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Latest from Kyle Wingfield

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Opinion: Delta tax controversy is a bad, new twist on an old awkward dance
 In the beginning, the Georgia Legislature created an ill-advised tax on jet fuel. Ever since then, lawmakers have been tinkering with the tax in even more ill-advised ways -- culminating with their sudden showdown with Delta Air Lines over the latter’s unrelated fight with the National Rifle Association. Before we get to the gory specifics...

10:37 PM Monday, Feb. 26, 2018

In the beginning, the Georgia Legislature created an ill-advised tax on jet fuel. Ever since then, lawmakers have been tinkering with the tax in even more ill-advised ways -- culminating with their sudden showdown with Delta Air Lines over the latter’s unrelated fight with the National Rifle Association. Before we get to the gory specifics...
Opinion: School-choice bills should advance, despite ‘austerity cuts’
 This is shaping up as a pretty decent legislative session on a number of fronts. There’s even a chance we’ll see the first full steps forward on school choice in a few years.  The House last Thursday approved higher funding for public charter schools approved by the state, which has languished well below the state average...

1:47 PM Monday, Feb. 26, 2018

This is shaping up as a pretty decent legislative session on a number of fronts. There’s even a chance we’ll see the first full steps forward on school choice in a few years.  The House last Thursday approved higher funding for public charter schools approved by the state, which has languished well below the state average...
Opinion: ‘Austerity cuts’ are no reason to reject school-choice bills
 This is shaping up as a pretty decent legislative session on a number of fronts. There’s even a chance we’ll see the first full steps forward on school choice in a few years. The House on Thursday approved higher funding for public charter schools approved by the state, which has languished well below the state average for years...

5:00 PM Friday, Feb. 23, 2018

This is shaping up as a pretty decent legislative session on a number of fronts. There’s even a chance we’ll see the first full steps forward on school choice in a few years. The House on Thursday approved higher funding for public charter schools approved by the state, which has languished well below the state average for years...
Opinion: Bill to protect faith-based adoption agencies should concentrate minds at the Capitol
 The Georgia Senate is scheduled to vote today on Senate Bill 375, a measure to prevent faith-based adoption agencies from being forced to choose between placing children with parents who don’t comply with their religious beliefs, and closing their doors. As is the case with any bill involving religious liberty these days, it is opposed...

1:52 PM Friday, Feb. 23, 2018

The Georgia Senate is scheduled to vote today on Senate Bill 375, a measure to prevent faith-based adoption agencies from being forced to choose between placing children with parents who don’t comply with their religious beliefs, and closing their doors. As is the case with any bill involving religious liberty these days, it is opposed...
Opinion: Gun politics need less shouting, more persuasion
 On one of our trips to Atlanta while living overseas, my wife and I were waiting to re-check our bags after clearing customs. The line was held up by a older man of Asian descent who clearly didn’t speak or read English, and didn’t understand he was supposed to remove his laptop computer from its bag before placing it on the belt...

7:02 PM Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018

On one of our trips to Atlanta while living overseas, my wife and I were waiting to re-check our bags after clearing customs. The line was held up by a older man of Asian descent who clearly didn’t speak or read English, and didn’t understand he was supposed to remove his laptop computer from its bag before placing it on the belt...
Opinion: Deal, legislators get it right with latest tax-reform proposal
 Well, they did it. After going back and forth about how to address a projected $1 billion-per-year increase to state coffers from the federal tax reform, Georgia’s top lawmakers said Tuesday they will do the right thing and cut the top income-tax rate. The announcement was made by Gov. Nathan Deal, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Speaker David...

8:19 PM Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018

Well, they did it. After going back and forth about how to address a projected $1 billion-per-year increase to state coffers from the federal tax reform, Georgia’s top lawmakers said Tuesday they will do the right thing and cut the top income-tax rate. The announcement was made by Gov. Nathan Deal, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Speaker David...
Opinion: A different kind of waiting period when it comes to guns and mass shootings
 It has been five days since the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., and so my self-imposed restriction on posting about it has now expired. Now, to those of you who demanded we talk about it on this blog, let’s talk. Let’s start with why I waited five days to write about it. It’s...

7:02 PM Monday, Feb. 19, 2018

It has been five days since the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., and so my self-imposed restriction on posting about it has now expired. Now, to those of you who demanded we talk about it on this blog, let’s talk. Let’s start with why I waited five days to write about it. It’s...
Opinion: Why Georgia Republicans changed their minds about transit
 A guy from Blue Ridge, a guy from Dawsonville, a guy from East Cobb, a woman from Johns Creek and a woman from Dacula walk into a bar — I mean, a press briefing — to talk about a bill. They’re all Republicans. Care to guess what the bill’s about?  If you guessed “expanding mass transit,” you deserve...

5:30 PM Friday, Feb. 16, 2018

A guy from Blue Ridge, a guy from Dawsonville, a guy from East Cobb, a woman from Johns Creek and a woman from Dacula walk into a bar — I mean, a press briefing — to talk about a bill. They’re all Republicans. Care to guess what the bill’s about?  If you guessed “expanding mass transit,” you deserve...
Opinion: How Republicans came to see transit as a viable option

5:00 PM Friday, Feb. 16, 2018

A guy from Blue Ridge, a guy from Dawsonville, a guy from East Cobb, a woman from Johns Creek and a woman from Dacula walk into a bar — I mean, a press briefing — to talk about a bill. They’re all Republicans. Care to guess what the bill’s about? If you guessed “expanding mass transit,” you deserve an extra...
Opinion: Georgia must get tax-reform basics right the first time
 A great deal of GOP orthodoxy has been challenged over the past couple of years: on the merits of free trade, on the value of international alliances such as NATO, and on the urgency of taming federal deficits and debt, among other things.  But one constant, at least, has remained. The income tax should err on the side of being simple...

