Question for the Ox Doubters

Back in the day, there were a few non-Oxendine-supporting commenters (Steve Perkins and myself among others) who knew that John Oxendine was going to make it into the runoff. But we kept getting told by the powers that be that Oxendine had “hit his high water mark” or that his “unfavorables were too high” or that “it’s all name recognition at this point”. They basically told us that, even though he was polling twice as high as any other candidate, that he had no shot of getting into runoff. One of those powers that be, even had this to say to Steve Perkins:

“Keep mocking us for remaining consistent in our thought processes. I’m sure we’ll save a few of your quotes and revisit them in July.”

Well, it’s not quite July yet…but as of right now, I doubt any of the powers that be really want to revist those comments, because Steve Perkins was dead on. As bloggers, I think we often overestimate just how important we are to the political process. We have our purposes, but in the long run, 90% of voters are not even aware of Peach Pundit’s existence, and most of the other 10% could care less. They don’t care how many stories we trot out, day after day, hour after hour, about how bad candidate “X” is. They care about one thing: the letter beside the name.

Judging from the amount of negative “press” the Ox receives here, you’d think he would have already withdrawn from the race. But instead, he still leads in the polls by a comfortable margin and is leading among early voters by a comfortable margin. He will make the runoff. And it is highly likely that he will win the runoff. So here’s my question for the Republicans who are so vehemently bent on the destruction of John Oxendine: If he becomes your party’s nominee, will you vote for him in November?

My prediction is that you will. After all, this state has already elected a former Democrat and shameless panderer twice.

74 comments

    • HowardRoark says:

      Ox and Barnes are equally as bad. I would tend to favor the one who wants to keep my taxes low. Still, I would love to avoid making that choice at all.

      • polisavvy says:

        I know what you mean. It’s like choosing between the rock and the hard place, isn’t it?

        • B Balz says:

          2011-12 budget is going to be deeply deficit due to the lack on one-time stimulus dollas. There will be new taxes, and it doesn’t matter who is in charge.

    • Jimbo says:

      I’ll vote for Oxendine when Hell freezes over. He will hurt the Republican Party, and therefore Georgia, more than ANY of the Democrats would.

  1. LoyaltyIsMyHonor says:

    Let’s have a straw poll on this. Our choices should be:
    – OX
    – Demo nominee

  2. LoyaltyIsMyHonor says:

    “As bloggers, I think we often overestimate just how important we are to the political process. We have our purposes, but in the long run, 90% of voters are not even aware of Peach Pundit’s existence, and most of the other 10% could care less. They don’t care how many stories we trot out, day after day, hour after hour, about how bad candidate “X” is. They care about one thing: the letter beside the name.”

    Good point. We really got our asses kicked over SB 31, and that was literally a united front.

    • Dave Bearse says:

      And 90% of voters not being aware of Peach Pundit’s existence is an understatement. It probably 98% or north of that.

  3. edmund says:

    “We have our purposes, but in the long run, 90% of voters are not even aware of Peach Pundit’s existence, and most of the other 10% could care less.”

    Truer words have never been spoken on this illustrious blog.

  4. Three Jack says:

    no way i vote for ox, didn’t vote for the current poser in the gov office either time. it won’t even be difficult to cast my ballot for monds just as i did for hayes the past 2 elections.

    the real question is, why does the gop keep putting forth posers as candidates, i.e. chambliss, perdueless, cagle, isakson and now ox? how long does the gop remain relevant if this is the best they can offer?

  5. GOPwits says:

    I will either actively support and vote for the Democrat, Libertarian, or for the Independent, but I will not support nor vote for the Oxendine if he is the Republican nominee.

    And yes, I would rather have Roy Barnes as Governor than John Oxendine.

    • KingWulfgar says:

      I 100% agree with GOPwits. I really like Monds, but I’d probably end up voting for Barnes just to try and keep Ox out.

  6. Icarus says:

    I’ve had limited time for commenting/posting lately, but I’ll take a quick stab at Jace’s premise.

