social media you will see political or cultural discussions quickly escalate to these broad stereotypical conclusions that judge an individual or entire group from a collectivist lens. Following are some examples that I have recently seen online. Rebekah Caldwell Mason is like many other women in Montgomery politics. Republicans are all corrupt. Black men are all thugs. Millennials are lazy and want everything for free. Democrats hate America. Libertarians are pot heads. Conservatives are extremists. The media is all liberal and biased. These statements are the result of acceptance of the idea of collectivism; they are not based in reason. We all know that there are caring, loving, smart and well-intentioned people in each of these categories. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

The acceptance of this tribalist sort of collectivism has led to a negative perception of Alabama. The people of Alabama are not synonymous with the state government. Mike Hubbard nor Robert Bentley upheld their duty to the people of Alabama, and they both misled the public; but Alabama is much more than its government. The entire state should not be judged by a few very powerful people. As an Alabamian, I am proud to be from Alabama. I am proud of what private individuals in Alabama are doing right this moment. Our religious institutions, private philanthropic organizations, schools, neighborhoods, and families are all made up of individuals. We are the full sum of each and every man, women, and child, divisible, unique, of value and merit, but with mistakes included .

Progress more often comes in form like a general current, as each individual Alabamian every day makes decision after decision, and act after act. Sometimes these decisions and acts are not the best, but if, as I believe, most days good people do good things, the general tide of progress will rise ever higher and higher. This is thanks to the merits of individual people, each making innumerable positive decisions each and every day. Alabama’s identity does not reside within the Governor’s mansion, but with each and every individual Alabamian. It is because I reject collectivism and collective guilt this week I can still say that I am glad to be an Alabamian. It may be trite to reference the band Lynryd Skynryd, but the outsiders from Florida had a great point – the actions of “the Governor”, or indeed any politician, cannot be held to condemn an entire people.

Deborah Love is Executive Director of Eagle Forum of Alabama, a Conservative grass-roots public policy organization dedicated to sound public policy solutions in Alabama and Washington DC.