Without A Runoff, Barnes Now Free To Ignore Democrats

July 24, 2010 11:03 am

by Icarus · 51 comments

And by “ignore Democrats”, I mean the Commander and Chief. And, those who support him.

Jim Galloway brings us word this morning that while President Barack Obama will be in Atlanta for a couple of events on August 2nd, Roy Barnes will be in South Georgia and has “no plans to change the schedule”.

Barnes upset some of the more “progressive” elements of his party when he read poll numbers showing 2/3 of Georgians support an Arizona type immigration law, and decided he did too. Now he fears being photographed with the President of his own party. Barnes didn’t support Obama in 2008 either, choosing instead the man with the better hair.

While it may appear to be a “smart” strategy to move to the center while the Republicans are trying to drive off a cliff to right, a word of caution; Those on the left most likely won’t ever vote for one of the Republicans, but they may stay home.

I’ve heard this from a few of the Democrats who post here, and I won’t try to steal too much of their case. I know there are some who are vocal who are tired of Georgia’s Democratic political establishment distancing itself from the President. I just don’t know how many of them there are. (but I have to admit I hope its a lot.)

Tireless July 24, 2010 at 11:08 am

By November Barnes will be considerably to the right of Handel. This assumes Handel is honest and says what she really believes.

macho July 24, 2010 at 12:46 pm

As Deal’s entire voting record is starting to come to light, i.e. abortion, I’m starting to wonder where he really stands on the issues.

DoubleDawg3 July 24, 2010 at 11:16 am

Sounds like the Dems should have just recruited Zell to run for another term if Barnes is going to be “going rogue” on them anyway! ha

DoubleDawg3 July 24, 2010 at 11:17 am

It’s completely off-topic, but how long did Steve Tarvin pay for his ad to stay up on Peach Pundit? It’s not helping him too much anymore.

galiberal July 24, 2010 at 11:36 am

I do not think many of the liberal democrats will be staying home. Most of the “liberal” democrats that you say will stay home are likely those who are young and support Obama (college age, young adults). These voters will be turned out by Education, which is a major issue for them. The extra $100 in fees every semester should be a wake up call to all children.

The others might be members of the LGBT community, environmentalists, and a few others. The Barnes campaign will have to figure out how to moderate its stances. I know Barnes does not support Gay Marriage, but the LGBT community has gotten use to that in Georgia. They will be looking at key things like rights, adoptions, and a few other things.

It is important to realize this about the democratic ticket. We have a diverse ticket. A very energetic female, a black male, a person from middle GA, and a popular ex-governor. We have diversity of race, gender, and location covered in our ticket.

What you got?

Icarus July 24, 2010 at 11:43 am

Well, our process may be ugly at times, we try to figure out who’s going to lead and govern best.

But I have to admit, selecting by a quota system instead of letting the best person win would be cleaner and more efficient.

galiberal July 24, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Why do you have to choose between the two? The voters decided who would vote be best during the primary, and it just happened to work out that way :)

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 2:47 pm

So, the best qualified to lead and govern always just happen to be white? And top vote-getters in the GOP gubernatorial primary included 2 guys with severe ethics issues (Oxendine, Deal) and a woman without a college degree (Handel)? Ah, but they are white, which automatically makes them qualified, and not quota selections.

Thanks for putting your true beliefs out on the table. And it is precisely because of those beliefs that the “quota blacks” avoid the GOP like the plague, and why your support among Hispanics, who gave you 60% of the vote during the Reagan era, is declining.

As the Georgia GOP has given us your share of corrupt people and lowlights like Matt Mattingly, Newt Gingrich, Bob Barr and Sonny Perdue, methinks that either your alleged commitment to merit is overstated, or what you consider to merit is detached from reality.

ACCmoderate July 24, 2010 at 10:13 pm

Selected by quota? I believe it was the GOP that put forward Michael Steele as their Chairman on the basis of his skin-color (Lord knows it wasn’t leadership ability). How’s that working out for you?

