More Than Just Elephants in this Big Tent Party

Those of you who know me, know that I have been saying this for months.  The Lt. Gov race between Casey Cagle and Ralph Reed was more than just Casey Cagle versus Ralph Reed.  Each candidate – to me – defined the two faces of the Republican party – Ralph Reed, the moral conservative and Casey Cagle, the business/fiscal conservative.

The AJC – always five steps behind the Republican Party (wearing a burkha) had this to offer over the weekend:

Last week, on the web site of National Review, the conservative magazine, Cagle’s pollster, John McLaughlin, called the victory “the beginning of the Republican reformation


  1. LINDA says:

    Big Tent Party? No.

    Three Ring Circus? Yes

    Did up some copies of “Brain Salad Surger” by Emerson, Lake and Palmer, and chill out with the show that never ends.

  2. LINDA says:

    My laptop keys are getting wore out. Gotta throw it out, I guess. The album is Brain Salad Surgery. I need to hit the keys harder. But not to worry the most outspoken blogger will not give up.

  3. Broty says:

    I’m not sure how you can say this race was the moral conservatives vs. the business/fiscal conservatives and then say Reed had more to offer than just his CC credentials and Cagle was just as socially conservative. Reed had the backing of some in the business community while Cagle had the support of many social/Christian conservatives.

    I don’t think you can read a whole lot into this race other than Reed was an unacceptable candidate and Cagle proved to be an exceptional candidate to a majority of Republican primary voters. Trying to make it anything more than that is a mistake.

    BahamaBoy has it right – take Abramoff out of the equation and this would have been a very different race.

    Oh, and I think we’re already a Big Tent Party.


    This race identified a changing of the gaurd in the GA GOP, simply stated out with the old … in with new.. ideas, names, etc. We in order to maintain power and sustain it for years as the Dems did must think in and out of the box. We all witnessed a classic case of the majority not buying damaged goods just because a minority followed blindly. We must present the canidates and ideas to stay on top without leaving our core beliefs. Tueaday July 18, was a good day for our party and now we must unite to to make our great party grow.

  5. GOPeach says:

    This race revealed the power of negative canpaigning.

    Casey Cagle has set the pace for future candidates to
    hammer out nagative rhetoric for 6 months and before long,
    people will actually start to belief it. Any little “David” can
    come along with negatove campaigning and take down
    any “Giant”. This is a very bad message.

    I personally watched the epidemic spread on PP like a
    virus of the soul.

    Casey Cagle has proven to us that we are all guilty until
    proven innocent and that we are all guilty be association.
    This is quite scary folks. Seems ” Big Brother is in the bed
    with the liberal Media” and they are making lots of babies.

    “Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it

  6. Cobb County says:

    Please let it be known that there are some rational Reed supporters out here. Being part of that group (I hope), it upsets me when people compare Cagle, or his campaign to Hitler. Listen, campaign politics is not for the faint of heart. If a candidate truly wants to win they must do what it takes, even if it is negative. You cannot blame the Cagle Team for using what they had. Everyone knew what the focus of the campaign would be, including Ralph. I am as disapointed as anyone that Ralph lost, but to make the comparisons that GOPeach made are not only lacking class, but also validity.

  7. Demonbeck says:

    GOPeach lost her validity on these boards a long time ago Cobb County. Her class was up in the air until just recently.

  8. GOPeach says:

    Relax Cobb County!!!

    Don’t over react here. This is not personal.
    I am exposing a theory, not harmomng a person.

    This is not about Cagle ( as a person).I think he was completly “USED” .

    I actually think he was coached on what to do and say by people
    who had the whole negative campaigning thing down.

    He seems like a nice man and I will support him in the general.

    ( If he uses the same people in the general, they will use the same
    canpaign style with Hecht). They will find ONE issue and hammer
    it until our brains are branded with it. This is the way it works.

