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GAGOP: ban unlimited gifts from lobbyists

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The Georgia Republican Party closed out its weekend convention by adopting as its official position that unlimited gifts to lawmakers from lobbyists should be banned.

One of two ethics questions griping convention delegates, the Georgia GOP’s executive committee adopted a formal resolution on Saturday that urged legislators to impose a “reasonable” ceiling on lobbyist swag.

“We can send a strong message that the Georgia Republican Party is for tough ethics reform and that we are a party of principle and ethical government,” Georgia tea party organizer Debbie Dooley, who filed an ethics complaint against Senate Rules Committee chief Dan Balfour earlier this week, said of the vote.

Party officials, meanwhile, have been tight-lipped on this and other resolutions confirmed by the executive committee.

An effort was underway by some tea party organizers for the party to call for a $100 gift cap, mirroring the legislation that died in the Senate earlier this year. That bill’s lead sponsor, Republican Senator Josh McKoon of Columbus, was elected a delegate to the national nominating convention later this year in Tampa, Florida.

- James Richardson