    The last time I assessed odds in the Governor’s race was in late December, and I said Ox was 50-50 for a runoff spot. Then it was too early to tell how much more negative news would come out on Ox, and more importantly, if any of the other candidates would take him on directly. All seem to be fighting each other for the other spot, so Ox has received a mostly free ride to date. He’s looking good for a runoff at the moment.

    However, my central point remains. Each campaign essentially started their ground game within the last two weeks. Those that can buy ads just started. Media outlets are now starting to do nightly stories on this race as voters are finally waking up to a campaign that we’ve all been tracking for 2 years.

    My guess is we still have a few surprises for the home stretch.

    As for an overall analysis, I’ll try to write up another post soon so I can put another target on my back for the gathered sock puppets. But I will stand by what I wrote in December. No way, no how, is John Oxendine the Repubican nominee.*

    *and if I’m wrong (hey, it happens), he will not get my vote in November.

    I’ve had limited time for commenting/posting lately, but I’ll take a quick stab at Jace’s premise.

    The last time I assessed odds in the Governor’s race was in late December, and I said Ox was 50-50 for a runoff spot. Then it was too early to tell how much more negative news would come out on Ox, and more importantly, if any of the other candidates would take him on directly. All seem to be fighting each other for the other spot, so Ox has received a mostly free ride to date. He’s looking good for a runoff at the moment.

    However, my central point remains. Each campaign essentially started their ground game within the last two weeks. Those that can buy ads just started. Media outlets are now starting to do nightly stories on this race as voters are finally waking up to a campaign that we’ve all been tracking for 2 years.

    My guess is we still have a few surprises for the home stretch.

    As for an overall analysis, I’ll try to write up another post soon so I can put another target on my back for the gathered sock puppets. But I will stand by what I wrote in December. No way, no how, is John Oxendine the Repubican nominee.*

    *and if I’m wrong (hey, it happens), he will not get my vote in November.

    • Jimbo says:

      The most recent Survey USA poll shows him over 30%, while a few weeks ago polls indicated he was only getting around 25%. I don’t know if I am just being idealistic or it’s wishful thinking, but I also do not believe that Oxendine will make the run-off.

    • ummm-duh says:

      Another point of note: Thanks to the plethora of dirt on Ox, Handel, Deal & Johnson have largely avoided directly attacking him recently, rather focusing on squabbles between themselves. They know that they will earn near-united opposition to Ox should they become the “anyone but Ox” candidate.

      Plus, it will be much easier to make hay over and draw attention to Ox’s ethical mishaps in a two-person field during the runoff

      • GOPwits says:

        Deal is a very close second in terms of scandal and Deal’s scandal is more easily explained than the trash on Ox…

        Seriously – a State Senator who votes to create a program to inspect damaged cars opens a business to inspect the cars and owns and operates it for almost 18 years without any competition when then uses his Congressional Office to maintain the program and oh by the way there is an easy to follow ethics investigation report to boot!

        Ox’s stuff is hard for regular folks to follow…

        • Hill Rat says:

          GOPwits, unfortunately, you are dead wrong on the facts of your premise:

          1. The assembled/salvage vehicle inspection program was created by administrative actions of the Georgia Department of Revenue. You falsely claimed that Deal voted it for it.

          2. You falsely claimed that Deal owned and operated the business. He was one of the investors in a small business that was one of the nine participating inspection stations, and the owner of the station stated on the record that Deal was not involved in the operations of the business.

          3. You falsely claimed that the business operated “without any competition.” Again, there were nine businesses that were selected by the Georgia Department of Revenue to serve as inspection stations. Having eight competitors does not equal “without any competition.” Further, if anyone has a problem with the number of participating inspection stations, then one has a problem with the way the Georgia Department of Revenue was running the program. Deal was not the Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Revenue, and as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Deal had no authority or power over the operations of this Department or program.

          4. You falsely claimed that he “[used] his Congressional Office to maintain the program,” which isn’t true for several reasons, but the most obvious is that the entire premise is dead wrong because the Georgia Department of Revenue did not maintain the program. How could someone have used their office to “maintain a program” when the program was not maintained?

