Johnson Wins 6th District Straw Poll, UPDATED

Eric Johson led the way in today’s 6th District Straw poll, taking the first place finish with 154 votes. Karen Handel was in a relatively close second place with 130 votes.

Well behind the leading group was Nathan “Did you hear about the Governor’s CREW problem?” Deal, with 69, Ox “23 Days without a hunter safety accident” at 39, Jeff “Don’t confuse me with Otis Putnam” Chapman at 10, and Ray “She told me she was 18” McBerry with 2 reality denying votes.

The only other result I have thus far is Doug MacGinnitie defeating an absent Brian Kemp 256 to 132.

When I get the list of official results, I’ll post them.

The only other totals I received this weekend are from the Insurance Commissioners race, where Gerry Purcell again knocked the cover off the ball, with 360 total votes. Distantly trailing him were Seth Harp with 50, Maria Sheffield with 22, Ralph Hudgens with 19, Dennis Cain at 17, and all other candidates in single digits.


  1. ready2rumble says:

    The 6th district did an awesome job running things today, except for the straw poll. People were walking around with stacks of ballots and there were no controls on one ballot one person.

    • gopgal says:

      I disagree. I received one ballot when I signed in to register my attendance. Next to the registration table was a monitored ballot box. My hand was stamped once I placed my ballot in the box. Looked like excellent controls to me.

    • mondaymorningqb says:

      gopgal: When I got there, the front asked if I got the new ballot and didn’t stamp my hand. I was then asked two or three times on the hallways by different people if I had the new ballot. There were also people collecting these ballots throughout the church who I assume were tied in with the District volunteer group. Considering the labyrinth that was this church (nice, though), I could see where there could be issues with the tallies. Double check the sign in sheet and compare it to the final numbers and you might see some discrepancies.

      Then again, it is your typical free for-all straw poll, so who really cares? I wouldn’t put much stock into it good/bad/or indifferent*.

      *This statement does not apply to campaign volunteer coordinators whose job it is to pack the house and get votes for your candidate.

    • ReaganRepublican says:

      A much more telling straw poll took place at the Georgia State capitol today at the GOP Teen Convention where Gubernatorial front runner Nathan Deal won handily. These kids were not shipped in by campaigns and show a clearer directionality of where their Republican households will place their votes.

    • Mountain Republican says:

      Ready2Rumble is just mad because his candidate can’t even win a major event in her backyard. Ox shows well in Gwinnett, Deal in strong in Hall, and Johnson has support in Chatham. When you can’t win a poll in your home county, it makes you look like Ray McBerry. If she can’t even win in Fulton, how can she do well outside Atlanta?

    • RRWilson says:

      The numbers I got for Senate District 56 are:

      David Belle Isle 182

      John Albers 76

      Brandon Beach 51

      • Part-Time Atlanta says:

        Congrats to David. I’ve heard he doesn’t have the most money but is out working the others. This is the first tangible evidence I’ve seen. Guess his work is paying off.

  2. Tiberius says:

    McClearly and his gang did a good jb putting the event together even though the balloting was a disaster. The non-volunteer crowd was smaller than I had hoped for but its a Saturday in the spring.

  3. smitty says:

    my friends tell me there were multipl walking around with empty blank ballots & were personally offerd multipl ballots and that there were people just handing them out as people were walking around. not saying that anyone cheated but it sounds like someone very easily could have. as the old saying goes vote early and vote often

    • Mozart says:

      Perhaps if we knew about how many people actually attended, we could tell if there was any ballot-stuffing.

      • Republican Lady says:

        Maybe the church can give us the registration numbers for a more concrete estimate. I estimated450 – 500.

        • Doug Grammer says:

          I think it was somewhere in the middle. 325 to 375. Not everyone registered, so you can’t use that to gauge attendance. It was good event.

          • ECSnob says:

            There is no way there were any more than 300people at this event, counting all workers/volunteers. I was personally asked if I wanted to vote in straw poll AGAIN by volunteers. Another worthless straw poll.

