Friday, September 23, 2011

Deal appoints state rep, 'Irania' founder to pardons and paroles board

Posted By on Fri, Sep 23, 2011 at 8:59 AM

State Rep. James Mills, R-Gainesville
A moment of silence, y'all. State Rep. James Mills, R-Gainesville, is leaving the Gold Dome.

Gov. Nathan Deal yesterday announced that the Gainesville Republican will succeed Gale Buckner on the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles, the state body that decides whether a person gets to walk out of prison — or even avoid lethal injection. The gig comes with a lot of responsibility and, according to the AJC, a more than $100,000 salary. The appointment to the state board, which earlier this week denied clemency to death-row inmate Troy Davis, requires the frequent Golden Sleaze winner to vacate his seat.

And it's such a loss! During Mills' nearly 20 years under the Gold Dome, the self-storage facility owner and jedi master had a penchant for introducing legislation aimed at making Georgia perhaps the least hospitable state for undocumented immigrants. Among the measures:

* Giving police the power to confiscate undocumented immigrants' vehicles (Where were these undocumented immigrants coming from? "Iraq, Iran, Irania, Jordan," Mills said in 2008. "We don't know where they're from." We can guarantee they're not from "Irania.")
* Requiring proof of citizenship to vote — a bill which opponents said was unnecessary and equated to an indirect poll tax on low-income and elderly residents
* Stipulating that driver's license exams only be provided in English

Perhaps Mills' greatest achievement: Making us chortle with a bill that would require owners of certain "dangerous" marsupials obtain a permit and insurance. The legislation included this memorable line: "The following animals are considered to be inherently dangerous to human beings: Kangaroos, wallabies, wallaroos." We won't even get into the bills dealing with women's reproductive issues — i.e. allowing people to adopt embryos — proposed by Mills.

Good luck to all the men and women who will appear in front of Mills in his new role.

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