    I am only revealing the DANGER of nagative campaigning. People
    by nature love to think superior to others. That is why negative
    campaigning works. It makes people feel better about themselves
    and less of the candidate, so they become the judge! It goves them
    a sense of power.

    If Ralph had taken ONE ISSUE and pounded Casey, I would say the
    same. It’s the method I am addressing, not the man.

    This was a ruthless tactic and it worked.
    I am warning those I know to be ware of this trend.
    We are seeing it more and more where “Hitler – style
    campaign conultants” hjack the campaigns of nice

    I hope more people start flushing the toilet; instead of
    playing in it.

  9. GOPeach says:


    You guys are funny.

    Demon, after the Jesus video you played.
    I don’t think you aould be a “Class Advocate”.

  10. GOPeach says:


    I am a psychologist. I know a lot about the way the
    brain opperates and why people behave the way they do.

    It is facinating to me to be on PP and see the way people
    think poliically and analyze it. I am learning a lot actually.

    I would like to encourage you to step back some time and
    take a look at the way the Liberal Media and the Politics
    join forces to mobilize a movement. Then watch how that
    effects the actions of people.

    This “Hilter- style” can be used to to further good or evil.
    Obviously Hitler used it for evil. Where are George Bush used
    it for good ( The Swift Boat Campaign worked great- It completley
    discredited John Kerry’s claim to be a war hero).

    Throughout History – we see the pen is more powerful than
    the sword. Today the media is “the pen”. It is more powerful
    than our government. That concerns me.

    Just think if there had been no “Abramoff” stories in the media
    prior to Ralph Reed running. Cagle’s people would have left
    it alone because people would not connect. Since that was already
    a “Big Story”… they rode the wave until it mushed out in a
    a victory.

    Don’t get me wrong. I think Casey will be a good Lt. Gov. After
    all, he has 12 years experience in the Senate. That is nothing to
    sneeze at. He is a republican and that works for me.

    I just want to warn everyone in the future to watch the negative
    campaiging ploys. Stand back and look at it hard and long. Ask

    1. Why is this being said?
    2. Who is saying it?
    3. Whom will it benefit?
    4. Where is this going?
    5. How will this effect the future? etc…..

  11. Michael C says:

    It all comes down to choices. Ralph Reed repeatedly chose to skirt morality in the name of the Christian Right. Not once but many times the Christian Right was used.

    It is wrong to seperate the GOP into 2 seperate distinct groups; the social or the fiscal. I am both and I supported Cagle because I was tired of being used by politicians like Ralph who say one thing and act another.

    This election was about conservatives fed up with career politicians like Ralph. And they spoke up.

  12. GOPeach says:

    ooops – I am soory guys!

    I posted the one ( above) too fast.

    I found a way to check my spelling now!

    ( When the teacher said ” Spell” I though she said
    ‘Hell” so I ran to the Math Class instead. lol

    I am a psychologist. I know a lot about the way the
    brain operates and why people behave the way they do.
    It is fascinating to me to be on PP and see the way people
    think politically and analyze it. I am learning a lot actually.
    I would like to encourage you to step back some time and
    take a look at the way the Liberal Media and the Politics
    join forces to mobilize a movement. Then watch how that
    effects the actions of people.
    This “Hilter- style

  13. Demonbeck says:


    That may have been the best post you ever made. Kudos. You should have led with it.

  14. GrandOleDawg says:

    This conclusion looks logical from someone on the outside looking in, but I don’t think it holds up. First of all, both candidates were equally conservative. We never heard a lot of policy from Casey, but when we did, I couldn’t say I disagreed a whole lot. (Besides things like his unwillingness to abolish the supplemental budget, which is a ‘nuts and bolts’ type thing not representative of ones ideology). Both ran on very typically Republican platforms, and the entire race came down to leadership and integrity issues (real or perceived). Ralph did not run as the “Christian Right” candidate. You didn’t hear anything out of him that you won’t hear repeatedly in the GOP Presidential Primaries in 2008. ::: “I am a mainstream, taxcutting, pro-family, pro-business conservative” ::: And Casey did not run as some sort of metropolitan Rockefeller Republican. This race was not about the issues. If so, I honestly believe there would have been different outcome. No one running for office in that state of Georgia has ever put forth more ideas and articulated them so well as did Ralph Reed.