            • Doug Grammer says:

              The first printing of the straw poll left off Preston Smith and a few others. They trashed the first straw poll and circulated that there was an updated straw poll. they did not have 300 people there at one time, but when you add those who arrived late and those who left early, I think it’s likely.

              • ECSnob says:

                Totally agreed, no more than 300 for the day. And yes I understand about the ballots. I was explicitly asked if I wanted to vote again after explaining I had voted twice- Once on the original ballot, once one revised.

  4. Mayonnaise says:

    I didn’t see any bus of people show up from Savannah. Johnson beating Ox and Karen in their back yard is pretty impressive.

  5. TidePrideGA says:

    This is by a long shot not the first straw poll this has happened. There is one campaign that has an organized group of volunteers whose job it is to go around collecting loose ballots (people leave them laying around). There is one particular guy you will see at every event walking around with a stack of ballots and he was there today – with his stack of ballots in hand. I’ve seen him several places going around to tables, chairs, etc. picking up ballots.

    Straw polls are a joke and purely a marketing plot to attract attendance.

    • Mozart says:

      They may be a joke…but the 6th District is smack-dab in what is supposed to be Handel-country, and the fact that Handel came in 2nd does look very, very strange, even as a “joke.”

      • TidePrideGA says:

        I don’t disagree that it looks strange – but there aren’t 1500 people in the entire state who will even know this and fewer who will pay attention. It doesn’t affect the outcome in July.

        When you go to these events there are 150/200 people there – and 75% (at least) are the same exact people you see at every other event. Outside of campaign staff/volunteers, there seriously aren’t many of the voters who have ever been to a party event. Those on the campaign trail get wrapped up IN the campaign trail and lose sight of the real world – you know, the one where the hardware store owner in Unadilla or Smyrna votes.

        • HowardRoark says:

          It really is a pity the average voter isn’t more politically in tune. Especially on the state and local level. No wonder we have the issues we do. People really do get the government they deserve.

  6. ReaganRepublican says:

    The Rasmussen poll is real, with proven past results to be the most accurate in Georgia. Johnson is losing big to Barnes for the second straight month by 6 points. Deal is the only GOP candidate winning outside the margin of error, up 7 points.

    • Mayonnaise says:

      Johnson’s showing in the Rasmussen poll is purely due to name recognition. Johnson is currently gaining name recognition with the GOP primary voters. I wouldn’t expect him to do well in general election polling yet. That will come later. His commercials, targeted mailings, and appearances are starting to make a difference with the base. That is evident from the last few straw polls.

      • ReaganRepublican says:

        Georgia is not voting for that raging Cajun. He has not won that many straw polls. And there is no way this straw poll reflects the sixth district. He will be lucky to get 5% of Cherokee County and no more than 7% of north Fulton and Dunwoody and east Cobb. He will be lucky to end up with 6% of the district. So this poll is nonsense. Now Deal winning 69% of the teen Republican straw poll is very reflective statewide of where the major republican families have selected for governor. The Senate chamber was pact with very intelligent teens from all over the state.

        P.S. Rasmussen is by far the most accurate polling organization when it comes to Georgia. Look at there predictions for the last election. Right on the money. You have to face the facts, you are backing a lemon from Louisiana that Georgians want no part of.

      • In The Arena says:

        No, I am pretty sure that the Johnson – Barnes number has a lot to do with the fact that voters have already seen Johnson and Barnes go head to head, and they saw the results. People remember what Barnes did to our state and it wasn’t pretty or symmetrical.

        • SFrazier says:

          Johnsons unfavorable rating is 80% higher than his favorable rating. Hard to win when a lot more republicans hate you than like you.

  7. GabrielSterling says:

    Another statewide in the straw poll at the 6th District was Melvin Everson versus Mark Butler for Labor Commissioner.

    Everson came out with a smashing win:
    Everson 306
    Butler 12

    I’m sure Everson will take 96% any day and be quite pleased.

  8. old political pro says:

    it really is surprising that handel would lose this since Fulton is her base. she still wins handily, just would’ve thought she’d have a better organized effort for this if she was going to attend.

