Whitehead is All In

He’ll be announcing for Congress at 10 a.m., being more respectful of the situation than Ralph Hudgens.

It’s going to be interesting to see this shape up as a GOP Bloodbath.

Once a candidate qualifies for another office, the Georgia Constitution requires he step down from his current office.

So, if Fleming jumps in too (and let’s not even get into Max Burns jumping in, which might now just happen since he’s decided not to run for the State GOP chairman’s position), we’ll have three open seats in the legislature.

Right now, Whitehead is the odds on favorite.


  1. I’m not so sure Whitehead is the favorite. Obviously Hudgens has the personal money to make him a contender in this race regardless of what we think of him.

    Whitehead is not exactly a spring chicken. Republicans should seriously consider that it could be 10 years or more before they regain control of Congress. At that point, and even if it doesn’t happen, they’ll need someone that can build seniority. As far as Columbia County is concerned, Fleming is young enough to be in for the long haul. Is Whitehead?

  2. jackson says:

    Chris, he is the favorite because he was a well-regarded county commissioner (which is tough to be anywhere, especially here in Columbia County) and crushed an incumbent state senator when he decided to run for state senate. Folks love the guy. He has personal money too, but frankly, money isnt going to be a problem for most folks. And money is not what is going to win this race.

    Just an FYI.

  3. serving egos says:

    All these Republicans will run, beat the brakes off each other, and a Democrat will sneak in through the back door.

  4. blazer says:

    hahaha, democrats do love the back door dont they????

    or is that gays???

    oh wait they’ re one in the same 🙂

  5. atlantaman says:

    “All these Republicans will run, beat the brakes off each other, and a Democrat will sneak in through the back door.”

    I’m assuming the winner has to get over 50% of the vote, otherwise there is runoff.

  6. Jackson, with all due respect beating Joey Brush in a Republican primary after all those unflattering rumors emerged is not some sort of Herculean effort.

    Besides, Columbia County is only about 18% of that district. Even when you look at where the Republican primary voters in the district tend to live, only 20% are Columbians. There is a whole world outside of Columbia County and even Whitehead’s Senate district, although I do agree it is a good base to start from.

  7. Bill Simon says:

    Jim Whitehead has a brain and he is able to use it. Can’t say the same for Mr. Hudgens.

    But, I DO hope Hudgens resigns his senate seat to run…that’ll be a great way to have him out of the State Senate and replace him with someone with a brain.

  8. jackson says:

    Granted, it was Joey Brush. But it still is tough to beat a Republican incumbent, regardless of who they are, unless there is something published or found out about them. That wasnt the case.

    I wasnt saying that Columbia County was a huge part of the district. You just made the statement you didnt think Whitehead was the favorite, based on money of Hudgens. I was just saying Jim probably has as much as him, but it really well loved by many folks there. For a politician to be held in such high regard, its a tough thing, no matter who you are.

  9. Bill Simon says:

    Uh, Jackson? Not to take away from Whitehead’s victory over Brush, but Brush sunk himself due to 2 events: 1) Trying to pass himself off as Holier-than-thou when he was pulled over by a state patrol officer, and 2) his “sparkler” legislation.

  10. IndyInjun says:

    Jim Whitehead will get the lion’s share of the Columbia and Richmond County vote, Fleming or Young notwithstanding.

    Fleming should remember that patience is a virtue, especially given the state of things. IMHO, for him to run against Whitehead is a gargantuan folly. He has carefully prepared for all of these years and is eager to leap at this chance, but doing so may severely curtail his future in politics.

    Maybe his cautious, calculating side will hold sway and he will decide to stay put as Whip.

    Whitehead has a very loyal following and very wide support. He has a truckload of COMMON SENSE.

    Jim will make a fine Congressman and I intend to support him to the hilt.

  11. rightofcenter says:

    Bill Simon,
    I often don’t agree with ya, but you are spot on here. Hudgens is a dullard. Whitehead will paste him.

  12. atlantaman says:

    I don’t know a whole lot about the district, but could this be a possible scenario.

    Whitehead and Flemming split the north end of the district – Hudgens wins the south end of the district and then ends up beating the tolken Democrat in a runoff?

    I remember someone speculated earlier that Whitehead would not get into the race if Flemming was in, I wonder if it was for the previous reason.

  13. Jason Pye says:

    A friend of mine put it to me like this, “If Norwood had a choice, Whitehead would have been it.”

    I think you’ll see a lot of Norwood’s people supporting him.

  14. TigerLily says:


    Whitehead is 65 years old…the same age as Charlie when he passed. I don’t think that being in your 60s should count you out of running for Congress.

    Jim is extremely well liked in his district. It is a loss for the state Senate but if he wins the congressional race, DC will have “one of the good guys” filling Charlie’s seat.

  15. waterboy says:

    Bill –
    Lobbyists at the Capitol report Brian Kemp was working the halls scouting out Hudgens senate seat two weeks ago. They also said he checked with a couple of State Reps in the district to see if they were running and if they would support him.