I’m sure Republicans would employ a quota if they could attract more people than stuffy old white people in Master’s polos.

macho July 24, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Let’s be honest – young adults never represent a significant amount of the voting population, and the LGBT community just isn’t going to have that much influence in GA politics. When you’re talking about Georgia Democrats, you are talking about urban blacks. So alienating yourself from Obama isn’t going to cause any Democrats to vote for Handel, but it sure could cause some to just stay home.

galiberal July 24, 2010 at 2:14 pm

The LGBT community may not have the numbers, but they have some $$$.

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 2:56 pm

“When you’re talking about Georgia Democrats, you are talking about urban blacks.” Let me guess … Tea Party member, right? Fan of the “Tea Party Express” guy who wrote the “colored folks” memo? Blacks make up only 40% of registered Democratic voters. Plus, much of the 40% lives outside Fulton-DeKalb. Also, the vast majority of the independent voters who lean Democratic are white. They have always voted for the GOP since Reagan, but they are the ones who decide gubernatorial and senate races. And the only GOP governor that they have supported since, well forever, is Sonny Perdue.

And Obama not appearing with Barnes is only going to be an issue of Obama makes it an issue. Since the Obama White House knows that they have a decent shot at getting a governor’s office back – and since Barnes and Obama aren’t close anyway – he has no reason to make it an issue. And any Georgia Democrat who abandons Barnes over this is just someone who was looking for a reason to justify not backing Barnes and staying home.

Andre July 24, 2010 at 11:58 am

I, for one, am glad that the Democratic gubernatorial nominee will not be appearing with a president that is toxic to his own political party in this state.

The GOP will do its best to hang the Obama albatross around the neck of Georgia’s Democratic ticket.

The best way for Democrats to combat that is by focusing on a platform that puts Georgia first.

Georgia Democrats should steer clear of President Obama, assert the independence of the state Democratic Party and not hesitate to criticize national Democratic leadership when necessary.

Harry July 24, 2010 at 12:05 pm

That’s smart. It’s a good thing. Both parties should assert more independence.

ACCmoderate July 24, 2010 at 10:14 pm

The only “independence” the Georgia GOP thinks about is secession.

Tireless July 24, 2010 at 12:13 pm

This is a serious question. On what issues does Barnes have a different position than Handel?

Gay marriages…..both say they are against them.

Abortion…..both say they are for them.

Taxes……both say they are for more. Handel is looking at eliminating certain sales tax exemptions…..to the econtards, that means raising taxes.

Budget cuts…….both say they will not touch teacher salaries to close the budget deficits.

Gun control ……. Roy has an A+ rating from the NRA and he owns guns, Handel says she bought a lifetime membership with the NRA but doesn’t own any guns.

Obamacare……..Roy says he would fight elements of it, Handel has been endorsed by Mitt RomneyCare so I assume she is pro-universal health care.

Eliminating income taxes…….Roy doesn’t support that and Handel, as of last night, seems to be recognizing wiping out $8b of income taxes and raising sales tax 300% may not be a viable solution.

On what issues do these candidates disagree?

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 3:00 pm

Handel is a social moderate by Republican standards. Barnes is a social moderate by GOP standards. So, to claim that Handel supports abortion rights is a stretch. She won’t be any worse for Georgia Right To Life than Sonny Perdue or Nathan Deal was. GRTL is simply upset that she is a Fulton County politician. For them, it is “good old boy politics”, someone outside of their little club getting in and upsetting the apple cart. They can’t have that. If Handel was from Gwinnett or Forsyth, GRTL would be falling all over her just they are over the lady who will be governor in South Carolina (who if you recall was also subjected to vicious attacks by their own good old boy network before Palin and the Tea Party people came in and rescued her).

bowersville July 25, 2010 at 9:23 am

In a GaGOP primary it’s cute to point out Handel’s and Barnes’ positions by using quite a stretch of political imagination to point out Deal’s campaign rhetoric as the “most conservative candidate” in the race. Especially since it’s been pointed out that some of the rhetoric has been nothing but hypocritial hoopla surrounding Planned Parenthood funding.

Both (Handel & Barnes) will not touch teacher salaries? Will Deal?