  9. TidePrideGA says:

    If anyone needs further proof the ballot boxes are being stuffed, 404 people voted for the Governor in the straw poll – well over 450 voted for Insurance Commissioner. We all know there’s far more interest in the IC race (!?!) so this makes sense, right?

    • ECSnob says:

      It’s all Gerry has, leave him be, poor guy shows off straw poll wins like medals of honor. Icarus’ tag FTW

      • Part-Time Atlanta says:

        Hahahaha. Best comment of the morning.

        And Tide, that’s a good point. If what you say is accurate that’s a problem–and someone in the Ins. race probably knows the answer.

    • MariettaLegal says:

      TidePrideGA, from other blogs, you have identified yourself as Stephen Northington’s Campaign Manager. That’s fine, but full disclosure, please.

      My understanding from the poll is that most write-ins or undecideds were not provided in the above numbers for the GOV race or any race, which would be understandably higher in the GOV race, and especially now that Scott has pulled out. So before you start throwing around accusations, you might want to get ALL the facts.

      Of course, straw polls are typically only a good indicator of where party activists fall. But, party activists have email lists and become volunteers.

      There were about 200+ new folks who attended the event who don’t follow these events around, and that is a pretty good sampling. I noticed that Mr. Northington garnered a few of these folk’s support in the poll, and came in about the same place as his standing in the previous 2 dozen or so polls.

      If these polls don’t mean much, then I would advise that you not expend so much energy and copy as you do trying to explain their irrelevance.

      I think the video will be available and everyone can judge for themselves who had the strongest performance. The poll was a reflection of how the candidates performed on that particular day with that particular audience. I think it was about right from my viewing of the forum, evaluating each candidate standing side by side. Mr. Purcell polls well in part because of his strong advocacy for interstate sales of health care, which polls with over 75% approval among Republicans, consistent with his results on Saturday. Mr. Northington is a strong advocate against interstate sales, making it crystal clear again on Saturday, which may explain the numbers a little better. But, by all means, everyone interested should obtain a copy of the tape and view it for themselves.

      • TidePrideGA says:

        I certainly don’t deny that I’m Stephen Northington’s campaign manager and in fact have identified myself as such openly as you state. I wasn’t aware I needed to do it in every single post. I’ll start adding that.

        I’ll also take note of the new standard that two posts on one blog is expending inordinate amounts of copy.

        And finally, I’ll stand by ALL of the facts I have – ALL of which I do not necessarily disclose in every (or any) blog posts.

        • MariettaLegal says:

          Thank you TidePrideGA, fair enough…just keep in mind, that every race in Saturday’s straw poll had different total numbers reported. Only 74 people reported voting in the LtGov race for Mr. Cagel and a write-in. So you can’t extrapolate from one candidate to another. So many candidates (9) in the IC race mean more total volunteers/supporters showing up who would make that particular race a priority. And, I think we need to be careful not to demean the organizers who appeared to manage the ballot box carefully and did an exceptional job in putting on one of the most professional events I have attended…thanks.

          • TidePrideGA says:

            Thanks, MariettaLegal. I was just coming here to apologize for the defensive tone of my last post. I really do know better than to fire off a response when I only have, at best, half my attention on this amongst the 20 zillion other things on my desk. You made some very valid points yourself and it was childish to react as I did.

            And please understand that I in no way mean to impugn the 6th. They did, indeed, do a fantastic job Saturday – by far the most professional (and best attendee by those not on the campaign trail) of these events I’ve been to in a long, long time. My disdain is directed 100% at the very nature of straw polls. I don’t even bother to vote in them and haven’t for years – so hey, there’s at least one more vote Stephen would have had!

            All that said, I would love to have your source for the 75% of Republicans who support making health insurance an interstate commerce issue. That would obviously be a very important stat to us and it contradicts pretty much everything I’ve seen (by percentage). You can email me via the campaign.

            Thanks again for your civility!

  10. PaulRevere says:

    I don’t remember Johnson winning many straw polls until recently. Assuming the “issues” with straw polls are a constant, it’s safe to say Johnson is trending in something.

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