    Lots of folks are complaining about Hudgens making comments about running for the 10th CD before Congressman Norwood passed away, but Kemp did the same thing in seeking Hudgens’ Senate seat.

  16. I Am Jacks Post says:


    We can always count on you to use this board to take unprovoked swings at Kemp. You’re not very bright, but at least you’re predictable.

  17. Brian from Ellijay says:

    Damn, Hudgens doesn’t look to have to many friends, where are all those favors from Reed and Co. for all the help he gave him?

  18. Jeff Emanuel says:

    One of the less savory Reed supporters, I’ve recently learned, is now working for a Whitehead win – which gives me a little pause in supporting him as a candidate.

  19. IndyInjun says:


    Whitehead was front and center in campaigning for Casey Cagle.

    If we are going to let support and opposition to Reed be a criteria, Whitehead has the firm support of one of Reed’s most militant and vocal detractors – ME.

  20. waterboy says:

    jacks Post –
    No unprovoked jab at Brian Kemp. Just comments to add to the discussion. Some like to talk about Hudgens’ plans, why not consider Kemp’s? Maybe there are others that are looking to run in Hudgens’ Senate seat as well. There must to something to it since http://www.votebriankemp.com is up and running!

    Why not discuss the issue instead of showcasing your lack of class by commenting on my brilliance – or lack there of? Try offering something constructive to the conversation…or just shut up.

  21. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Indy, I am fully aware that Whitehead was a Cagle guy. Furthermore, I am also aware that Ralph Hudgens threw whatever weight he could muster behind Reed.

    My problem has nothing to do with “punishing” folks for who they supported in a primary election, nor am I letting “support and opposition to Reed be a criteria.”

    However, I think that a lot can be told about somebody by looking closely at who follows them, and at who they allow themselves to be surrounded with. Reed was a great example — many, many people were turned off to him more by the unsavory, blindly ambitious, just plain bad people who rallied to him, worked/volunteered for him, and who were some of his most vocal supporters, than were turned off by his personality or the scandal surrounding him.

    It’s troubling to me that so many of these folks have flocked (following, again, RR) to Mitt Romney for ’08, and it is likewise troubling to me that some are rallying around Mr. Whitehead (and in the process, like their mentor who abandoned Rudy Giuliani — who campaigned hard for him in the primary — are also throwing another staunch Reed supporter — Ralph Hudgens — under the bus).

    In my opinion, they’re being led to Whitehead by the same political opportunism (can also be read “smelling a winner”) which led so many of them to follow Reed (when it seemed like he was the goliath who would stomp any in his way, and when it seemed so expedient to be at his side when he won). I don’t think that this in itself reflects on Mr. Whitehead; however, who he choses to employ, and to continue to surround himself with, will.

    I haven’t decided whom I support yet, personally (not that I think my own support is any more earth-shaking an endorsement than the next guy’s); however, especially as a resident of the 10th district, I will take care to look at a number of factors regarding each candidate — including what type of person he or she chooses to surround him or herself with.

    Is that a bit clearer?

  22. IndyInjun says:

    Yes, Jeff that is fair enough. In fact we just finished a very hotly contested Superior Court race in which Jim Whitehead was against my candidate, a good and highly qualified man who was smeared by association with a few shady contributors.

    It is strange to see this tactic working in reverse in this race.

    In either case, I do not believe in guilt by association, although it does seem to be a popular technique.

    I do not pretend to be intimately familiar with all of the machinations in Atlanta and base my support for Jim upon all the years that I have known him and butted heads with him.

    As I have told him, he really needs to lose the GOP label and become an independent. If he follows the same path as the rest of the Georgia GOP delegation instead of remaining true to conservative principles, as Norwood did, I won’t continue to support him.

    You and he can COUNT on that.

  23. Bill Simon says:


    It’s not the “GOP” label that is the problem. It is the folks in Congress who do not hold to the GOP standard in their actions.

    I think a few more cycles will rout-out enough of the bad example GOPers so that we can revamp our image back to what it was under Reagan.

  24. Jeff Emanuel says:

    a good and highly qualified man who was smeared by association with a few shady contributors.

    It is strange to see this tactic working in reverse in this race.

    Lest you be confused, I am not in any way trying to “smear” Mr. Whitehead. The only dog I have in this fight is wanting the best conservative representation for my district.

    As I said above, I think that most of the unsavory types who have gravitated toward him are trying, for their own personal gain, to be visibly at the side of a winner from the beginning of the race. Were it to look like Hudgens, or Doc Eldridge, or any other candidate were in the driver’s seat, I have zero doubt that these people would fly to that candidate’s side faster than you could blink, and then be vocal about how they had “always supported that candidate.”

    Still, a lot can be said about a person, or a candidate, by who he surrounds himself with. For that reason, this situation bears watching.

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