          And one last point/question: If these claims by the OCE had any merit, then why did the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (the real “Ethics Committee”) choose to take no action on the report that the OCE produced for them? The OCE report was issued in January and the Ethics Committee had until late March to do something, but they chose to take no action.

          I look forward to reading your more accurate future posts.

          • Doug Grammer says:

            Hill,

            You left out that the report did not conclude guilt or innocence, but merely stated further investigation was warranted.

  7. The General says:

    Neither. Can’t stand Ox. Can’t stand Barnes.

    I think I’ll have to disconnect my cable because I won’t be able to watch TV without puking after every commercial.

  8. TPNoGa says:

    I will vote for Oxendine if he is the GOP nominee. Redistricting is too important to me. Would have voted for Barnes, but his ads disgusted me.

  9. fishtail says:

    We can blame all this on one man that couldn’t tie his own shoes…Casey Cagle. Look at the mess he has caused.

  10. OriginalGangsta says:

    I will vote for Karen or EJ in a general election, but if the nominee is Ox I will doubtlessly be voting for the Libertarian candidate. I can’t bring myself to vote for that sleazebag. If the nominee is Deal, I’ll have a tough choice to make.

    However, I don’t think Ox will win this election. Whoever makes it into this runoff (most likely Handel or Deal) will pick up 80% of the voters whose candidate lost in the primary. Ox may win the primary, but I honestly do not see him winning a runoff. Too many GA voters despise him and his staffers.

  11. one n done says:

    Can I offer a challenge for tomorrow 6/25/10?
    Whoever can garner the most comments from a posting of any GA political topic tomorrow shall win eleventy billion hypothetical peach pundit bragging points. I want to read sexy and provocative when I look on tomorrow.
    Guidelines: There is only one, Oxendine is exempt as a topic for the mere fact that he is just too damn easy and “sexy” in the media sense

  12. Ooooooh, Jace, you gonna get it now, child. You done dissed da man. He gonna whup you up. Oooooooh…

    And for the record, I’m amazed at the “Republicans” who trashed folks that said they wouldn’t vote for Democrat McCaimnesty if he got the GOP nomination because “the primaries are over, now we need to come together behind the nominee” – and are now boldly proclaiming their strength of character by their willingness to tell the world that they won’t support the Ox if he wins the GOP primary in July. Hypocrites.

    • AlanR says:

      I’m not sure its hypocracy — over the top complaining maybe. The objections to McCain were based on his willingness to abandon conservative principles. Once nominated, he was clearly the lessor of two bad choices.

      The Ox matter is different. There are no policy disagreements. Its about his ethics and character.

      We’ll see what people do after the nomination. I predict that if Ox gets the nomination, no one reading pp will know there is an election for governor.

  13. Doug Grammer says:

    I will be supporting the GOP nominee. Many of you have strong feelings about Com. Oxendine. He isn’t the perfect candidate. There’s no such thing. The Oxendine campaign hasn’t been ran perfectly. No campaign is perfect. His campaign has done a few silly things. So have others. However according to the polls, it looks like he will be in the runoff.

    E.E. can have a secret binder that talk about things that are 10 years old. Is it because he really doesn’t care for Oxendine personally or is he trying to get his candidate elected? I don’t know and I don’t care. It’s a handful of meaningless mud. Got proof something has been done wrong? File an ethics complaint and put all the details out for everyone to see. Anything less is all smoke and no fire.

    Someone in another thread said they thought Com. Oxendine was unethical. I responded by saying I thought they were a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. That doesn’t make it so. The whole Yancy PAC thing needs to be investigated, but I doubt that much will be able to be pinned on the Oxendine campaign. If anyone can find a tape recording of the Commissioner stating he knew what was going on and was OK with it, throw the book at him. I just don’t see it happening.

