Imaginary Georgia Congressional hearing transcript on horse racing

Imaginary Georgia Congressional hearing transcript on horse racing

March 21, 2021

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by Trey Nosrac

March 12, 2021

Concord Room

Banging of gavel: (3:46)

Chairman Chapman: (03:48)

Good morning everyone. If committee members will all please find their seats, we will get started with our public hearing. I want to ask those in the back of the room, the media, et cetera, to please keep respectfully silent. We’re going to call the committee to order and start with a silent prayer.

Chairman Chapman: (03:49)

Amen. I would like to thank the witness, Mister Nosrac, for visiting to provide us with testimony today. I ask the clerk to read the actionSB30Rural Georgia Jobs and Growth Act.

Clerk: (03:50)

A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Title 50 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to the state government, so as to provide for pari-mutuel horse racing in this state at a limited number of licensed equestrian centers; to create the Georgia Horse Racing Commission; to provide for the comprehensive regulation of pari-mutuel and related activities; to provide for legislative findings; to provide for definitions; to enter into the Interstate Compact on Licensure of Participants in Live Racing with Pari-mutuel Wagering; to provide a short title; to provide for related matters; to provide for a contingent effective date; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

Chairman Chapman: (03:52)

Each side will have a questioner, and then we will rotate. Mr. Nosrac, would you care to make an opening statement.

Witness Nosrac: (03:53)

No, except to say the Atlanta traffic is a bitch.

(Laughter)

Chairman Chapman: (03:54)

Well, you will find no resistance to that opinion. Let us begin with our Representatives. May I remind the questioners, the clerk will record these proceedings. The first round of questioning goes to senior Representative Lester Foghorn of the 14th district standing in opposition.

Representative Foghorn: (03:55)

Thank you, Mister Chairman. My first question is this: Now, son, we have been down this road to ruin in Georgia at least eight times in committee meetings like this one. We have been down the road so often that I can’t help stating for the record this is a complete waste of time and taxpayer’s money. Why in the world would we want to go through this horse racing nonsense again?

Witness Nosrac: (03:56)

Well, sir, thank you for your open-mindedness. Let me say that this horse racing issue is like a simple math problem. Just because you got the answer wrong eight times does not mean you can’t answer correctly this time.

Representative Foghorn: (03:56)

Whoa, Nellie. Son, let me make this simple and speak in good old-fashioned English with a touch of a drawl, now listen close, Georgia don’t do gambling.

Witness Nosrac: (03:56)

With respect, sir, I’m not your son, and Georgia has had a state lottery for 30 years. You voted on the issue.

Representative Foghorn: (03:57)

I didn’t vote for gambling then, and I will not vote for dirty dealing and crime and backwoods nonsense now.

Witness Nosrac: (03:57)

I think you are confusing raising and racing beautiful horses with meth labs.

Representative Foghorn: (03:57)

There is no confusion on my part. We respect the FAMILY and HISTORY down here.

Witness Nosrac: (03:58)

Good to know. I represent a sport called harness horse racing that is very family oriented. This type of horse racing was the most popular sport in America at the turn of the last century and has been around since the Civil War. You might have voted incorrectly on joining the Confederacy, too.

(laughter)

Representative Foghorn: (03:58)

Why don’t you just shut your piehole, you wise-cracking jackass, go…

(Shouting) Banging of gavel: (03:59)

Chairman Chapman: (04:00)

Gentlemen, gentlemen. That will be enough of that. Let us keep in mind that C-Span cameras are recording this, and let us conduct ourselves accordingly. Representative Foghorn, your time has expired. Next questioner: Representative Davis from district 31, a proponent of the legislation on horse racing. Representative Davis, you have five minutes.

Representative Davis: (04:01)

I’m enjoying the show so I will reserve my time. I just ordered popcorn.

Chairman Chapman: (0:4:01)

Then we move to Representative Crawdad from the 27th district. Representative Crawdad… Representative Crawdad? Would one of the learned members give him a nudge?

Representative Crawdad: (04:01)

Huh? What? Er…I support the Flag (shuffling papers). Oh yes, horse racing. Bad, very bad. Keep the pool halls out of River City. Er…let me ask the gentleman, why would we want to introduce horse racing to our beautiful pecan state?

Witness Nosrac: (04:01)

Money.

Representative Crawdad: (04:02)

What money? That was a personal loan from a constituent, and er…(Clears throat) Oh, wait, what money in gambling and horse racing are you referring to?

