Kemp as Interim SOS?

Getting rumors that the Governor will not be denied his coronation of a Secretary of State, and that he’s now going with Brian Kemp.

If true, he has totally missed the point. And Kemp, if he accepts, has as well.

Neither Kemp nor MacGinnitie need to be appointed nor annointed. Find a qualified interim and let the voters decide who belongs in this office.

UPDATE: The AJC is now reporting the same here, with this as the money quote:

A source close to the situation Monday said Perdue was moving toward naming Kemp in part, the source said, to give him a leg up in the 2010 election.

Why does the Governor feel compelled to give someone “a leg up” on an election? Why didn’t the Governor endorse Kemp a year ago if he feels so compelled? And why wasn’t Kemp his first choice when the opportunity to appoint him came up originally?


  1. BuckheadConservative says:

    Sonny is completely out of control. You’re exactly right, he missed the point entirely. The point was to let the primary process work. Now he’s gone and trashed the process. Again.

  2. Fawkes says:

    We’ll soon see the character of Brian Kemp. Will he choose principle over politics? Or will he end up being one of “Sonny’s Boys”. Thank God we get a new governor in 2010.

    • Junius says:

      We’ve come a very long way from the heady times of Sonny’s “New Georgia” haven’t we. Not a lot new or surprising about this hack political move.

    • HowardRoark says:

      Rep. Bob Smith once told me there are two types of people in the world. Those who sign the front of the check, and those that sign the back. Brian Kemp is one who signs the back of the check. “Please, just give it to me”

      • Lawton Sack says:


        Update 2:02 p.m. It’s official. Perdue just released a statement naming Kemp secretary of state.

        In the release, Perdue said Kemp will serve out the remainder of the current term and continue to campaign for a full stint in the job.

        “I have known Brian for several years, and he has shown a strong dedication and commitment to public service,” said Governor Perdue. “His leadership abilities and integrity will be a great asset to Georgia and the Secretary of State’s office.”

        In a statement included in Perdue’s news release, Kemp thanks the governor.

        “I greatly appreciate the Governor’s confidence and am honored to serve the people of Georgia in this vital office,” Kemp said. “I will continue the honorable tradition of leadership demonstrated by Karen Handel, Cathy Cox, Lewis Massey, and others before them. I am eager to get started and deliver for the people of Georgia.”

        • Tricia says:

          He couldn’t possibly turn it down – it would look ridiculous considering he’s been running for the office for a year.

          What’s wrong, wrong, wrong, is Sonny handpicking between the two who will now have (I) behind his name.

          Wrong, wrong, wrong.

          And I don’t have a pony in the race yet – would be saying the same thing if it was MacGinnatie that was appointed.

  3. AthensRepublican says:

    I have been a Brian Kemp supporter for quite some time. That said, I agree with Icarus’ statement. Let the voters of Georgia decide this race. We don’t need the Governor making decisions that the voters should make.

    • Ken in Eastman says:

      I agree. I also like Brian Kemp, but having said that – it’s still wrong.

      I don’t know what Sonny’s thinking but Jim Cole was never the problem. Appointing someone seeking the position was the problem. *sigh* It seems so obvious why this is wrong, why don’t they see it at the Governor’s mansion.

      Like I said, I like Brian Kemp but this is still just flat out wrong.

  4. Georgia Judge says:

    I think this was a good choice and as stated earlier sometimes its just best to see how things play out.This was a good opportunity for the Governor to take a long veiw with this appointment and I think it was the proper thought process.Congrats to Brian I know he will do a good job.

    • HowardRoark says:

      Why because he was such a convincing 2 term Senator? Or because he ran such an effective campaign for Ag Commissioner in ’06? Or the way he drained Gary Black of resources in the runoff, costing the GOP a win in the general? Or ran such an effective campaign for SoS that he went from clear front runner to neck and neck with an outsider?

      Bottom line, he couldn’t win on merits so his buddy gave him a leg up. Typical Gold Dome politics. I’m sick of it.

      • AthensRepublican says:

        I disagree. I do think Brian Kemp could have won on merits. That is why I don’t think he needed nor should have accepted the appointment.

        • HowardRoark says:

          I’m fine with that, but what we need now is for folks to stand up to Gov Perdue and these good ole boy politics. To me, Kemp is now become part of the problem with this current situation.

      • Ken in Eastman says:

        Look, I wish he had declined the appointment. Having said that, he is a credible candidate and I wish him no harm.

        I am sick however of Governor Perdue pushing his choices on the party. Gee, Sonny, just let this stuff go and let the GOP voters decide. That’s what we are supposed to do.

      • Holly says:

        Oh, come on, Howard. I was a Gary supporter in 2006 – and I support his bid for Ag Commissioner today. But to say Gary lost that race because Brian “drained his resources” in a run-off is disingenuous at best. Tommy Irvin has been the Ag Commissioner since the sand was formed, and voters (who are generally clueless about down ballot races) just saw “I” and thought he was doing a good enough job.

        Gary will win this time, but it’s a different atmosphere. Irvin didn’t have all those known negatives during the 2006 race.