    Everyone running will have a good idea or two regardless of party or stance in the polls. To question that is not being honest about the situation. If he becomes the GOP nominee, I’ll tell you what ideas he has that I like. I’ll do that for whomever our nominee may be. Roy might even have a good idea left in him, but that doesn’t mean he is the best person for the job.

    • GOPwits says:

      you must have your head in the sand… Ox’s buddies sued in court to block the ethics investigation…

      • Doug Grammer says:

        State mutual (Yancy’s company) sued to keep from having to comply with the ethics investigation after a judge issued a stay on subpoenas to gather evidence. Yancy is in trouble and he’s dragging it out. It helps Com. Oxendine, but it keeps Yancy out of the court longer. The longer he is out of court, the longer he can evade justice.

        I think I know what’s going on. I am in favor of the situation being investigated. I just doubt they will find anything on the Commissioner. We will see. Yancy is in trouble.

        • AlanR says:

          Your defense of Oxendine is admirable, but I look at the table of contents of Erick’s binder, and if you take away the author’s effort to sensationalize things, you see that Oxendine has a long record of ethical screwups. After each, he claims nothing happened and moves on.

          Like the car crash. Who else would say that a GBI report that found you absolutely guilty was biased and just politics? Honorable people have resigned their offices for less.

          • Doug Grammer says:

            Alan,

            What year was the car crash? I’m not saying don’t talk about it, but keep it in context. Is something over 10 years old the best his detractors can do?

                • AlanR says:

                  The crash was in September 1999. Oxendine was not an immature teenager not responsible for his actions.

                  He was 38 years old and had been in office four and one half years. He was old enough to be married and divorced and had children.

                  And it is not the best his detractors can do. As I pointed out, and Icarus agrees (Yikes!) its part of a pattern over the years.

                  A more current example might be traveling with the doctor who needed help in disputes with insurance companies. Remember the Oscars? If Ox had been a congressman or senator he would be being investigated right now, and would be right there with Charlie Rangel. He still hasn’t produced proof that he reimbursed the doctor.

                  Oxendine is incapable of shame.

    • DMZDave says:

      Oxendine’s problems have nothing to do with his poorly run campaign but everything to do with his singular lack of an ethical and moral compass. Now that he has filed for Governor and can’t hurt all those he has shaken down over the years people are coming forward and talking. That’s why Seth Harp said recently he’s learned that he will need to bring a case of Lysol to the Insurance Commissioners office if he’s elected.

      Fortunately for the OX, Atlanta no longer has a newspaper with reporters who actually talk to people. If they did, all those Oxendine regulated companies would likely come forward and relate how the Ox has operated for years. What he did was create a problem for an insurance company, call them in and suggest that this could all be resolved or they could prevent problems like this in the future if he could just get to know the company leadership on a “personal level.” Regulated industries are barred from giving campaign donations to the Commish but their leadership, under the gun, can give “personal” donations. Are you following this Doug?

      This dreadful man who rented a bus to transport mentally handicapped people to the polls to vote for him back in his Democrat days has spent the past 18 years becoming an even worse human being. If Ox gets the nomination, the choices the informed electorate will have are between an arrogant liberal Democrat and and arrogant and unethical Democrat. If Georgia Republicans were to grant Barnes his wish and nominate Oxendine, I’d probably vote for Isakson, Tom Price,Casey, and hopefully Gerry Purcell, Doug Macginnittie and Melvin Everson and skip the governor’s race as I can’t imagine in good conscience voting for either Oxendine or Barnes.

      • Doug Grammer says:

        If follow it fine. If there’s an ounce of truth to half the things you said, why haven’t you or the people who were “pressured” to give made an ethics complaint?

        As it is, you are hiding behind a screen name, making accusations with no proof and if you had any proof, you haven’t filed. I don’t like listening to crybabies. If there an ethics complaint filed, post it and I will read. If not, quit crying.

        • Icarus says:

          Perhaps you missed the ACTUAL ethics complaints filed against Ox’s campaign and the Alabama PACs. You know, the one’s they stalled on, then filed suit in a court with one of Ox’s daddy’s friends as judge to say “we stalled enough and now it’s too close to an election”.

