Mississippi Tea Partiers Push Welfare Drug Testing Initiative

Mississippi Tea Party groups are busily collecting signatures for a ballot initiative that would require welfare recipients and state employees to undergo drug testing. The measure, officially known as Ballot Initiative #33, is part of a broader push by Mississippi Tea Partiers against "un-Constitutional welfare programs" and illegal immigration. The initiative would also require anyone receiving state benefits to prove his or her US citizenship.

(image via wikimedia.org)
While the umbrella Mississippi Tea Party is playing a role in supporting the initiative campaign, most of the energy behind it appears to be based in the Mississippi Gulf Coast 912 Project, an influential South Mississippi Tea Party group affiliated with conservative former Fox News program host Glenn Beck's national 912 Project.

The Mississippi Tea Party sent a December letter to legislators demanding that they take action to drug test welfare recipients, act against illegal immigrants, reactivate the legislature's un-American activities panel, and nullify a number of federal programs under the rubric of state sovereignty, among other proposals. When the legislature failed to pass welfare drug testing, Ballot Initiative #33 was the result.

"Initiative #33 would amend the Mississippi Constitution to require that persons receiving public assistance, as well as state contractors, subcontractors, and state employees, must undergo random drug testing," says the initiative's official summary. "Failing two drug tests results in loss of benefits. Persons not currently receiving public assistance must pass drug testing before receiving benefits. This initiative also requires that persons residing in the state illegally are prohibited from receiving public assistance or state salary of any kind."

The initiative, a proposed constitutional amendment, is broader than the failed bill it substitutes for. It also includes state contractors, subcontractors, and employees.

The Mississippi Gulf Coast 912 Project needs to collect 90,000 valid voter signatures by mid-October, which is the deadline for getting the initiative on the 2012 ballot. If organizers can't gather 90,000 signatures by mid-October, but can get over the top by the next deadline, mid-December, they could qualify it for the 2012 ballot.

The random, suspicionless drug testing of welfare recipients was thrown out by a federal appeals court as unconstitutional -- a violation of the Fourth Amendment's proscription against unwarranted searches -- when Michigan tried it a decade ago. Another such program went into effect July 1 in Florida, and will face a similar constitutional challenge. If Initiative #33 is ever enacted, Mississippi taxpayers will be the next to have to defend an already invalidated program.

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Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

When it comes to being a drug

When it comes to being a drug warrior, it is impossible to avoid being a hypocrite. For shame.

Wow, this news story is

Wow, this news story is crazy!

Presuming that this is being pushed by the Mississippi Gulf Coast 912 Project, then & IDK which is worse, the glaring Hypocrisy or the amazing Irony?

They're an anti-"Big Government" group, the website is 'citizenliberty.com' and their 'About Us' page a virtual plethora of hypocrisy, contradiction, and irony.

And they re-state the aims of the "9-12 Project", and the wiki detailing that group - is chock full of *ahem* "logic".

"Our goal is to educate and inform ... blah,blah,blah ... and through peaceful means take steps to restore the constitutional form of limited federal government that was provided by the founding fathers."

The "Nine Principles" & "Twelve Values" of the 912 project (which sadly, is much bigger than just this Mississippi Group) contain multiple "/facepalm" phrases & "/headexplodes" statements... many of these are reasonable -- right up until the point => when you go and try to connect them & package them all up together!

*sigh* /facedesk

Makes no sense

Is this just a law for spite? It is just going to cost tax payers more money. Drug testing is expensive (especially if they have to fail two). Not every welfare recipient is going to come up positive either. Not to mention there are many ways to pass a drug test if oyu are taking drugs. This is STUPID!!!

I hear that for fear of

I hear that for fear of retaliation against the urinalysists, the tinkle-tenders get to wear white hoodies to hide themselves from their naked peeing victims.

Perhaps they should be called the Pee Party instead? ;-)

That Tea Party is fake!

The real tea party belives in freedom and liberty.

The corporation tea party and the right wing owned media hate freedom and is behind this.PROPAGANDA!

The real Tea Party candidate is Ron Paul and he is for ending the War on Drugs.

The corporation tea party wants to turn America into a church/police state and their leaders are Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann, Sarah Palin, and Herman Cain.

Don't be fooled by the right-winger owned media! They hate Ron Paul and Gary Johnson because Ron and Gary want to end the drug war and the for profit law enforcement activities.

(I recommend tar and a feather pillow for their writers!)

Glen Beck needs to be deported or put in a cage...he is a threat to our freedom and national security!

Still thinking about voting for Democrats?

Joe Biden is a drug warrior too and the president has no balls!

Ron Paul and Gary Johnson in 2012  Get off your heinie and support them! Give hell to their freedom hating opponents!

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