        I also have been – and will continue to be – a Brian Kemp supporter in this race for SOS. I don’t think he needed Sonny’s help, but I also agree with the commenter above that Brian would have looked ridiculous if he didn’t accept the position. Sonny put him in an impossible situation, and he’d have looked bad having made either choice.

        • HowardRoark says:

          Give it a break, Holly. If think Kemp was just an innocent beneficiary in this, you are delusional. I know, it sucks when you realize the candidate you support isn’t who you thought he was.

          • Holly says:

            You’ve obviously got an axe to grind against Brian, but some of your arguments don’t hold water, as I pointed out above. The best you can do is “you don’t know him?” Too bad for you; you’re wrong yet again.

            “You are delusional.”

            Funny thing I learned in a ninth grade debate class: when you have to resort to name-calling, you’ve got no good arguments. Now, what was that comment you posted about only saying things worthwhile? 🙂

          • HowardRoark says:

            I have an axe to grind against the current system we have in place in the GOP and how it fights to keep good people out. And yes, I have an axe to grind against the beneficiaries of that system.

          • Holly says:

            Then your fight should be with Perdue. I don’t agree with the way it was done, either. However, I’m not going to assume one candidate wouldn’t have done something the other did had the situation not been reversed. It’s impossible to know.

            And there’s little room for argument that Brian would have set himself up for attacks from any opponent in the primary or the general after 1) accepting and looking like the governor’s anointed candidate or 2) declining and looking like he wasn’t up for the job. So I stand by that Sonny put him in an impossible situation.

          • HowardRoark says:

            Holly, you don’t have to assume a dang thing. You can KNOW this. Brian Kemp begged for the appointment to get a leg up b/c the primary was getting too hot and everyone (but you appearently) knows it. If that’s the sort of leadership you want for our state, and our party…please, go right ahead and vote for Brian Kemp. I’m going to assume your character matches well with his and Perdue’s.

  5. Doug Deal says:

    Consider me a dedicated MacGinnitie supporter from here on out. It was a race I was only vaguely aware of, but now where do I send my donation?

    I do not much admire people who achieve success by having their buddies clear a path for them at the expense of others. How about a fair contest?

    If this is what we can expect from Kemp, I would rather have the Dem’s win in 2010. I am sick of this lousy governor and cannot wait for his long-long overdue retirement.

    • Fawkes says:

      I agree. Wrong is wrong, no matter if it’s a Republican or Democrat committing the act.

      How’s that majority working out for you Georgia GOP?

    • Tricia says:

      “I do not much admire people who achieve success by having their buddies clear a path for them at the expense of others. How about a fair contest?”

      Amen, brother!

      “If this is what we can expect from Kemp”

      This isn’t Kemp, this is Sonny and the GAGOP that have this black mark on them.

    • Ken in Eastman says:

      Tricia is right. The problem is with Governor Perdue.

      Put yourself in Brian Kemp’s shoes. Perdue called and offered Kemp the job. If Kemp declines then Perdue’s next call is to Doug MacGinnitie. Kemp doesn’t know if MacGinnitie will accept or decline. Kemp loses either way. If he accepts the appointment then he likely wins the primary and the election but looks like an opportunist. If he declines the appointment then MacGinnitie probably accepts and likely wins the primary and the election and looks like an opportunist.

      Bottom line: Kemp is either a “good loser” and has wasted the last year or he’s an “opportunist” and a probable winner.

      The problem is that Sonny Perdue should have never placed either Kemp or MacGinnitie in this position.

      • Doug Deal says:

        If you are offered the position decline with:

        “I am in this race to prove myself to the voters of Georgia that I am the right man for the job. To accept this appointment by the Governor would be short circuiting the voters and obtaining an unfair an unearned advantage over my opponent. I refuse to win the race that way, and prefer to earn the position. I encourage the governor to appoint an interim SoS and allow my opponent and me a chance to let the voters decide who serves them as the next secretary of state.”

        Of course this is apparently beyond Kemp’s character.

  6. Joshua Morris says:

    This is a tough position for Kemp to be placed in. Had he turned the job down, many would have chided him for that, saying that he wasn’t willing to take on the job prior to the election.

    Sonny’s best move would have been to find a successful businessman – on the level of a Herman Cain, Arthur Blank, or Rick Smith – to finish the term and hand it over after the election.

  7. Fawkes says:

    MacGinnitie should be the clear choice now. I’m sick of our Governor picking who’s in and who’s out. The “Good ole Boy” network needs to end. How in the world can the GOP rant and rave about “King Roy” when their own Governor is exerting power where he sees fit? Two words: double standard.

    I had nothing against Kemp, but now he’s chosen to go along with Sonny’s plans. Is it good for Kemp? Absolutely! Is it good for Georgia? Absolutely not!

    I’d like a candidate in the Secretary of State’s seat that stands firm on principle, has a good head on his shoulders, and will work for the good of GEORGIA. I’m going with Doug.

  8. IndyInjun says:

    Something spooky happened during my hiatus.

    Now GOP loyalists are admitting that the party is so broken and so dominated by leadership, that the power of the vote and supposedly free elections cannot prevail.

    What you are basically saying is that people you put in power use said power to end the election in January and cement their power.