Witness Nosrac: (04:02)

Last night in my hotel room in Macon, I wagered $200 on the Hawks to cover the points. Tonight, I will wager $100 on a horse race.

Representative Crawdad: (04:03)

You can’t wager legally in Georgia.

Witness Nosrac: (04:03)

You are correct, congressman. I joined the 2.2 million citizens of Georgia who wagered more than $4.8 billion last year offshore.

Representative Crawdad: (04:03)

My friend, you could be arrested for illegal Internet gambling.

Witness Nosrac: (04:04)

I would be the first. Your honor, am I allowed to ask the esteemed Representative how much revenue from that $4.8 billion wagered in your non-gambling state benefitted Georgia’s citizens? Trust me. You will not need a calculator. The answer is zero.

Chairman Chapman: (04:04)

I want to remind the speakers to address the chair.

Representative Crawdad: (04:05)

We don’t want elitists of your sort coming down to tell us how to run our state.

Witness Nosrac: (04:05)

Well, first, I drove up here, from Macon. Second, this elitist was the eighth child born and raised in Pigeon Toed Hollar, Lousianna. Please don’t give me that deplorable bull…

Gavel hammers repeatedly: (04:05)

Chairman Chapman: (04:05)

Gentlemen, please. Let us take a short break and reconvene in 10 minutes when Representative Martin of Georgia’s 17th district will resume for the proponents.

Gavel: (04:06)

Chairman Chapman: (04:06)
Welcome back. I believe Representative Martin is next.

Representative Martin: (04:07)

Just let me say I love horses and horse racing, and my district needs jobs. Also, allow me to say this is the most fun I have had in a legislative hearing since Congressman Oxnard showed up drunk while wearing his suspenders over his coat jacket. Reserve my time. Let the show continue.

Chairman Chapman: (04:07)
I believe Representative, um, Reynolds is next.

Representative Reynolds: (04:07)

Thank you, Mister Chairman, and thank you to the witness for his unusual presentation.

Witness Nosrac: (04:07)

No problem.

Representative Reynolds: (04:07))

Exactly who invited you to his hearing?

Witness Nosrac: (04:08)

Representative J.C. Davis. We are together in a different sort of meeting every Tuesday and Thursday. J.C knows that I am a horse owner and a horse gambler.

Representative Reynolds: (04:08)

Are you being paid?

Witness Nosrac: (04:08)

Nope.

Representative Reynolds:(04:09)

Proposals for horse racing, casinos, and movie companies are some of the many topics we deliberate on in this body that require tax credits or subsidies.

Witness Nosrac: (04:09)

Have you read this legislation?

Representative Reynolds: (04:10)

I resent your tone. I have skimmed over the legislation.

Witness Nosrac: (04:10)

You must have skimmed too fast because this asks nothing but a chance for horse racing.Why NOT allow horse racing to try to take root, and horse farms to grow, and money to flow? Seriously, what does Georgia have to lose if the horse business flops? Businesses flop every day. This proposal is all private investment, plenty of private investment with no public money.

Representative Reynolds: (04:11)

One thing leads to another. Racetracks always have a casino attached.

Witness Nosrac: (04:12)

The people behind these proposed racetracks believe they can make a go of it without casinos.

Representative Reynolds:(04:12)

There are many constituents against gambling, deafening ones.

Witness Nosrac: (04:13)

Not nearly as many as there were in 1957, polling shows strong support in Georgia for horse racing. Let’s cut to the chase. All you need to do at this point is raise your hand to allow the issue to proceed. You will not lose a primary or general election because you decide to let voters decide if they want horseracing. If I were a Georgia voter, I would be miffed if you did not let me vote.

Chairman Chapman: (04:14)

Time has expired. Our final questioner standing in support of the issue, representing Georgia’s 8th district, is Representative Wilson. Mrs. Wilson, you have five minutes.

Representative Wilson: (04:15)

Thank you, Mister Chairman. I will follow the words of my favorite president and politician, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. I will be sincere, be brief, and be seated. The witness has clarified the option. I can only reiterate the gist of this matter. We should let the people decide if they want horse racing in our state. I reserve my time.

Chairman Chapman: (04:16)

Then at this point, I will release the witness with our thanks, giving him time to beat the rush hour traffic, and we have set a record for the fastest congressional hearing of my career. Meeting adjourned.

Gavel Bangs: (04:17)

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