Whoops.  It looks like Nunn’s campaign strategy got leaked to National Review.  The entire campaign plan is below the fold.  Enjoy! [click to continue…]

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This week’s Courier Herald column:

Republicans finished their unsettled nominating business last Tuesday, selecting “outsider” David Perdue as their choice for U.S. Senate, Richard Woods for State School Superintendent, and a host of others for State House, Senate, and other local offices.  While the candidates are now settled, a few questions remain about the party itself.

While most county, district, and state GOP bylaws prohibit official endorsements, it’s safe to say that Jack Kingston was the choice of those that make up the party establishment.  That extends well beyond the pejorative use of the term used by Tea Party leaders and talk radio hosts.  In fact, it extends to their doorstep.

The leaders of Georgia’s most prominent Tea Party organization and RedState.com Editor & WSB radio Host Erick Erickson sided with the same candidate as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the bulk of the Georgia GOP’s finance team.

Kingston also managed official endorsements and campaign efforts and appearances from Karen Handel and Congressman Phil Gingrey.  Election day brought word that even Paul Broun considered Kingston “the Conservative choice”.  (As a reminder, I – equally inconsequentially – also endorsed Jack.)

It seemed that everyone was behind Jack Kingston.  Everyone – except a majority of the voters. [click to continue…]

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Boy was it warm this weekend, a wee bit different than earlier in the week. Hopefully everyone was able to stay cool. Besides the recovery of my stolen Jeep, here’s what else happened over the weekend.

Georgia

Hey look we made top 12! Wait a sec, how many Governor’s races are actually going on?
It’s a good thing we have a State Charter School Commission.
Want to play Swamp People in Georgia? Now you can.
Everybody’s talking about the Senate race, from England to California.
Apparently “It’s for the children” doesn’t work if they have tans and speak Spanish.

National/International

Highway funding and cocktails.
Plagiarism shouldn’t really be the question.
Let’s talk about that impeachment thing.
This Ebola outbreak is getting serious. (here and here)
The EU has increased sanctions on Russia.

Everything Else

Hey look, Georgia doesn’t have the worst transit system in America. Hooray for Detroit!
That’s a whole lot of bugs that like beer.

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Rasmussen spent last week polling Georgia’s Governor and Senate races and here’s the results:

Forty-five percent (45%) of Likely Georgia Voters support Carter to Deal’s 44% in the latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey. Three percent (3%) prefer some other candidate in the race, while eight percent (8%) are undecided.

This is the same poll released last week with the below Senate numbers.

Perdue leads with 46% support to Nunn’s 40%. Four percent (4%) like another candidate in the race, and 10% are undecided.

The results are +/- 4%.

Feel free to insult the robots responsible in the comments.

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Editor’s Note:  This guest post was written by Stephen Greenway, who is a rising sophomore at the University of Georgia, majoring in International Affairs.  Stephen is also the Secretary of the Georgia Association of College Republicans.  It is his take on where the Georgia Senate race stands as we head toward the election in November.

Both Nunn and Perdue are Anti-Politicians

Despite their politically powerful families, neither Michelle Nunn nor David Perdue showed much interest in entering Georgia politics before Senator Chambliss announced his retirement in the spring of last year; in fact, both candidates seemed content with their respective work in philanthropy and business. Michelle was serving as the head of a national volunteer organization spearheaded by Bush 41 before she became the democratic nominee; David was a management guru who specialized in reviving large corporations prior to deciding to throw his hat, and part of his self-made fortune, into GOP politics. Both nominees have achieved a great deal in their lives outside of the gold dome and outside of Washington, and it will be thrilling to watch the two of them, both without voting records of any kind, offer their plan of action for our divided nation.

Perdue does what it takes to win

It was surprising to see David Perdue take on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Georgia Republican Party, and win the nomination in the end. It’s obvious that Perdue’s team saw the pathway to 50.1% and went for it, disregarding county GOP straw polls and activists that they knew weren’t going to be on their side no matter what. Perdue didn’t win any big name endorsements, and he didn’t try to. He adopted the concerns of the people he was talking to at his campaign stops into his political platform, and targeted voters who would show up 9 weeks later to vote again. When attacking his opponent, he exposed not only figures that indicated Jack Kingston had fought for district earmarks, but he included data on other members of the Georgia congressional delegation, including former congressman Nathan Deal. He defied the rules, pissed off the party elite, and won.

Nunn will have to speak out

Michelle Nunn easily won her Democratic primary back in May. Leading up to the Republican runoff, Nunn has been busy raising cash and growing her statewide campaign infrastructure. With the general election matchup now set, Nunn will have to speak more clearly about her policy stances and draw clear contrasts between herself and David Perdue. In the past, she has been criticized for avoiding taking positions on issues of controversy and national importance.

With the national media tagging Georgia’s Senate Election as “the race to watch,” Nunn will have to show boldness and unveil the essences of her candidacy. She will undoubtedly attack Perdue’s business record, charging that he is an out-of-touch Romney who has spent his life in pursuit of corporate profits. But she should tread cautiously. Nunn herself was raised in Washington, D.C. Her Perry, GA roots are shallow, and she’s much more associated with Midtown, Atlanta than with the peanut farms of rural Georgia. If she pushes the “too rich and too-out-of-touch” card too hard, it could backfire on her campaign.