    To think that y’all used to rail against me for suggesting this before.

    Welcome aboard,…………………………………………….. I think.

    • Ken in Eastman says:


      I agree that this current situation is out of control. I do believe; however, that it is not a permanent problem – at least it had better be temporary.

      Republicans are not easy to lead and we are harder to push. Let’s see what happens next.

  9. Goldwater Conservative says:

    I am not a big fan of Governor Perdue’s. One thing we might ask ourselves is this:

    Are the voters to the most qualified people to make the decision about who their SOS will be?

    I do not intend to take a position on this, but the question remains valid. Afterall, how many people in GA know what the duties of the SOS are? How many can name the current SOS?

    If a person knows neither the duties of the SOS nor the current SOS, are they really making a choice at the ballot box that reflects the level of civic participation and intellect expected by democratic theorists?

    Perhaps Constitutional offices should be handled the way our Founders intended the Senate to be composed. Free of the passions of the masses and by appointment of those less subject to such passions. Afterall, how does Karen Handel or Briam Kemp being pro-life or anti-gay-rights reflect their ability to regulate business, banking and administer elections in the state?

    For those of you that have read anything I have written on this site in the past, you surely know that I despise Karen Handel. That being said, I can say that I am impressed with her offices handling of elections since her taking office. I think she has done a poor job regulating businesses and banks, but the adminstration of elections was just as “good” as it was under Cox. None of this is because she is pro-life or anti-gay.

    In a state such as Georgia, elections to statewide offices (and most lower ballot offices post-2003) are decided in the republican primary and regard who is the most social conservative candidate with money for advertising. That is not what was intended when these offices were created…or maybe it was. Afterall, how many constitutions has Georgia had now? 10. 10!

    I have no doubt the last few were created merely with the intention of securing electoral success for ideological leanings rather than the well-being of our great state.

  10. Groseclose says:

    This criticism of Brian Kemp for accepting the Governor’s appointment is ludicrous. I have seen Brian working tirelessly for this nomination for months. When the Governor recognizes your ability to do the job you want and later win on a permanent basis the job you desire, why would a rationale person turn such an appointment down. The criticism of the Governor is also ill-founded. If the State GOP’s goal is to place conservative individuals in leadership positions, the Governor’s selection makes perfect sense. The Governor made, correctly I believe, the political calculation that Brian was the individual most likely to win the primary. When Brian won, while expending considerable financial resources, he would still face a Democratic opponent (Miss Angela?). The Governor’s decision today makes it more likely that Republicans maintain this position through 2014. The Governor’s and Sen. Kemp’s decisions evinced a great deal of pragmatism—a quality that is often lost on the “principled” readers of peachpundit.

    • Fawkes says:

      Give me a break! This is all Sonny placing who he wants in a seat so that fundraisers are happy. This really isn’t about what’s good for Georgia.

    • Tricia says:

      Or, what this COULD look like is that the good ol’ boys in power thought Kemp was a shoe-in. Then, all of a sudden, it’s a dead heat. Hmmm, what can we do about this? I know, let’s use our power to help “our guy” out. Now he’ll be the incumbant – and the vast majority of the voting population will be none the wiser, most probably not even knowing he hadn’t held office for the last 3 1/2 years (sad, but true).

      Just saying…

  11. Robachiaux says:

    if Macginnitie had been appointed, he would have taken it.

    If anyone running had been appointed, they would have taken it.

    • Joshua Morris says:

      Exactly why I believe the acceptance of this appointment should not change anyone’s allegiance in this race. In my view, it should be a non-factor.

      • HowardRoark says:

        It absolutely should change people’s alligience away from Brian Kemp, political hack. Do you really think Sonny Perdue just gave it to Brian b/c he liked the way he looked in cowboy boots and a suit? joescobb nailed it. If you think Brian was picking his kids up from school and got a completely unexpected call from the governor offering him the job, you’re lying to yourself. I can just hear that hack on the phone now. “Why, gubna….I neva expected you to give me such a wondaful gift. Why me of all people? I wuz just gonna win it fair and squaya, but if you need me, I can do it. I will serve the peoples of Gawga to the best of my abilita.”

        People told Brian Kemp what they thought of his 2 years of Senate experience 4 years ago. Brian Kemp – politcal can’t hack it.

        • Joshua Morris says:

          Excuse me? joescobb nailed what? A fictional account of what he thinks Kemp did?

          You’re not serious, are you? I don’t know whether to laugh or scratch my head.

      • Tricia says:

        “Exactly why I believe the acceptance of this appointment should not change anyone’s allegiance in this race. In my view, it should be a non-factor.”

        Agreed, for the voters that are educated on the issue. The problem is the vast voting population probably has no idea of anything concerning the SoS, so will hit (I) because they “don’t have any complaints” about the job that’s been done. The (I)’s always have an edge going in.

  12. AthensRepublican says:

    The criticism of the Governor is also ill founded?

    As a Kemp supporter, I was highly critical of the Governor for the last several days for announcing the appointment of Jim Cole for Secretary of State. Ignoring the fact that two candidates have been campaigning for this position for the last year. He should have appointed a caretaker for the position and let the GOP primary voters decide. Brian is a good friend, but his being anointed by the Governor does not help him in the July primary. Who knows, maybe the Governor realizes this?