    Truth is Demonbeck, you can’t separate Abramoff from this race. It is unfortunate for Ralph, but Jack Abramoff was THE ISSUE of this race. Even if there were significant ideological differences between the two men, you simply could not isolate the “Abramoff factor” out to get a sense of if this was some sort of “movement”.

  15. debbie0040 says:

    I agree with Bahama Boy about Abramoff.

    I reserve judgement until November 8th to see how the GOP does. This whole nasty Lt. Governor’s race could cause voters to stay home and not vote and that could affect the GOP ticket. We are in a position to win it all or lose it all..

    I honestly think the party is divided on the Lt. Governor issue. When you run such a negative and divisive campaign as Cagle did, it is not that easy to put back the pieces together and it is ridiculous to think it will be. Cagle has his work cut out for him . He has my prayers. I think the negative campaign will come back to haunt Cagle. When the Democrat starts going negative against Cagle, Cagle can not cry foul. What goes around usually comes around…

    I support Cagle but I think continuing to re-hash this whole race does no good. Everyone needs to move on.

    I don’t think GOPeach has lost any credibility. She is stating her opinion. Isn’t that what blogs are for?

  16. GOPeach says:

    Michael –

    I agree!

    This confirms another Hitler quote:

    “It is always more difficult to fight against faith than against knowledge.

  17. Demonbeck says:


    You do realize that RR is no longer the Chairman of the GA GOP or the Christian Coalition?

  18. John Galt says:

    One point to be learned from this race is that “The Party” did not and does not pick winners – voters do. The party insiders who supported Reed got beat, and that’s a good thing. Republican voters simply said they want honest candidates and officeholders. All Republican voters should be proud of that. We don’t mindlessly support the Ted Kennedys of the world.

  19. GOPeach says:


    Of course I do.

    Once someone is in leadership like this, they will
    always have this on their resume.

  20. GOPeach says:


    That is a good point.
    I see the theory.

    Although, I am quite concerned that sadly a message was
    sent that we are all guilty until proven innocent and we are
    all guilty by association.

    The people voted and the people believe this. This
    is desturbing. Think of how the juries in the the future
    will arrive at a verdict.

  21. GOPeach says:

    Grand Ole Dawg-

    You nailed it!

    This race was about The People vs. Jack Abramoff.
    It was not about Reed vs. Cagle.

  22. Broty says:


    I think you’re reching conclusions that are a bit of a stretch – the Lt. Gov’s election will not affect how juries will decide verdicts in the future. No “guilty until proven innocent” message was sent.

    No one convicted Ralph Reed for “crimes” in this election – voters simply looked at the two campaign’s arguments and made a decision based on what who they felt made the best case. Cagle came out on top.

    That’s it.

  23. GOPeach says:

    Debbie is right.
    We need to move on and heal.

    However, it is good to process such things and
    actually discuss the theory without the drama
    of a primary. Geeeeeeeeeeze.

    I am actually seeing the blood dry up and
    scabs developing. I think Debbie wants to
    be sure we do not rip off the scabs and
    start bleeding again. I agree.

    We will most likely be scared by this. That is
    not a bad thing. It will serve to remind us to think
    beyond election day.

  24. Big Mack says:

    Ralph was beaten. We Republicans have a candidate named Casey Cagle. Let’s forget about the primary and get behind Casey and win the Lt. Governorship.

  25. buzzbrockway says:

    Cagle ran the race he had to. With Reed’s name recognition you could say that Cagle was practically running a race to unseat an incumbent. In order to do that he had to convince people that Reed had to be opposed and in effect “fired.” Cagle’s campaign did that quite effectively.