Truth be told, there’s no good ole boy or hometown country girl in this race. It’s a sprint between two ivy leaguers and two people who have used their life experience, instead of their political expertise, to win over an incumbent-exhausted electorate.

What kind of race will this be in October?

It is the joy of many politicos to break down each election cycle and try to draw grand conclusions about our nation’s political compass from the races. However, this year’s results have been scattered. From the outcomes of the primaries, there is no neat analysis of where Democrats and Republicans stand in the eyes of the public.

I truly believe the country is in a flux of doubt and cynicism about our world and our government’s ability to deal with extremely complex policy problems that involve billions and affect millions. The outflow of bureaucratic failures from the Obama administration has created cynicism about our national future and disenchantment with both parties. Apolitical citizens have tuned out; the politically engaged are digging in and drifting to opposite extremes.

Where is the silent majority? And who do they support? What kind of government do they wish to have? It is unlikely that Georgia’s Senate Race will reveal all the answers, but it is certain that Georgia will be the battle field on which both sides compete in an election in which the vast majority of voters don’t believe that voting will make a difference. The candidate that convinces Georgians otherwise will win.

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A judge cleared the way Friday for Cobb County to issue bonds to fund taxpayers’ contributions for the new Braves stadium being built just North of Cumberland Mall.  The AJC reports:

The judge overruled objections from about a dozen county residents, who sought to block the public financing plan for the new stadium and the issuance of up to $397 million in bonds to fund construction of the facility, which is scheduled to open in 2017 and has a $622 million budget.

Leonard ruled in a 38-page opinion, released at 5 p.m. Friday, that the exhibit hall authority has the legal right to issue the bonds, that the new stadium is a legitimate public expense, and that its agreement with the county government to pay off the debt is also legal. He overruled 12 legal objections to issuance of the bonds.

I’m sure the opponents will continue to talk about “other plans” to stop the stadium, just like some still claim they are fighting the Falcons new stadium.  These are both done deals folks.  Time to move on.

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Political Insider carried a story this morning of a campaign donor to Nathan Deal who brought an ethics complaint against Jason Carter for a fundraiser invitation sent during the Georgia Legislative Session for an event being held after the session concluded. That rule exists so that legislators and constitutional officers aren’t tempted to grant favor to those that give them money.

So I ask you, what’s more concerning to you, an event after session benefiting the party (Carter’s event), or an event during session benefiting the Republican Governor’s Association, which is is just a group that turns around and buys media for Republican Governors?

I speak, of course, of the “Traffic Tie-Ups: By Ice or By Vice” lecture series that Chris Christie and Nathan Deal presented for close friends, and by that I mean it was 25k to be a co-chair. Who ponied up for that? Well it was companies like Flowers Foods and Select Management Resources, LLC. Man, that last one rings a bell, what do they do? Why they are Payday Lenders. Who else? Comsouth, Cox Enterprises and various alcohol distributors. I bet absolutely none of them had any interest in what was going on during session. Here’s the whole RGA Q1 disclosure, pay special attention to the early March gives.

So who of interest is on the DPG event? Michael Stipe, an economist, someone who might be a model, and others names I don’t recognize. Which of the above strikes you more as a threat to the integrity of the democracy?

Update: It seems that the Carter campaign has responded:

Gov. Deal today refused to reject this frivolous complaint filed by his major donor. As a result, the Carter for Governor campaign is counter-filing with two complaints against Gov. Deal. The first concerns the RGA fundraiser that Gov. Deal held during the legislative session. The second concerns an invitation to a Deal for Governor fundraiser that Gov. Deal’s campaign sent during the legislative session.

So that’s interesting, it appears Deal’s campaign sent out invitations to a fundraising BBQ during session. They were marked paid for by Deal for Governor and solicited donations to the Governor’s campaign. That’s probably a violation. Interestingly, it appears this was an event set up by Deal’s campaign staff, as opposed to the Carter event, which was not.

Both complaints are available here: www.carterforgovernor.com/gov-deals-situational-ethics/.

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Georgia House Speaker David Ralston has decided the members of the committee that will take a look at how the federal government influences education in Georgia. The committee is being named in accordance with H.R. 550, which made it through the lower chamber on the last day of the 2014 session. The committee will be co-chaired by Education Committee Chairman Rep. Brooks Coleman and Higher Education Committee Chair Rep. Carl Rogers.

The creation of the committee was in reaction to the effort led by Sen. William Ligon to remove the influence of Common Core from the state’s public schools. After his Senate Bill 167 failed to clear the House Education Committee, Ligon attempted to modify H.B. 897. When that failed, what came out was the resolution authorizing the study committee.

When announcing the appointments, Ralston said,

Education is one of the most important issues that we address as policymakers. Funding, mandates, and other directives that come down from the federal government, as they relate to education, deserve a thorough review by leaders in our state from time to time. I plan to ask this committee to examine these issues as well as the role the federal government played in the adoption of the common core state standards. I am very excited that this group of leaders and educators agreed to give of their time to do just that, and I look forward to addressing the study committee next week.