    • bartsimpsonisdaman says:

      Oh hell, the reason da gubuner appointed kemp is cuz everyone knows he likes cows, sheep and maybe even some donkeys. Aint got any brass poles on da farms.

      Did they check his desk for Cheetah tix?

  13. Lawton Sack says:

    Doug worked tirelessly for this also.

    “The Governor made, correctly I believe, the political calculation that Brian was the individual most likely to win the primary. ”

    Last time I checked that the voters still had the right to make this decision, not Perdue. That is why we have a primary, or so I have been told.

    • AthensRepublican says:

      Well said Lawton. Doug has worked for this also and primary voters will evaluate both candidates regardless of what the Governor thinks is best.

    • Groseclose says:

      You are partially correct. The primary electorate still, regardless of the Governor’s decision, has the right to select someone other than Kemp for Secretary of State in July or November 2010. However, the Governor was obligated by law to select a replacement. While the Governor’s decision obviously runs afoul of some reader’s sense of fair play, it is not a fair criticism of Governor to somehow suggest he abrogate his duty by avoiding a tough decision made necessary by Karen Handel’s resignation.

      • AthensRepublican says:

        Groseclose, there was no suggestion that the Governor abrogate his duty. The criticism stems from the Governor wanting to anoint a successor to Handel this close to a primary, when two candidates have been running for the position for over a year now.

        As a Brian Kemp supporter and contributor, I was angered by the Governor’s selection of Jim Cole who then turned around and announced he would run for the position in the primary. I felt this was a slap in the face to those of us who had been working and supporting either Kemp or McGinnitie for the past year.

        The smart and responsible move would have been to appoint someone who would not run for the position but hold it until the voters make the decision. Had the SOS resigned or died in office with much more time in office remaining, an appointed successor would be the responsible thing to do. I am not changing my position from just a few days ago just because my candidate of choice is now the SOS.

      • Lawton Sack says:

        Nobody is saying that he did not have the right to choose a replacement. What is being questioned is why he did not choose an true interim to the position and let the voters decide come primary time between the candidates.

        The Governor just stepped in and chose one of the candidates in the primary race.

        • Groseclose says:

          If our goal is to elect a conservative to this position in 2010, what is the upside to a lame duck secretary of state? The voters are still going to make a decision between Doug and Brian. The date, time, and place of that election has not changed.

          • AthensRepublican says:

            Brian will be labeled as the incumbent. How would you have felt if the Governor named Cole or McGinnitie?

          • Lawton Sack says:

            Because we had two conservatives running for the seat that could have beaten a Democrat for the position. Now we have Perdue & Kemp vs. MacGinnittie.

            Perdue has stepped into a primary. He has now endorsed Kemp with his comments and appointment. Who can put a price on something like that?

            Kemp will now be an incumbent. How much is that worth?

            Doug has been working extremely hard, but now he has all this thrown against him. I hope it makes him stronger, but I wouldn’t blame him if he threw up his hands and says forget the GA Republican Party.

            Or maybe he decides to run against Cagle???

          • Holly says:

            Exactly, Lawton. It wouldn’t have been too hard for someone to step in for a year. I’d heard a rumor sometime yesterday that Cole was going to stay for the year and not seek reelection. That would have been ideal.

            However, as I noted above to Howard, most Georgia voters have no idea what’s going on with down-ballot races. Or most state races. Case in point: my hairdresser, who knows more about Sarah Palin than I’d ever care to, wanted to talk, talk, talk me to death last week about 2012. I asked her what she thought of the governor’s race for 2010, and she didn’t even know who was running. One of my relatives, an otherwise smart man, had no idea that he’s been voting for (or against?) Tom Price for the past six years. He thought he was still in John Linder’s district. Has he been writing John in? Unlikely.

            Voters who know nothing about a race are more likely to check the box of the incumbent. Now Brian’s got an enormous advantage with that letter “I” next to his name.

  14. Ludwig Von Beachbum says:


    The people of Georgia elected Karen Handel to be the SOS and she quit.

    Careful with your criticism of others there sport .

    • B Balz says:

      I am with you Luddy.

      1.) Elected official leaves office early. Cause of problem.
      A.) Throws SOS office in a turmoil. Bad for efficiency. Bad for office and people. That is simply not debatable, turnover is costly. Who knows what business deals may be lost?

      B.) Leaving office early creates situation whereby a new leader is needed, SOS cannot go rudderless. Why no transition planned prior to Ms. Handel’s departure? Even a high school graduate should know better. The heck with that, no education and the cause of this embarassing BS.

      2.) Mssrs. Kemp and McGinnitie (Don’t know either, but they seem like good candidates.) must have both known that the Guv is allowed (may not be advised, but is allowed) to make this call. Call it implied risk of the game.

      3.) Guv makes second personnel misstep by choosing replacement and then said replacement decides – NOGO. First, Mr. Burkhalter, next Mr. Cole. GR8T!