    I don’t know that a Cagle victory signals a move to the center since Cagle is pretty conservative himself. Perhaps it signals a bit more sophistication by religious conservative voters. I don’t mean that as an insult – what I mean is that I don’t think religious conservatives vote as a bloc as much as they once did. A phone call from Sadie Fields, or an endorsement by Georgia Right to Life still carries some weight, but it may not be the determining factor in as many people’s mind as it used to.

  26. GOPeach says:

    Wow BUZZ

    I just got out of a meeting with a State House candidate in Cobb whom
    I am supporting. She just basically said the same thing you just posted

    She actually said, ” Our faith is more than a coalition and a right .It
    is who we are, like liquid silver. that can not be bottled and labeled.”

    hummmmmmm Very interesting. I am learning.

  27. Jimbo says:

    Cagle ran a negative campaign that went too far. He lied and twisted the truth about Reed. There was many crossover voters that voted against Reed that will not vote for Cagle in November.

    There is no way in hell I would vote for Cagle. It would be validating the type of campaign he ran and rewarding him for it. We can stand and send a message that we will not stand for this type of campaigning. I would rather have a Democrat as Lt. Governor. He would have not real power anyway.

  28. debbie0040 says:

    GOPeach, there are scars that will never heal. If Reed were to announce his intention to run for political office again, I would be one of the first to volunteer.

    I just don’t think it serves a purpose to debate the race any further. It is over, Republicans and Democrats have spoken.

    I think there are other races to concentrate on now. I am through spending my time working on the Lt. Governor’s race and am moving on to others.

    We need to all get behind Perdue now. Maintaining the Governor’s office is the number one priority.

    I do think there was a lot of crossover voting. Polls can be wrong but I don’t think these were. The pollsters were polling GOP voters not Democrats planning to cross over.

    I think Cagle has damaged his chances of being elected Lt. Governor by running such a negative campaign. Cagle himself is not squeaky clean and the Democrats are probably salivating and waiting to go negative against Cagle.

    As far as I am concerned the war is not over, we just have a cease fire in place…

  29. Bull Moose says:

    Okay, for God’s sake Debbie, Ralph Reed ran won of the most negative campaigns in Georgia’s history. From day one, he went negative. First mail piece, negative. First TV commercial, negative. Then he went and ran false attacks on Casey Cagle. That’s just sad.

    There was not much crossover vote because Democrats had a loaded primary of their own.

    The bottom line is that people with common sense weren’t going to trust Ralph Reed, with his ethical and potential legal issues, in an elected office of trust.

    Reed had a long career of essentially using people of faith to further his own individual goals and personal bank account.

    Casey Cagle’s election was supported by local elected leaders, bankers, REALTORS, builders, community leaders, college students, seniors, you name it.

    I think this election represented the maturing of the Georgia Republican party.


    Jimbo you are dumba**, and GOPEACH just because your a doctor and your husband is a judge , gives you no more insight on what our party wants in it’s leaders than a wino, if all you are going to do is keep up this pompous bullshit. MOVE ON!!!

  31. debbie0040 says:

    Bullmoose, if you reall y believe that then Cagle has nothing to worry about does he? He won’t have problems raising money. He won’t have to rely on the State Senators to raise money for him. Cagle has the election in the bag according to you.

  32. nfire says:

    Ahh the hypocrisy of the Reed myrmidons who whine that someone ran a nasty campaign against him. BOO FREAKIN HOO!!! How many NASTY campaigns has Ralphie been involved with? Ralph’s the one who got a taste of his own medicine.

  33. GOPeach says:

    Oh my SouthCom-

    You do wake up grouchy. Don’t you.
    You posted at 7:45 AM!!!

    Wow –
    I suggest a nice coffee and maybe
    an hearty omlette before you start
    your typing!