RoyB has an A+ rating from the NRA and Handel is a lifetime member? I strongly suspect Deal has the same A+ rating and that A+ rating for Barnes will go a long way on his current trek through south Georgia.

I recognize what is meant to be implied, Deal is the most conservative. However, I read 3 interesting article’s this morning. One from Dalton and 2 from the AJC. Two article’s about the Deal/Handel debate in Dalton, and one about Barnes stumping in south Georgia. The two article’s about the debate mention little if anything beyond the differences in social positions and of course the Palin vs. Newt endorsements.

Meanwhile Barnes is in the counties he lost to Perdue talking up jobs, growth, education etc and I find the comparison of the Handel/Barnes positions interesting but in a different manner. May I point out the real meaning while disregarding the political hype? As I write, Barnes is running a right of center campaign in south Georgia.

This question is for Handel & Deal, what’s the old saying about fiddling while Rome is burning?

macho July 24, 2010 at 12:56 pm

What’s going to be fascinating is a guy like Barnes has enough celebrity power to think he can take the Dems for granted and start reaching out to GA, rural swing voters, the first step of which is denying any relationship with Obama. But you take a guy like Thurmond, who doesn’t have the celebrity power, well I bet he got “invited” to the Obama event and will be in attendance. Thurmond can’t afford to take the base for granted and needs to make sure they turn out.

What’ really interesting is if the base does turn out they’ll obviously vote for Barnes and Thurmond, but I’m sure Barnes’ is strategy will be one of publicly taking the base for granted with behind the scenes bus rides and free lunches on voting day, while Thurmond will be working the base more publicly.

I’m not sure a Democrat, in Georgia, where the black voter is going to make or break you, can afford to give Obama the finger.

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 3:04 pm

Barnes was a very powerful, popular governor of Georgia with a strong support base in the WHITE suburbs before the Confederate flag issue and the northern arc ruined him. (Allow me to say that the black leadership has never forgiven Tyrone Brooks for costing Barnes the governorship by pressing that issue, and Brooks hasn’t been heard from again since.) And Barnes won a runoff against two very formidable black challengers with 66% of the vote, meaning that he got A LOT of black voters. As far as the “urban blacks” nonsense (gee, do you even WANT the GOP to court black voters?) he has Kasim Reed to get the Atlanta-DeKalb machine on his side.

Sorry, you are barking up the wrong tree.

seenbetrdayz July 24, 2010 at 4:53 pm

I agree. I’ve stated here before that I can admire someone who has the guts to stand up to party ‘leaders’ when those leaders are wrong.

That’s not to say that avoiding Obama is necessarily ‘standing up’ to him, but at least he’s not *** kissing. Refreshing, at least.

Roy Barnes could be to Georgia what Dem. Gov. Brian Schweitzer is to Montana. Someone who can remind the Federal Government from time to time that there are issues that we like to settle amongst ourselves in our states and local governments.

But, as always, actions speak louder than words, and words spoken on the campaign trail rarely match the actions.

NoTeabagging July 24, 2010 at 12:48 pm

Roy is smart. Distance yourself from the national and state Democratic Party too. if he can. Candidates need to realize voters are ticked at both parties and their childish control issues. The political parties, and their stick together attitude, are slowing down progress.

macho July 24, 2010 at 12:58 pm

Funny, I don’t see Republican candidates denying their conservative roots as much I see Democrat candidates denying their liberal roots.

macho July 24, 2010 at 12:59 pm

Take a guy like Barnes. That dude was a major supporter of Edwards, who was running to the left of Obama.

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 3:30 pm

Gee, could the fact that Edwards was from neighboring North Carolina, and was in the Senate while Barnes was governor have anything to do with it?

Also, Republicans from the northeast and the west coast did their best to distance themselves from George W. Bush also, especially in 2006 and in 2008. And in the 2008 GOP primary and presidential race, Bush’s endorsement was never solicited, Bush never campaigned or even so much as raised money for anybody, and several of the GOP contenders actually criticized Bush and the GOP Congress. John McCain tried his level best to distance himself from the GOP Congress that he had been a member of for over 25 years. Or have you forgotten about that already?