      From ‘everyman’s’ seat, this all seems irrelevant, and has the distinct feel of nobody having a clue as to what is going on. Enter two State GOP reps in a public pishing match on the PP.

      The sound you hear is that pop of a champagne cork in King Roy’s pol op base camp. They are gleeful and are gonna put the business end of a big ol’ whumping stick on us.

      Y’all get your ducks in a row or lose the redstate status that many, really committed fiscal conservatives worked their fannies off getting.

      The GOP in GA is pushing me away from admitting how I vote to my peers, and I am questioning why I would continue to support such an apparent lack of management control.

      Bunch of self important amatuers forgetting whom they represent. HINT: It isn’t the reflection in the mirror.

      Oh yeah, @Doug “How in the plu-perfect poo do you know so much about the durn Cheetah menu specials so well?” Durn near reciting the freakin’ side dishes. Not that their is anything wrong with that, wink-wink, shove-shove.

  15. Georgia Judge says:

    First you make a bunch baseless personal attacks on Cole and now you act as if you really believe Kemp wasnt going to walk away with the nomination in July?PLEASE. I guess the next thing you would have us believe is if Doug would have had the qualifications the Governor felt necessary to recieve the appointment he would have turned it down.I dont think so.
    Lets not kid ourselves Kemp was going to be our next SOS with or without this appointment,and anyone who would say they wouldnt accept this appointment in Kemp’s position is lying to themselves and anyone else who is listening.It is well within the priviliges of a sitting Governor to make such appointments and he made a good one here.

  16. BillonCapitolHill says:

    Since Georgia Judge can see into the future could you tell me who is going to win the Superbowl so I can bet on the winning team and make lots of money.

    Also does this mean his consultant gets the win bonus early?

  17. True Grit says:

    Sonny appoints Cole and it blows up in his face. Cole would have been another contender in an already crowded field. Kemp is qualified. McGinnitie is qualified. Either would have accepted.

    I’m sure my negative will shoot up there again….But Sonny did the right thing by picking the strongest candidate who just happens to also be the most qualified.

    All of you who are giving him a bad time would be really giving Sonny a hard time if he picked a bad candidate who ended up with the nomination and then getting trounced by a Dem come November.

    After Cole went south, Perdue was in the Kobayashi Maru.

  18. True Grit says:

    “I welcome Jim Cole to the primary process and look forward to seeing him on the campaign trail.” – Doug MacGinnitie

    Sounds like to me, MacGinnitie felt that whoever was going to be picked “interim” would be throwing his hat in the primary field. At least now he doesn’t have to worry about a new contender.

      • Joshua Morris says:

        Not really. As strongly as you are railing on this, I sense that you have an underlying itch here.

        Being picked by Perdue is not Brian’s fault, nor that he accepted. If the voters don’t like it, we’ll all know in a few months.

        • Lawton Sack says:

          The only itch I have is protecting the candidates that have worked hard in this election. I stood up for both Kemp and MacGinnitie when Cole was announced and he was quoted as saying he was going to run for re-election.

          I like Brian a lot. We have spoken a few times at the GOP Convention in Savannah and at events here in Statesboro. I thought he was an excellent candidate.

          I like Doug a lot, also. I have seen a tireless work ethic and the willingness to seemingly be all over the state at once at all different kinds of events.

          This was a race that was not diluted in candidates. Both candidates have been gentlemen throughout the process. It looked like it was going to be a race of who could outwork the other. Kemp now seems to have a big advantage.

          I realize that in politics, life, business, etc. that people have different advantages. There are people that are born into wealth and those born into poverty. I have just been a proponent of an equal playing field.

          • Ken in Eastman says:

            Agreed. Let the voters decide without intervention from the Governor’s Mansion.

            I cannot stress how important that (I) will be after Brian’s name. I believe half of the primary voters will not be aware that Kemp was recently appointed to the position.

  19. GOPGrassroots says:

    Looks like Joel finally won a race…and this move is just plain wrong.

    Let the GOP voters decide.

    • I Am Jacks Post says:

      My lands, you all need to turn off the black light and come upstairs and put on some daytime clothes. The air is much better on the first floor. And no, they don’t make a campaign game for the Wii.

      • Mozart says:

        “And no, they don’t make a campaign game for the Wii.”

        Though I suspect that game would make a lot of money for them if they did.

  20. JSBarrington says:

    Won something? Where have you been? Do you really want to compare resumes with that guy? Tom Murphy and Ralph Reed were names that made you pee in your pants. What exactly have you ever done or won?

  21. VOR says:

    Kemp has experience and can run the office, no problem. Doug has youth and excitement and promises to bring something new to the table. Like someone once said, the choices haven’t changed, how Brian uses the office to effect his selection this fall (or not), will make the difference. Doug has to deal with it, but he had to deal with the experience issue anyway. He now can expand his differences between himself and Brian based on what Brian actually does or doesn’t do. Brian has to get it right. I don’t see how it is unfair, but actually gives voters a real window to the future and more separation in the choice that they have. I guess, if you think about it, Brian has to now spool up and make some decisions or he will seen as taking the job just to hold on to it. So, let’s see what happens. The ballot box will still be found to be open in November. (Although it seems to be moved around a lot lately).