The Committee will hold its first meeting on Wednesday, July 30, 2014 from 1:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. in room 606 of the Coverdell Legislative Office Building.

The full list of committee members is below the fold.
[click to continue…]

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Per Lori Geary, Landmark Communications says Nunn has a slight advantage:

Per Rasmussen, Perdue has a slightly bigger advantage:

The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of Likely Georgia Voters finds Perdue with 46% support to Nunn’s 40%. Four percent (4%) like another candidate in the race, and 10% are undecided.(To see survey question wording, click here.)

Feel free to argue over who is right in the comments, remembering it’s still a long, long way to November.

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So, I got this in the email this morning from the Republican National Committee:

Screenshot_2014-07-25-10-52-10

I wasn’t alone. I’ve seen on Facebook where numbers of Republican faithful are getting similar emails. I’ve given to candidates and the state party monetarily, and I guess my service as an officer doesn’t mean squat. I don’t take kindly to threats, and I know my Republican friends don’t either. This email doesn’t exactly make me reach for my wallet and doesn’t do much to endear me to them. Imagine what goes through the mind of swing Republican voters.

Take heed both candidates and Republican Party organizations: don’t send out this type of mass email to get donations. You probably won’t see much return, and you’ll tick off your supporters and alienate possible Republican voters.

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Charlie Cook On #GASEN

July 25, 2014 10:12 am

by Charlie · 14 comments

The Cook Political Report has a lengthy update on where the race for control of the US Senate stands today.  Quick summary is that things are looking pretty good nationally for Republicans.  In Georgia, he expects a tight race:

The field in Georgia is finally set. Businessman David Perdue won the Republican run-off on Tuesday, beating U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston. The Democratic nominee is Michelle Nunn, the former CEO of he Points of Light Foundation and the daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn. Nunn has had this race to herself for a year, which has allowed her to build an organization and a hefty bank account. On the flip side, she hasn’t rally been tested by any engagement with Republicans. That will change very soon. Democrats are happy to have Perdue as a challenger, contending that his record as a CEO of numerous companies gives them plenty of ammunition. He was also somewhat gaffe prone during the primary, although he exhibited more discipline in the run-off.

Not surprisingly, Nunn starts the general election with a lead over Perdue. According to theHuffPollster trend line, Nunn is ahead of Perdue, 44.8 percent to 42.9 percent.

This race is just days old and needs some time to develop, but expect a close contest.

Takeaway:  as expected, this race will be watched by a whole lot of people not living in Georgia.

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Here:
- If you can wait another two years, you might not lose as much money on selling your house. Maybe.
- Remember Pigford and Shirley Sherrod? There’s more
- Cyclorama moving to new digs at Atlanta History Center.
- Shiver me timbers, queue up the Jaws soundtrack.
- It’s been a whole year since the last one, but another Georgia bank failed last week.

There:
- In honor of the Georgia run-offs, the Brooklyn Bridge surrendered. Wait, what?
- The new level of trust.
- Ebola doctor now infected.
- Hillary code. Or something.
- Oh, the Schadenfreude.
- A contract killer who drives a Prius?

Random Everywhere:
- Bad form, HBO.
- Classless, period.
- Jar-Jar Binks polls more favorably than Congress. And take note that Darth Vader beats all the 2016 potential presidential candidates like a boss. Really.

OPEN THREAD:

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With Congress still dithering on comprehensive immigration reform and the White House selectively enforcing (or totally ignoring) laws already on the books, states continue to be at the front line of having to deal with the immigration crisis absent any other solution.  This Week Governor Rick Perry authorized 1,000 National Guard members to the boarder.  Other states well inland continue to see or fear an imminent influx of minor children from Central America.

Governor Deal today sent out the following press release, indicating that Georgia and other states should be consulted before the Feds decide to direct minor refugees here, awaiting case adjudication and possible deportation.

Gov. Nathan Deal today sent this letter to ask the Obama administration to define the status of the Central American unaccompanied minors being held by federal authorities before asking private or state organizations to take them in. [click to continue…]

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Editors’ Note On Commenting

July 24, 2014 15:08 pm

by Charlie · 9 comments

Last week we had a first time commenter sign on using an email address name that was a racial epithet.  Today I just received a first comment to approve with the moniker “Trailer Trash”.  I’d suggest those of you that are new to our community put your best foot forward when joining our commenting pool.  While I won’t claim I’m happy with every screen name that has ever been approved, I’m also not inclined nor compelled to turn people loose into our community who have such little regard for themselves or others to use names as these.  I find it hard to think that you believe these terms aid political discourse.  Try harder, or stay away.  - Management

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With so many polls wrong about Tuesday’s GOP runoff, one political scientist may have an explanation.

“I don’t think any of the polls in the primary or runoff were live interviewer calls,” said Alan Abramowitz of Emory University. He told Newsradio 106.7 on Thursday that, “Live interviewer calls, where you can call both landline and cell phone lines, is generally the preferred method of doing these polls, but its more expensive.”

Abramowitz also says its a big challenge to get people to answer their phones when they see a number they don’t recognize.

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