Andre July 24, 2010 at 1:12 pm

Not all Democrats have liberal roots or are liberal.

That’s why some Democrats would rather not be associated with the national party or its more liberal members.

Dave Bearse July 24, 2010 at 1:24 pm

Simply a post that seeks to slam Barnes being able to campaign on the real concerns of Georgians like education, the economy, water, and transportation, while Handel and Deal argueg who is more anti-gay and pro-life, the most important issues to the Georgia GOP.

Progressive Dem July 24, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Barnes has already reached out to the black community in DeKalb, Fulton, Rockdale, Henry and Clayton counties. Those are solid Barnes votes. The key will be driving turnout in November. Michael Thurmond will have his photo taken with the President along with Kasim Reed, John Lewis, Hank Johnson and David Scott. There won’t be grudges against Barnes, just Democrats grateful to be closer to the center of the photograph.

ProgressivePeach July 24, 2010 at 1:53 pm

Barnes is writing off the left wing of his party, but by doing so he’s guaranteeing his defeat. His support among progressives in the state was weak, and by shunning the president and pandering to zenophobes, he ensures that Dems will play the same role in his defeat that teachers did eight years ago.

If Handel wins the primary and then eschews Palin and trys to move to the middle (which most PP posters seem to think is where she truly belongs) she’ll siphon off moderate and even some left voters that Barnes needs.

As Harry Truman said, when voters have the choice of a real Republican or a Democrat fake Republican, they’ll choose the real article every time.

Gerald July 24, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Progressive Peach:

Oh please. When was the last Democratic governor to seek support among progressives? Barnes? Nope. Miller? Nope. Harris? Nope. Carter? Nope. The reason is that there are practically no progressives in Georgia. When people seek statewide office as progressives in Georgia, they get crushed. Sorry, Georgia is not California, Massachusetts or Michigan. And if those states were so great, you’d be living there.

seenbetrdayz July 24, 2010 at 5:38 pm

Profoundly truthful, Gerald.

ACCmoderate July 24, 2010 at 10:21 pm

PP,
If Handel wins the primary, its going to be hard for her to distance herself from Palin. Especially if Palin makes an appearance down here during the runoff.

The endorsement has already been front-page news… from here on out, moderates are going to associate Karen Handel with Sarah Palin, whether she likes it or not.

Don’t count on Handel swaying large chunks of the moderate vote. The fact that Roy is cruising South Georgia looking to convert some of those swing votes is proof that he’s pretty positive Handel will have a tough road to hoe with the “moderates”

Gerald July 25, 2010 at 11:33 am

ACC”moderate”:

What universe are you living in? Georgia generally votes for GOP candidates for president by like 60% of the vote. Most of the congressional delegation is Republican, so are both senators, and so are most of the midlevel executive offices. You guys keep wanting to pretend that this state is New York or California but it isn’t. Republicans do not have to “run back to the center” to win statewide office. The “moderates” and “independents” in Georgia would be considered far right in Massaschusetts and Oregon.

People associating Palin with Handel is a good thing. It is going to get a lot of women who see Palin as a trailblazer and want the first female governor to come in and clean up the corruption and mess that the good ole boys club left behind – as Palin did – a second look. It gives Norwood the “family values” image that she currently lacks by association. And plus, in an election where no one knows – or likes – the candidates, endorsements matter. What national Democratic figure is going to give Barnes an endorsement that he actually wants, that makes him appear moderate? None, because there aren’t any Democrats – not even Harry Reid – that is viewed as moderate and are national figures. Maybe Zell Miller and Sam Nunn will endorse Barnes, but that’s it.

Gerald July 25, 2010 at 11:35 am

And by the way … Handel is a Fulton County politician. Most folks in Georgia view Atlanta as the closest thing that we have to New York, Chicago or Los Angeles. Her being from there will make her moderate by definition, just as Roy Barnes’ being from Cobb County gave him a “good ole’ boy” image.