    Maybe some anger management therapy.:)


    GOPEACH, by 7:00 I’ve ran 2 miles ,had breakast studied my itenerary for the day and checked emails, however thank you for the gesture. All I’m trying to get across is CASEY won now let’s get behind our guy and Sonny and win this thing in November. Look Ralph has probably moved on and has another target, mark, hustle etc.. in the works. You all need not fret for OL RALPHIE he’s one of the best conmen in the business. You think he’s worried about you, Debbie, JIMBO et al…. NOT!

  35. MorganCoGOP says:

    “I think Cagle has damaged his chances of being elected Lt. Governor by running such a negative campaign. Cagle himself is not squeaky clean and the Democrats are probably salivating and waiting to go negative against Cagle.” – debbie0040

    1) Casey did not run a negative campaign. All of Casey’s ads were truthful, not false and misleading like Ralph’s. I have no doubt he will be able to run on his record in November.

    2) What in God’s name are the Dems waiting to attack Casey on? Cagle’s image might not be spotless, but its damn sure pretty close. Ralph had to make up lies about Casey that the voters saw straight through, so I don’t know what the Dems are going to just wait to go negative with.

  36. debbie0040 says:

    Cagle’s ads were false and misleading. Reed did not support forced abortions and child prostitution. That kind of campaigning went over the top and makes it extremely difficult for Reed supporters to support him. There will be a good number that will not. A lot of the people that supported Cagle will support the Democrat in November not Cagle. In order to win, Cagle needs the GOP base united and they will not be on the Lt. Governor’s race.

    The Dems can attack Cagle on the same issues Reed did. Reed’s attacks did not stick because of Abramoff.

    I am sure one thing they will bring up is the fact Cagle gained so much wealth while in office. It might not have been illegal but they will bring it up and it is bothersome.

  37. Romegaguy says:

    Reed’s attacks didnt stick because 1) he is morally bankrupt and 2) they were complete lies.


    Debbie, you are a LOSER… you sit out the general and become less than you are now which is somewhere south of whale feces. You should join a cult, you are such a blind follower.I hope to GOD you have a small circle of influence (which based on your charateristics I’m sure do) and please bendover for OL RALPHIE everyday so you can get your needed fix…HAHAHA LOSER BABY NOTHING BUT A LOSER..

  39. FarmBoy says:

    Casey Cagle won by using the liberal media approach and falsly attacking a fellow conservative. Cagle will be shocked when he sees the liberal media turn on him now. No one likes a Republican that personally attacks other Republicans.

  40. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Are you arguing that those were not the conditions on the islands, or that Reed did not know that they were when he was lobbying against US regulation of workplace conditions?

  41. debbie0040 says:

    Southern Comfort, I have said I was voting for Cagle. Please show me where I said I was sitting out the general. You need to learn to read and try anger management. Casey Cagle must be sooo proud to have you on his team…

  42. FarmBoy says:

    I have not seen any proof that those conditions were occuring on the island at a rate greater than they occur any where else in the world. The fact is, Reed’s work was not related to that issue. Reed simply praised a fellow Republican for working against Clinton and other democrats and for supporting conservative market conditions. If you put this label on Reed, you must believe that the entire Republican party that sided with Ralph support child prostitution and abortion. For example, just because I don’t support excessive welfare handouts doesn’t mean that I support poverty. As most Republicans believe, and as they did in this case, free markets can serve better than Government intervention.

  43. Jeff Emanuel says:

    “I have not seen any proof that those conditions were occuring on the island at a rate greater than they occur any where else in the world.”

    I’ve been to Guam. Have you?

    By the way, Ahmadinejad of Iran has “not seen any proof that” the Holocaust actually occurred, either. Doesn’t mean he — or you — is right. Your better bet would have been to dispute Reed’s knowledge of the circumstances, rather than to dispute the circumstances themselves.

  44. debbie0040 says:

    Ronald Reagan was against the U.S. Regulation of the workplace on the island as well. Did he support child prostitution and forced abortions?

    Face it, Cagle went over the top on that one.