11:57 AM Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018

A great deal of GOP orthodoxy has been challenged over the past couple of years: on the merits of free trade, on the value of international alliances such as NATO, and on the urgency of taming federal deficits and debt, among other things.  But one constant, at least, has remained. The income tax should err on the side of being simple...
Opinion: State legislators must get tax reform right the first time

8:15 PM Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018

A great deal of GOP orthodoxy has been challenged over the past couple of years: on the merits of free trade, on the value of international alliances such as NATO, and on the urgency of taming federal deficits and debt, among other things. But one constant, at least, has remained. The income tax should err on the side of being simple rather...
Opinion: State should take advantage of opportunity federal tax reform presents
 “It’s now or never” is a phrase one should be wary of applying to legislation. Even more so than with perennially close-but-no-cigar sports teams — and, sadly, we have plenty of those locally — “there’s always next year” more befits bills that face long odds at the present time.  But I...

10:56 AM Monday, Feb. 12, 2018

“It’s now or never” is a phrase one should be wary of applying to legislation. Even more so than with perennially close-but-no-cigar sports teams — and, sadly, we have plenty of those locally — “there’s always next year” more befits bills that face long odds at the present time.  But I...
Opinion: Federal tax reform gives Georgia a golden opportunity

5:00 PM Friday, Feb. 09, 2018

“It’s now or never” is a phrase one should be wary of applying to legislation. Even more so than with perennially close-but-no-cigar sports teams — and, sadly, we have plenty of those locally — “there’s always next year” more befits bills that face long odds at the present time. But I may have...
Opinion: Congress keeps the lights on by passing a bloated mess
 I was tempted this morning to declare the death of the tea party (2009-2018) after the spending bonanza Congress approved in the wee hours of Friday. But given that 67 Republicans in the House and 16 in the Senate voted against the bill, perhaps “death” is a bit overstated. It might be more accurate to say those who still...

3:09 PM Friday, Feb. 09, 2018

I was tempted this morning to declare the death of the tea party (2009-2018) after the spending bonanza Congress approved in the wee hours of Friday. But given that 67 Republicans in the House and 16 in the Senate voted against the bill, perhaps “death” is a bit overstated. It might be more accurate to say those who still...
Opinion: The first thing Atlanta needs to do about housing affordability

8:16 PM Wednesday, Feb. 07, 2018

Atlanta has a problem with housing affordability. The city’s new mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, campaigned on spending $1 billion to address the problem. A fat lot of good even that large a sum will do, though, if the biggest threat to affordability isn’t solved in a very real way. Recall last summer, when homeowners across Fulton...
Opinion: The first thing Atlanta needs to do for housing affordability
 Atlanta has a problem with housing affordability, as most everyone seems to recognize. The city’s new mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, even campaigned on spending $1 billion to address the problem.  A fat lot of good even that large a sum will do, though, if the biggest threat to homeowners’ finances isn’t solved in a very...

4:04 PM Wednesday, Feb. 07, 2018

Atlanta has a problem with housing affordability, as most everyone seems to recognize. The city’s new mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, even campaigned on spending $1 billion to address the problem.  A fat lot of good even that large a sum will do, though, if the biggest threat to homeowners’ finances isn’t solved in a very...
Opinion: Senate’s objections to adoption bill don’t withstand scrutiny
 I never like to start an argument by assuming bad intentions on someone else’s part. So I take state senators at their word when they say they worry allowing more adoptive parents to cover certain living expenses for birth mothers will drive up the cost of adoptions.  I just think they’re wrong. The bill that has loomed over...

3:29 PM Monday, Feb. 05, 2018

I never like to start an argument by assuming bad intentions on someone else’s part. So I take state senators at their word when they say they worry allowing more adoptive parents to cover certain living expenses for birth mothers will drive up the cost of adoptions.  I just think they’re wrong. The bill that has loomed over...
Opinion: What ‘the memo’ tells us (and doesn’t tell us) about FBI and Trump
 We now have “the memo.” Click here to read it, not that I expect it to change a single person’s mind about anything.  The biggest claims in the document -- which was created by Rep. Devin Nunes, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, and released Friday after President Trump declassified the information within...

7:16 PM Friday, Feb. 02, 2018

We now have “the memo.” Click here to read it, not that I expect it to change a single person’s mind about anything.  The biggest claims in the document -- which was created by Rep. Devin Nunes, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, and released Friday after President Trump declassified the information within...
Opinion: Senators off-base with adoption-bill objections

5:00 PM Friday, Feb. 02, 2018

I never like to start an argument by assuming bad intentions on someone else’s part. So I take state senators at their word when they say they worry allowing more adoptive parents to cover certain living expenses for birth mothers will drive up the cost of adoptions. I just think they’re wrong. The bill that has loomed over this...
Opinion: Giving SOTU credit where SOTU credit is due

9:30 PM Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018

It’s become fashionable to pine for the days, long ago, when the State of the Union was a letter the president sent to the Congress each year rather than the spectacle it has become. Basically, two types of people make these calls: partisans who resent the rhetorical opportunity the occasion provides the president, and policy wonks...
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