          Seriously Doug, is having an “R” next to someone’s name all that it take to make you someone’s bitch?

          (I now warn myself that if I use that language again in a less than civil tone I’ll be put in time out.)

          • Doug Grammer says:

            No I didn’t miss that one. The 52 or so complaints I am missing are from the table of contents from the secret binder and other things mentioned on here.

            Missing ethics complaint for people pressured to give money (other than yancy.)…..

            Missing ethics complaint for bus load of voters for delegate status….

            (from the binder)
            Missing ethics complaint from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia…

            Missing ethics complaint for patronage job for Oxendine law firm…

            Missing ethics complaint for no bid contracts to campaign consultants…

            I’m not going to list everything, including the allegations of affairs, but you get the idea. I’m not saying none of this happened. It all may have happened. I’m saying I’m tired of see you (and others) cry about it and not do something other than talk about it. You are misconstruing my challenge to do something other than talk as a defense. Quit complaining and acting like a little girl. If you can’t, all you have in your hands is a handful of meaningless mud that you are throwing in hopes of getting someone else elected.

            (I’ll respond to your post in similar tone, but without the vulgarity.) I’ll give a little more respect than I am given.

            • bowersville says:

              It doesn’t take an ethics complaint to be an informed voter. If your standard is “no ethics complaint” no problem, God help the Republican party.

              I think it’s time that those who have taken a party loyalty oath, that even if Adolph Hitler is the GOP nominee, they have sworn to blindly support them post that full disclosure each and every time they post.

              When nothing else is left, an accusation of hiding behind a moniker is a weak arguement. The fact that ethics complaints have not been filed is a stupid argument. I strongly suggest that if one grows tired of reading a political blog, take an exit instead of resorting to accusing everyone of being cry babies.

              I’m not saying it didn’t happen, but it could have happened or maybe it didn’t, I don’t know because no one has stepped up and filed an ethics complaint and there is no finding of fact is absolutely the most ignorant arguement ever.

              Politics is a war of words and ideas and don’t worry Doug, the voters will do something about it at the ballot box.

              Now continue on over the cliff as I’m placing myself in exile again.

              • Doug Grammer says:

                So you are in favor of throwing as much mud as possible, deserved or not, and calling that the primary?

                My standard is not “no ethics complaint, no problem,” but when you say you have a secret binder full of EVIDENCE and it’s not used to do anything other than talk, that’s when I have a problem.

                If Adolph Hitler were the party nominee, I would go to a campaign event to show support and then poison his drink. The truth is Adolph Hitler would never be the party nominee. He’s dead. Comparing those running to him is despicable. I trust the will of the voters. You don’t know who has my vote, but you know I will support the nominee. There is one person running that I wouldn’t actively support, but I’ll bet my arm he won’t make the run off. There’s another I haven’t met and I’ll bet my other arm he won’t make it either. The other candidates left aren’t perfect, but I’m willing to bet all of them are better than Gov. Barnes.

                You suggestion that I avert my eyes when I see BS is an option. Another option is to call it like I see it, and a lot of what I see is BS. If I see someone crying like a baby but buying into every word from the secret binder, then they are a crying baby.

                I can’t wait until July 20 and the run off, but I guess I’ll have to.

                • AlanR says:

                  I think throwing as much record as possible is healthy and appropriate in a primary. Go back to the table of contents, and without the sensational tone, look at the set of issues. The reason it looks like its all ethics stuff is because that’s Oxendine’s record. If he had not had all the problems over the years no single event would be more than an embarassement.

                  Karen Handel tried to raise money and votes in the Atlanta gay community. She didn’t quite tell the whole truth about it when she got called on it this time. She’ll survive, because it is clearly an out of character mistake for Handel to lie. Handel doesn’t get in some sort of a jam like this every year. A few bad days for Karen, and back to the rough and tumble. Being governor is a lot worse.