Dave Bearse July 25, 2010 at 4:02 pm

It’s good to hear Handel will be cleaning up the corruption she should be quite familiar with as a charter member of the Perdue’s good ‘ole boys team.

slyram July 24, 2010 at 4:42 pm

Breakout the popcorn and south Georgia peanuts because this election year is going to have more drama that Jolie’s Salt and more twist that a mile of bad roads. A Democrat candidate can’t ignore the Dem based or the Obama supporters. While the national Dem Team from the two coasts tends to be a little too liberal for most Georgians, the Blue Dog types balance national party with southern sensibility.

Governor Barnes will be strong in November and could win with a coalition of traditional Democrats and moderates but skipping an Obama event isn’t a wise move. Again, some people are more Obamacrat than Democrat. I bet that south Georgia event gets rescheduled between now and then.

It will be interesting watching whom the GOP brings out of the governor primary. Has Deal’s time in Chocolate Cities (Atlanta and D.C.) given him a better vibe with our community than other north Georgians. I still am impressed that Handel attended high school in suburban D.C.—say what you want on the Right but that’s something to me; like Jack Kingston childhood time in Africa. Calm down, D.C. isn’t Africa but exposure to a range of cultures is a cool thing for those seeking statewide office.

Rev. Herman Cain is always saying “they think you are stupid” and he might be right if anyone thinks these congressional and governor candidates can blow off someone with Mandela status and the average voter not notice. Sugar, Honey, Iced Tea.

I bet Bill Clinton hasn’t caught wind of this. What happens if Handel emerges and Dem women want their Obama moment? Black women voters could actually make that vote.

Progressive Dem July 24, 2010 at 6:08 pm

You might call Harman Cain a Godfather since his days with a pizza company, but I don’t think he is entitled to reverend.

Barnes has already teed up endorsements from key black leaders including the preachers from the mega churchs in DeKalb and Fulton. I don’t believe any of the black leaders is going to make any kind of noise about Barnes being absent. Obama certainly won’t. The GOP on PP will try to use it at a wedge, but their whistling in the wind on this non-issue. It seems the GOP only wants to talk about issues – over which they have no control.

ACCmoderate July 24, 2010 at 10:25 pm

Um. Democratic women proved in 2008 that they don’t vote based on gender. They further proved that they don’t cross party lines in order to vote based on gender… otherwise Sarah Palin would be the vice-president.

Doug Grammer July 25, 2010 at 12:42 am

Sen. McCain carried Georgia.

Gerald July 25, 2010 at 11:36 am

Shhhh. He is in dream land. Don’t wake him up.

slyram July 24, 2010 at 6:39 pm

Progressive Dem: you make good points but the DNC, the Democratic Party of Georgia nor Obama himself can smooth out southerners who feel that the person we put in the White House is being blownoff.

The Sherrod situation tells us that we know the South better than the White House. And Herman Cain has been a pastor for years.

demdawg July 24, 2010 at 6:45 pm

I’m sure Barnes was expecting to be in a runoff so he jam packed his schedule between now and Aug 10. Apparently the White House didn’t tell any local Democrats that Obama was coming to town, so Barnes didn’t have a heads up. I don’t blame him for not wanting to change his schedule, especially if Obama didn’t have the decency to let him know he was going to be in ATL.

Gerald July 25, 2010 at 11:50 am

This is wishful thinking by the GOP, and also race-baiting. By bringing this up, you get to both remind white voters that Obama leads the national ticket, and try to get black voters paranoid about their champion getting disrespected; that Barnes is showing Obama less respect than he would a white president.

Sorry, it isn’t going to work. Black voters know that it is the GOP – including Deal – who all of a sudden declares that the FEC rules for determining who was born in this country and who wasn’t aren’t good enough. The GOP never asked for the “long form vault birth certificate” from anyone else, but now all of a sudden it’s a requirement. And black voters also know that the GOP legislature refused to issue a statement honoring Obama, something that they have done for every single president before now, including George W. Bush a few weeks after the Hurricane Katrina mess.

And black voters also know the other side. Black voters know that Bill Clinton came nowhere near the state when Barnes first ran in 1998. They also know that Bill Clinton wasn’t even allowed to campaign for Al Gore in most states in 2000. Even before the Lewinksy scandal, Clinton generally didn’t campaign for candidates in the south and midwest.