  45. debbie0040 says:

    The bottom line is if you blast Reed for his postion then you have to blast Reagan and other elected Republicans that were against the Clinton proposal. You can’t just say well Reed had this position so he was in favor of forced abortions and child prostitution but other Repbublicans that held the exact same position were not. If one was then they all were. When Cagle attacked Reed, he attacked all others as well.

  46. Broty says:

    Let’s say Cagle went overboard on that one. The question I have is why was Reed’s campaign so slow to react? And when they did, it seemed kind of anemic.

  47. FarmBoy says:

    I don’t know what Reed says about what he knew. I will go so far as to say that even knowing what Cagle is saying, regulation is not, and was not, the answer to the problem.

    According to Cagle, Reagan supported child prostitution. I am proud of our Lt. Governor candidate.

  48. FarmBoy says:

    Good question Broty. I guess they assumed the stupidity of Cagle’s charges would speak for themselves.

  49. Broty says:

    I would hope that a seasoned political veteran like Reed would never assume anything in a campaign.

    Debbie’s line about Reagan supporting the same position would have been pretty effective in calming the story and would have provided a historic context. Too bad it came a week after the election.


    Debbie, no anger mgmt needed here just tired of your bellyaching . You guys just can’t see the forest for the trees. Let’s quit talking about the loser of the race and why or how he lost and focus on winning in November.Casey is and always was the best man for the slot.

  51. debbie0040 says:

    I am focused in on November but in other races , not the Lt. Governor. I am devoting my volunteer time to other races that are more important to me.
    You can’t see the forest for the trees. Republicans will not be united for the Lt. Governor’s race because of the negative campaigning and Cagle has an uphill battle ahead. I do wish him luck.

  52. Bill Simon says:

    Ronald Reagan was against this legislation in 1999???

    Debbie, perhaps you are not aware that the rest of us have a cognizant connection to the real world. In 1999, Ronald Reagan was well into the throes of Alzheimer’s…so, it is VERY doubtful that he himself offered an opinion on the Clinton-proposed legislation.

  53. MorganCoGOP says:

    “Republicans will not be united for the Lt. Governor’s race because of the negative campaigning and Cagle has an uphill battle ahead. I do wish him luck.” – debbie0040

    What have you been smoking? The Republican ticket is strong for November. Cagle is sitting good right now raising money while the two Dems fight each other. He does not have an uphill battle. I believe that both he and Sonny, along with the rest of the GOP ticket will be chosen by the voters in November.

  54. debbie0040 says:

    Reagan had the same postion regarding the Marianna’s when he was President and was against U.S. Labor laws being applied to the Islands. You are reading things that are not there, I never mentioned Reagan and 1999.

    I think the GOP ticket is strong but think Cagle has his worked cut out for him. There are many that are talking of not voting for LT Governor. I disagree with that sentiment, however it is there. Republicans are divided on that race.

    I am realistic enough to believe that it is not going to be as easy for the entire ticket as you think…. I think the GOP will take most of the statewide offices but it will not be a cake walk.


    debbie, we recognize we have a battle ahead and we will do fine.You are something, now the lt. guv is’nt important… sorry you are wrong again. Sonny will do alot better now Casey is on the ticket and the Senate will run like a well oiled machine. As far as negative BS I told you this was a full contact sport and after all Ralphie is king of negative…and the true republicans will come through for CC !!!

  56. debbie0040 says:

    I said there are other races more important to me. Importance is a matter of perspective.

    There is only so much volunteer time and you have to prioritize.

    For me that would be Governor, local legislative races to unseat Democratic incumbents, SOS, Agriculture Commissioner, Attorney General. For you that might be Governor, Lt. Governor. Everyone’s priorities are not the same.

    Give me abreak, the Lt. Governor is a token position. Most of the power was taken away and rightly so. It should not be given back because there could be another Democrat Lt. Governor.


    “what goes around comes around” I guess nobody knows than better than you and Ralphie…you kill me

  58. debbie0040 says:

    No.Being Lt. Governor is like being Vice President. No real power, just a stepping stone.

Comments are closed.