    • Junius says:

      While the ballot box will be still be found to be open, Secretary Kemp’s office will now over see the counting of the votes therein. Double edged sword there, as Karen duly noted. I assume Kemp now won’t be able to fundraise during the session. Not that he’ll need to. Money will pour in to the now presumptive winner. “New Georgia” – hah!

  22. Reality Check says:

    I agree that Sonny should have picked someone who would have just finished out the year and not run for SOS. However, you idiots on here that think that Kemp is part of a good ole boy system and is “friends” with the governer obviously know little about anything that happens down at the gold dome and would probably serve us all better by playing fantasy basketball than wasting yours and our time blogging about Georgia politics.

  23. Georgia Judge says:

    Reality Check,
    Easy there or you will get hit with red ink…..btw, is it an oxymoron to be a conservative blog and have rampant censorship?just curious……

    • HowardRoark says:

      My dad always taught me it’s not enough just to have something to say. It has to be worthwhile.

  24. joescobb says:

    Do you Kemp supporters really believe that Brian was sitting by a warm fire with his family last night, toasting marshmellos, drinking hot chocolate and reading Clifford The Big Red Dog when he suddenly got a phone call from the Governor asking him to be SOS? He made a very measured decision. He begged for the appointment knowing the grassroots would be upset but his hopes are that this tainted appointment will be old news in a matter of days. This isnt an issue of “….the Governor just called me and offered me the job of SOS, I need to serve the people”. If this isnt a “good ole boy ” appointment I dont know what is. How can you look at both resumes and honestly say that Kemp is better qualified than Doug? Just because he WAS a State Senator makes him qualified? You Kemp supporters are trying to make yourself feel better by suggesting this appointment was about, “the best man for the job”, or ” guess what honey, the Governor just called and offered to appoint me SOS.” KEMP IS NECK DEEP IN THIS “insider” move and I lost all respect for him. He should be ashamed of himself…..we’re not all stupid Brian. This RISK is just that….a risk, probably one he didnt have to take. Time to take the gloves off Doug! I have finally made a decision about this race.

      • DMZDave says:

        Kemp has experience and can run the job no problem? Not sure how you make that leap. He’s a two-term, part-time state senator who majored in agricultural economics and builds houses in a bad economy. He tried in vain to convince voters not even 4 years ago that it was really, really his lifelong dream to become the Commissioner of Agriculture. Everyone agrees he’s a nice guy and he clearly wants a job – any job.

    • Reality Check says:

      I am so sure you just decided who you are going to vote for. I am also so glad that you think Doug wouldn’t have taken the appointment and loved every minute of it. Your post made a believer out of me.

      • DMZDave says:

        I don’t believeDoug would not have taken the job if it had been offered. It’s hard to believe I know but the guy really is one of the most principled politicians I have ever met.

        He drove his fellow Republicans on the Sandy Springs City Council crazy by suggesting that “if we have a surplus in the budget, we should give it back, it’s not our money, it belongs to the taxpayers.” A guy like that isn’t going to be getting any appointments from Sonny.

        No, Doug would not have taken the job on an interim basis and he would probably not accept a Nobel Peace Prize he didn’t deserve either. Sometimes you just gotta do the right thing because it is the right thing.

        • I Am Jacks Post says:

          Doug would pass up the appointment because of the character he displayed while serving on the Sandy Springs City Council?
          Ahhh, the bravery involved in standing up to seasoned political backroom brawlers like Karen McEnerny and Tibby DeJulio. The political pressure Doug had to overcome must’ve been unbearable. Seriously.

          • HowardRoark says:

            Well, JP tell me of Brian Kemp’s great triumphs? What about the time he smeared Gary Black as a “liberal lobbyist” and forced him to run out a run off which cost the GOP the general. That was bold leadership.

            Or there was that time in the Senate that he…uh…well…

  25. Georgia Judge says:

    Thats the first thing that remotely resembles intelligence come from your keyboard….heed the advice it will serve you well.

  26. Progressive Dem says:

    Get a grip PP! Do you all really think any governor gives a rat’s behind about the peanut gallery at peach pundit? His responsibility as gov is to pick a capable leader/manager for the position. As a party leader he should also pick someone who can win re-election so the office doesn’t have 2 rookie leaders in a 12 month period. Is it good for the state to go up the learning curve twice? I’m no fan of Gov Sonny, but I think he is acting responsibly, and in the best interest of the state. I think any governor would have appointed someone that he expected would run for the full term. That’s the way the game is played. It never hurts to have a few people in state government who are in debted to you when you are the ex-governor.

    Besides, the average voter doesn’t care about this race. Very few voters know what the job does or the qualifications needed to evaluate a candidate. In some ways taking some of the politics out of the position is a good thing. The oversight role of the SoS should be more technical and less political. School Super, Labor, Insurance and Ag commissioners shouldn’t be elected either. Let the governor appoint a cabinet and get things done.

  27. joescobb says:

    Progressive Dem,

    This statement, “It never hurts to have a few people in state government who are in debted to you when you are the ex-governor” says it all about you.