Black voters also know that the same applied for George W. Bush. GOP candidates in the northeast and far west did as much as they could to distance themselves from Bush as possible. Many of them tried to associate themselves with McCain, and had him come and campaign for them instead despite the fact that McCain LOST the 2000 nomination big time. Or they would get other RINOs like Rudy Giuliani to come campaign for them. And in the 2008 presidential race, Bush was a forgotten figure who was mostly unmentioned. Even in conservative states, no one stated “we are going to finish what Bush started and finish implementing his vision and agenda!” Bush wasn’t even asked to raise money except in private fundraisers among party loyalists that were closed to the media and kept as secret as possible.

Finally, Obama and Barnes don’t much like each other. Who knows why. It does seem to be personal. But Obama knows that he is going to need a big win in the Georgia governor’s race to offset the bad news elsewhere … losing the House and possibly the Senate. And Barnes knows that he needs Obama’s supporters – who by the way aren’t all black. Blacks are only 25% of the state’s voting population. So whatever it is they have against each other, they are going to ignore it for the sake of mutual expediency. Besides, it isn’t as if Obama doesn’t have plenty of things to keep himself busy to justify staying as far away from Georgia as he can between now and November. There is the oil spill, illegal immigration, the economy, the Iran mess … Obama needs to spend his time in the midwest where his presence isn’t viewed as toxic, and also where people won’t make his comings and goings a race issue because there are so few black voters.

Doug Grammer July 25, 2010 at 1:07 pm

Yes, we all know President Obama should be busy with “the oil spill.”

For a bonus question, please answer the following: Since the oil spill started, President Obama has spent how many days on vacations, fund raisers, campaign trips, and golf trips?

“I won’t rest until this problem is solved,” paraphrased.

Tireless July 25, 2010 at 2:12 pm

I think he’s played 4 or 5 rounds of golf, taken three vacations, flown to at least 15 campaign type events, held a half dozen concerts at the White House ……. this is how BO defines “not resting”.

ACCmoderate July 24, 2010 at 10:46 pm

Icarus,
Your post operates under the assumption that the left-most wing of the Democratic Party in Georgia is as vapidly liberal as the far left movements in California, Massachusetts, or Vermont. At the end of the day we live in Georgia, and that means everything is a tad conservative… including the Democratic Party. The base of the Democratic Party in Georgia is going to be more socially and fiscally conservative than the base of the national party.

Barnes has already shored up a wide-base of Party support, as evidenced by his ability to breeze through the Democratic primary. The ticket is well balanced for success in the fall. Carol Porter is from Dublin (an area in which Roy feels he can make some in roads) and Michael Thurmond is from Athens (a place that can provide him some high Democratic turnout). Thurmond is also African-American. If the prospect of electing Georgia’s first African-American Senator is not enough to turn out black voters… I don’t know what is.

Roy isn’t going to have to worry about holding down the fort in Atlanta. Kasim Reed, John Lewis, Andrew Young and Co. will ensure that there is ample turnout among Atlanta voters. Athens will be another strong spot… especially with local Thurmond on the ballot.

Barnes is doing the smart thing and trying to get new voters. He knows he can’t win with the current Democratic strongholds. That means he’s hitting South GA, an area where he has some fence mending to tend to. It’s also an area where his message of job creation and sensible leadership just might resonate. Folks in Omega aren’t going to care about whether he’s shaking hands with Obama, they’re going to care about how he’s going to help bring jobs to Georgia.

Frankly, I’d be more concerned about party loyalty on the other side of the ballot. A knock-down, drag-out primary followed by what is going to be a bloodbath of a run-off is going to have some (who knows just how many) Handel or Deal supporters sitting on the sidelines out of protest when November rolls around. McBerry’s Kool-Aid drinkers are 100% likely to stay home. Who knows what will become of those die-hard Ox supporters, who probably feel really pissed at both Handel and Deal right now for defeating the chosen one.

Now I don’t think that those jilted Republicans are going to sway the balance in favor of Roy Barnes. But, the runoff is going to cause both Deal and Handel to veer even more right. Now you and I both know that elections are won in the middle… even in a red-state like Georgia. Whoever wins three weeks from now is going to have to work to scramble back towards the middle in order to appeal to the moderate voters that are going to swing this election.