                  But with Oxendine its something you can count on — he’ll get caught doing something outrageous soon.

                  And for the record, I’ll vote for a crooked R who will vote conservative over a socialist of high integrity and good will every single time.

                  • Doug Grammer says:

                    The first item on the table on contents under ethics is: ethical lapses, the low lights. Is that a record in of itself? It also lists: 2002 reelection campaign. I guess it’s unethical to run for reelection? I have no clue what’s being alleged there. Most of the stuff in the table of contents are things I’ve never heard of and half of them I can barely tell what they are trying to say. If your going to bring up a record, bring up the whole record, WITH DETAILS. As it is, it’s just half rumor, half possible fact. That equals mud in my book especially when it could be cleared up by scanning the whole binder and sending it out via e-mail or posting it online. I would read it, as would hundreds and perhaps thousands of Georgians.

                    • AlanR says:

                      I apologize for assuming you have followed Oxendine’s career as closely as others. And I agree with your observation about the binder. Why not just put it up? Then you could get a better sense of Oxendine’s career.

                      And I’m not disuading you from supporting him. Better a conservative crook than a well meaning socialist. Less damage done in the long run.

                    • Doug Grammer says:

                      Alan,

                      No problem in assuming things, but your instincts appear to be kicking in. I live in NW Georgia where 90% of my news is from Chattanooga. I have had a subscription or two in the past to my local county paper, but never to the AJC. I’ve met the commissioner many times and I tend to like him personally, but I probably don’t know him as well as you think I might. I can tell you that he gave money to one of the charities that I support.

                      I’ve known PSC Bobby Baker since he was running for the first time. He was elected before Com. Oxendine and I have no clue about any problems with him, if any are alleged to exist. Not knowing the details of a candidates past actually gives me the perspective of a voter elsewhere in the state that hasn’t been paying attention. I’ve heard about some problems here and there, but I take the attitude that if it happened 10 years ago, he should have been fined, put in jail or cleared of it. As far as I know he’s paid no fines, and it’s obvious he’s not in jail.

                      Am I to believe that the GBI, or better yet, the FBI wouldn’t want to take down a statewide elected official? How good would that look on a resume of a DA, Judge, or law enforcement official? There wasn’t enough to take him down, so until someone can PROVE otherwise, I will view it as all allegations and rumors.

  14. The past few years have been a stressful period for me, as I have sometimes over-committed myself on a number of fronts. Peach Pundit is often a way for me to take a short break when I’m procrastinating from something. When you frequently post in a stressed-out state of mind, it’s all too easy to lose perspective on just how you sound.

    Quite often I will regret the severity of my tone when I look back on it later. I routinely wonder if a comment was a bit too snarky, a bit too harsh, a bit too inconsiderate of the feelings and perspectives of others.

    It is at such times that we truly need someone to place a warm hand of support on our shoulder and say: “No, friend. You are okay. It’s just that you are right… and all those goofs are wrong“.

    Thank you, Jace.

    (I kid, folks!)

  15. BigEL2010 says:

    No way would I ever vote for John Oxendine. Personally, I don’t think he will be the nominee. 75% of the people who vote for the other candidates who do not make the runoff will vote for choice B ( Deal, Handel or Johnson). I am a lifelong Republican, but I can’t vote for him, just that simple.

    • Jimbo says:

      This past Tuesday, and most prior history, has shown us that whoever gets more votes in a primary usually wins the run-off.

  16. Technocrat says:

    “75% of the people who vote for the other candidates who do not make the runoff will vote for choice B ( Deal, Handel or Johnson). ”

    When X gets 42% that leaves 58% minus 20% or 38% as immediate losers. 75% of 38% = 28.5% added to 20% [next best showing in Primary] = 48.5%…………….. with X at 51.5% on Aug 10……………….now if everyone on PP doesn’t vote or votes non republican that still leaves 51.40% fo X.

  17. Hill Rat says:

    It would take Adolf Hitler’s reanimated corpse running against Oxendine for me to even think about voting for that slimeball.

Comments are closed.