      • Jeff says:


        If they are not a R, D, or L, they have to petition for ANY partisan race and get 5% of the registered voters in the district to sign it. In the case of this particular race, that would be 5% of the voters statewide.

        Even if they are a L, they have to petition for any partisan race other than state-wide.

        There will be no “other parties” at the ballot box until one of two things happens: 1) We are successful in getting the ballot access laws changed to be equal for EVERYONE. There are a few proposals for this floating around, and I’ve got three different ones on the Equal Ballot Access for All! (Ga Chapter) FB group.

        2) John Monds is elected Governor, thereby breaking the 20% barrier that was put in place during the height of Jim Crowe and at the early stages of the Red Scare. Both of those eras have long since died, and it is time this barrier does as well.

        Number one thing ANY SoS candidate can do to win my vote in November? Pledge to work toward this goal. Oh wait, one already has – David Chastain.

  28. The General says:

    I hate to break into this serious discussion, but can someone from the Ox camp tell me when the Tech game is tomorrow?

  29. inlimine says:

    I wonder what Kemp thinks about this part of Handel’s [slightly modified] press release:

    “I also took into consideration that I did not want any perceived conflicts of interest concerning my overseeing the primary or general elections, investigating complaints that arise, and certifying the results of the elections while a candidate for [Secretary of State] and serving as Secretary of State.”

    Kemp should’ve declined and won it outright. Unless he thought he couldn’t.

    • Holly says:

      Okay, I’m going to get a bunch of negatives here, but let’s look at that statement. Had Karen decided not to run for governor, is she suggesting she wouldn’t have run for a second term for SOS? Or, what about if the race for governor didn’t have as many primary players? Would she still have resigned?

      Don’t get me wrong; it was a shrewd move, but it was all about fundraising capabilities. The ethical statement sounds good… on the surface, at least.

  30. SeeisBelieving says:

    I think the Governor should have used his authority to appoint an interim SoS; a placeholder. Sonny’s decision disrespects the voters. I will be supporting MacGinnitie from now on. My first step is to send $20.10 to his campaign. Consider doing the same if you feel dissed.

  31. Three Jack says:

    why would kemp want to be so closely tied with a failed governor who will likely go down as one of the biggest disappointments in ga political history?

    kemp who already comes across as someone who self-servingly chases political office (any political office) would only hurt himself by accepting secstate appointment…possible big win for his opponent.

    • This really does change the dynamic of the race. While he won’t be able to raise money, he’ll be to round up his donors in a big way.

      It is going to be a full court press for the MacGinnitie folks, which I’m one of them. No offense to Kemp. We’re just going to have to work harder.

  32. Congratulations to Secretary Kemp. This is quite the interesting development. I’m surprised he wasn’t the original pick.

    When is the last time you’ve seen a legislator or former buck one of their own? It’s rare, and if they do they’re considered fringe or outsiders.

    A friend called and suggested I google “Brian Kemp Georgia”. I did and had a chuckle “Kemp, Brian for Agriculture Commissioner ” . This is the meta tag his website guru’s have put on the SoS website. I’m not being critical of Brian, but I would imagine he spent some big dollars on his consultants. They missed a minor detail. It needs to be corrected.

  33. Three Jack says:

    oops, didn’t realize announcement already made…my bad, even more bad for brian who snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

  34. GOPGeorgia says:

    If Kemp had turned it down and then it was offered to MacGinnatie, and he accepted, would we be hearing about how it was offered to Kemp first? (joke.)

    BTW, I’m going to make a few posts so my points can be voted up or down on that post.

  35. GOPGeorgia says:

    The Rhetorical question, “is it good for Georgia?” has been asked. My answer is yes and no, but a little more yes than no. Many will feel like the playing field has been extremely upset and lopsided by the gov’s pick. And they are right. It doesn’t hurt to have an incumbent Governor on your side when you are running for an office. The Governor did cast his vote in this primary and he has a bigger vote than anyone else in the state. I understand the desire to have the Governor appoint a “caretaker” SOS who would not run for election. It seems fairer that way; but would that be really better for Georgia to have to switch office holders again just for the sake of being perceived as fair?

    If you say yes, then shouldn’t we require ALL officeholders to resign so that their challengers can have a “fair” election?

    • Lawton Sack says:

      I personally feel that anyone who is running for an elected position that is different than their current elected position should resign. I have worked with many different types of campaigns throughout the years. To me it appears that it would be extremely difficult for an elected official to campaign for a different position and do both to the best of their abilities. They would have to pull time away from their current position to campaign to be successful.

      The lines also start to blur. Is it a campaign visit or is it an official visit? At any given moment, are they a candidate or are they an officer? People are going to raise those questions and have done so here on Peach Pundit. The only way to clear that is to be one or the other.

      I can understand the other argument where people feel like the elected official is quitting, though. We elect someone to four/six years and I can understand that there is a desire to see them fulfill that. Unless they are term limited, though, aren’t they announcing to the world that they want to leave their current job?

      It is really strange at the Federal level when someone loses their bid to be President or Vice-President and they go right back to their Senate or House seat or to being Governor again.