Those moderates lean more right than left, so it won’t be entirely difficult to get on board. Unless Deal changes his campaign focus from gay witch hunts to issues Georgian’s care about, I think he’ll have the toughest time. However, Handel returning to the center after abandoning it earlier in the campaign isn’t going to look too sincere. We all saw what happened to John McCain when he ditched the center to get the nomination then tried to run back to the middle for the general election.

On one side you’ve got a Democratic ticket that could be exciting as these campaigns start to pick up. On the other side, you’ve got a Republican ticket that a lot of GOP voters aren’t to impressed with. I’d worry about Republicans staying home more so than Democrats.

B Balz July 25, 2010 at 8:47 am

For the GOP, the endorsements of Rep. Johnson and/or Mr. Oxendine may help cement the weakest areas both Ms. Handel and Mr. Deal both sorely lack support in – South GA. and the GA Coast.

I wonder if either will offer an endorsement?

Mr. Oxendine would be most likely to make an endorsement, unless the private sector appeals to him. Ox controlled So. Georgia. D’ya see the Ox supporting Karen? I do not. And Ox might get a tasty JOB on Nathan’s team for his efforts.

Moderates in those areas, if they switch over to Team Roy, may make this cycle truly a nail-biter.

As predicted, one of the more interesting election cycles.

Gerald July 25, 2010 at 11:57 am

The only reason why Oxendine “controlled” South Georgia is because he is from there and because Handel was unable to raise money to get on TV down there. Now that she is the frontrunner, that is going to change. And if the ethically challenged Deal cozies up to the ethically challenged Oxendine, that would be a dream come true for a Handel campaign that is running a Sarah Palin – Nikki Haley type “clean up the corruption that the good ole boys have left behind” reform type of campaign. So, Deal and Oxendine may win the areas of the state that they are from, but they would get their clocks cleaned everywhere else.

It is obvious that Handel is the strongest candidate, the one that Democrats fear most. She is conservative enough to mollify the GOP base, and can get plenty of moderate, independent and Democratic votes because she is a woman and because of her representing Fulton County. She is the one candidate in this race that can make her relationship with Fulton County a positive thing. For Barnes it is a negative, and for Deal, the only thing that he can do is the Newt Gingrich-Mitch Skandalakis race-baiting.

Since none of the candidates are good on the pro-life issue, I don’t have a dog in this hunt. But Handel is clearly the most compelling candidate. And I must admit … it would be fun to saddle the anti-affirmative action GOP with a standard-bearer that doesn’t have a college degree. I would personally start calling the Neal Boortz show and the other local right wing radio race baiters whenever he starts bashing “colored folks and their quota jobs” were that to happen.

Tireless July 25, 2010 at 2:25 pm

I am quite certain Barnes fears Deal over Handel. Put Barnes and the GED candidate in a debate and he will make her look like a fool. I think the Palin endorsement helped Handel in the primaries but not in the general. Palin pissed off at least 2/3’s of the GOP by endorsing the most liberal candidate in the primaries.

I am not expecting either Johnson or OX to endorse either candidate. OX is probably on a suicide watch and Johnson says he doesn’t plan to return to politics so why should he waste his time getting dragged into a runoff battle? I know for a fact he’s enjoying his time at home after campaigning 24/7 for the last 18 months. Lastly, if he was going to support a candidate it will NEVER be Handel. Her cheap shots at him and her liberal positions are something EJ can not ignore or endorse…..you can take that to the bank.

ACCmoderate July 25, 2010 at 7:22 pm

If I hear Karen Handel utter the words “good ole boys” one more time I’m going to lose it.

This is the same Karen Handel that was Sonny’s handpicked choice for Secretary of State. She wouldn’t be where she is without Sonny treating her like a good ole boy.

Just cause you wear heels and have a vagina doesn’t make you different Karen. You’re still a good ole boy and you’re still part of the same gaggle of morons that have turned this state backwards

Harry July 25, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Where does that leave Roy B?

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