  36. GOPGeorgia says:

    The reason I say more yes than no is that the Governor picked someone who has an active interest in the office and has ideas of how things should be done. Brian was running for the office and when you have the chance to get what you are seeking a year early, you yell “happy birthday to me.” He should not have turned it down. If you are seeking an office and it is handed to you, you don’t say “I can’t take it because it’s not fair to my opponent.” A candidate would say, “I wanted to do this job for the people of Georgia and I am blessed to have a chance to start doing that job now. Please watch me carefully, help me get it right for Georgia’s sake, and if I am not doing the job well enough, come election time, please vote for the person who you think will do the job best.”

    • Jeff says:


      If he was intent on picking someone with General Assembly experience, why couldn’t he have at least picked someone who has shown some interest/ability in the office via the committee work they’ve done and the bills they’ve introduced?

      Cole didn’t fit that bill at all, though I haven’t yet looked into whether Kemp did or not – I’ve got my hands full sorting through the 2009 stuff alone!

    • Holly says:

      I agree with you on some level. However, my litmus is whether I’d still feel that way if Sonny had chosen Doug over Brian.

      No, it wasn’t fair to the candidates, and it wasn’t fair to the McGinnite supporters – many of whom have done a lot of work for a candidate they believe in strongly.

      You’re right in that voters can vote Brian out if they don’t think he’s done a good job, but my point in several of my posts on this thread is that most voters just don’t pay attention to what’s going on. It’s taken a national tainted peanuts scandal to put Tommy Irvin in hot water. Therefore, the likelihood is that Brian will win based on the “I” alone, even though there are a few PPers who are up in arms today over the appointment.

      I’m proud of Doug for not dropping out, though. It would have been easy to quit, but apparently he’s made of much stronger stuff.

  37. GOPGeorgia says:

    I like Doug and I like Brian. Both are good men. The state of Georgia would do well with either of these candidates as SOS. We will get to see what type of job Kemp does between now and the primary. I feel a little sad for Doug and a little happy for Brian. We all want fair elections. This is the situation we have been handed and we will have our choices to make. Who knows, in 48 hours, the situation may change again?

  38. jackson says:

    I think all this speculation by some on here is hilarious. Kemp is not close with Sonny. Sorry folks. If he was, wouldnt the Governor have supporter him in the Ag race instead of working against him? Why would he appoint Jim Cole — WHO SAID HE WOULD RUN — instead of Kemp, if Kemp was a good ol’ boy.

    I agree there can be an argument for a caretaker, but there is also an argument for not having a divisive primary. Neither argument has anything to do with Kemp’s character or honesty. Those that know him — not just political hacks and supporters that visit this site — know he is a straight shooter and a decent man.

    Its obvious that people have taken sides. But please, dont try and fool everyone into thinking that you weren’t already on one side or the other before the decision. That silly and demeans the blog and having actual discussions.

    I dont like Sonny Perdue. I think he squandered many opportunities as Governor. But he appointed Kemp. IF you still think McGinnite is the best choice, and that having a primary that drains resources in one of the major races in the state — one that a decent democrat could actually win — then thats fine. But refrain from trashing Kemp for taking it. McGinnitie would have done the same thing and either would be crazy for not doing so.

    • HowardRoark says:

      So you really buy the hot cocoa theory? Kemp was just ice skating in Centenial Park with his kids when the governor randomly called him? “Marty, what eva could da gubna be callin’ me fo dis fine evenin’? What a pleasant suprise”

      Give me a break. At best you’re niave and at worst you’re lying to yourself. Kemp is a hack. He was about to steamrolled again by a savvy outsider with better resume and couldn’t take it.

  39. jackson says:

    Actually Howard, thats exactly what happened. Except it was Monday morning so I don’t think he was skating with his kids. But as an astute insider, you probably know that already.

    I’m still amazed at how logic is missed on you.

    If Sonny wanted to help Brian, why wouldn’t he appoint him in the first place instead of initially appointing a guy that would run against Kemp? That doesn’t make sense.

    Why would Brian beg for the appointment after the Governor already said he was appointing Cole? That doesn’t fly.

    Cole obviously decided this weekend he wasn’t going to do it. So that didn’t leave a whole lot of time for Brian to work some backroom deal. If Sonny wanted a backroom deal, why wouldnt he do one in the first place with Kemp?

    You obviously dont know Kemp by your statement he is “a hack.” Even many folks working for McGinnitie will tell you that. IF that were the case, he wouldn’t have been able to convince over a hundred of his fellow legislators to support him (can Doug McGinnitie even get a few of his city council colleagues to support him?)

    I am not sure I follow your logic that Kemp was getting steamrolled either. Kemp raised more financial support, has hundreds of legislators and local officials supporting him across the state and was generally accepted as the leading candidate.

    Your the naive one if you think that winning a few strawpolls means you are the front runner. Good luck in your new career as a political consultant or pundit. I am sure you will do a fantastic job.

    Think about it. If you tell more candidates that things like more yard signs, more peach pundit posts, and that straw polls win races. You could be the next Lee Atwater!

    • HowardRoark says:

      I don’t know who you were aiming for with that post, but you missed. I make far too much money to piddle around in politics. Fortunately for you, I’m off for a few days so I can get on here and give you a much needed cardio work out.

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