On Billboards And Change

Two Republican candidates remain in the 7th Congressional District Race to replace John Linder: former minister and talk show host Jody Hice and former Linder Chief of Staff Rob Woodall. The winner will face Democrat Doug Heckman in November. Jody Hice gained a lot of free media over billboards he placed throughout the district asking: “Had Enough Of Obama’s Change?” The controversial aspect of the billboard was the “c” in “change” was replaced with a Soviet-era hammer and sickle.

Tim Bryant of WGUA in Athens interviewed both Hice and Woodall this week and the subject of the billboard came up. As you might imagine Hice and Woodall disagree about the appropriateness of the hammer and sickle (quote via the Political Insider).


“I make no bones about it. I respect the office of the president, but I make no bones about it – I do not respect the policies of this president, which are socialistic.

“We are watching this administration take over the health care industry, the banking industry, the student loan industry, the insurance industry, automobile — one part of the private sector after another.”


“It’s one of those sad things that happen when folks start to believe the end justifies the means.

7th District GOP candidate Rob Woodall

“I know that Jody’s a good man. I know his heart’s in the right place. And kicking sand like that is exactly the way to get elected in a Republican primary. I’m sure he had someone give him some very good advice….

“But the truth is that’s not how you get good policy passed in Washington. Kicking sand only gets you through the primary.
It doesn’t help you implement good policy for the country.

“So do I think that was a clever electoral ploy? Absolutely. I think he got out of it exactly what he wanted to get out of it. Do I think that’s going to hurt him, in terms of being taken seriously in the halls of Congress? Absolutely, I do.”

You can listen to both interviews here. Jody Hice on 7/29, and Rob Woodall on 7/29


  1. ACCmoderate says:

    I thoroughly agree with Woodall on this one.

    Hice has opinions on the direction that Obama is taking the country. He’s entitled to them. However, that kind of rhetoric won’t help him when it comes to actually representing his constituents.

    For a perfect example, take a gander down 316 to Paul Broun Jr. His statements calling Obama a Nazi/Socialist/Communist have scored him points with his conservative base, but inside the halls of Congress he’s completely ineffective and fellow members go out of their way to avoid him.

    Is he really good at getting elected? Yes. Is he good at representing his district and advocating for their needs? Hell no.

    Electing Hice would be tantamount to electing another Paul Broun Jr. GA-7 would be getting another Congressman more likely to make the Daily Show than achieve anything positive for his district.

    • Fred Smulavich says:

      Wow. When ACC Moderate agrees with you, something has gone horribly awry for a Republican primary bid. That whole “moderate” thing has a whole different meaning up in the People’s Republic of Athens.

      Woodall needs to stop playing the DC game and go back to pretending like he can relate to the conservatives in CD 7… Otherwise he’s in for a sad surprise on August 10th regardless of how much free air time Boortz gives him.

  2. biagio bruno says:

    advocating for their needs? You just made Paul Broun look like the kind of congressman I want. I don’t think Broun gives a hoot about the daily show or the cocktail circuit or what the guys in sharp suits think about him.

    By the way has Woodall ever had a real job in the private sector? Or has he always been advocating for their needs?

  3. debbie0040 says:

    We need Congressmen that don’t go to D.C to go along to get along or to try to bring home as much bacon or pork they can for their district. That mindset when the GOP was in charge is what help put the Dems in power. We need people that will challenge the status quo. I have major issues with Woodall’s statements..

    I think Paul Broun is a great Congressman. Tom Price has been effective and he has challenged the status quo and is not afraid to anger the left.
    If I was an average voter and did not know about both candidates, based on those statements alone, I would vote for Hice…

      • debbie0040 says:

        amor patriae, I can see you are still throwing a temper tantrum because you did not receive the endorsement you begged for. As an attorney, you should know the legal ramifications of making untrue, slanderous comments like you just made and others that you have made in the past. As someone that works for the government, you need to be careful as it reflects badly on your employer that you make such statements that have been proven false. In your line of work, your credibilty is important and you should guard it . Your opponents in court could use your slanderous, untrue comments against you to undermine your credibility and hence win cases for their clients.

        • amor patriae says:


          First of all, just checked my C.V. and, sure enough, no law degree. Never practiced law anywhere, and I certainly have never worked for the government. Haven’t even been particularly involved in politics until I woke up recently. Don’t know who you think you’re talking to, but you’re way off base.

          As to my comments being slanderous and untrue, what exactly did I say that was slanderous? I asked a simple question. Your over the top response gives me further pause… doth the lady protest too much?

          I believe that the Tea Party is being marginalized because of the questionable judgment and ill-conceived actions of people like you — those who take what little influence they may have and delude themselves that they are kingmakers. The liberal media and other liberal political groups now have all the ammunition they will ever need to bury what started as a very good idea and a movement that I (and many others) once hoped would have real momentum and influence across this country.

          I would respectfully suggest that, rather than slinging barbs at whoever you think I am, you take care not to further damage your own credibility and that of the Tea Party. Otherwise, you are in very real danger of “letting your alligator mouth overload your hummingbird a**” (as my daddy used to say).

          • sethweathers says:

            Why not just say who you are and avoid all of this?

            I’ve always used my real name when making posts. Unless you are trying to make some sort of sensitive revelation about something that would be harmful to make using your real name, why are people so afraid to use their real names for general political conversations?

            • Lady Thinker says:

              For some of us, our job contracts forbid it if our private lives does anything that could affect our professional lives. Some jobs, mine included, seriously discourage us from making political statements. Another reason in my case, is one of the presidents is a heavy Deal supporter and I am a heavy Karen supporter.

          • PatriotPat says:

            amor patriae,

            You have made some interesting comments and also thrown a few “barbs” of your own. I just have a few questions for you of my own. 1) What do you know of Tea Parties? Have you ever been a member? To what extent in the Grassroots Movement have you been involved? Have you ever help to organize a rally? Have or do you study true history concerning the Founding Fathers and Framers?


            2) Are you a Leftist Socialist trying to spread angst and doubt and cast aspersions towards those of the Tea Party Movement in order to give the (false) appearance that the Movement is disintegrating? Are you attempting to destroy a Movement which only seeks to expose the corruption and evil of main stream D.C. with the light of the Gospel and True or pure History as opposed to revisionist history which is so twisted and distorted the Founding Fathers themselves would not be able to recognize it?

            3) How do you know Debbie is a part of the Tea Party Movement? I have not seen in the above comments any mention by Debbie of the Tea Party so, are you making an erroneous assumption [you know what that means] and then an astronomical leap to connect the two? How do you know???

            Now as far as the billboards go, the truth hurts. Jody Hice is merely telling the truth where as Rob Woodall and many other D.C. established Polished Politicians cower at the truth. They can only dance around it. Fearing they might offend someone and lose votes. What this country is crying for and Washington needs is a heaping dose of truth to expose the garbage (including the flowery lips of such as Woodall) and them to the curb – done, forever!!! Wake up before you convince yourself that your dream is real.

            Why doth the heathen rage?

            • amor patriae says:

              Patriot Pat,

              Rather than engage in a rapidly devolving game of who can make the sharpest personal attack, I’ll respond to your questions about my pedigree:

              1. I have attended a number of Tea Party meetings in the 7th District. And while I FULLY support the efforts of their leaders to engage other citizens in the movement to return our country to its Constitutional foundation, the tone and tenor of at least one local meeting has been far too reminiscent of the many bible-thumping revival meetings I attended as a child. While I am a proud Christian and seek to live my faith on a daily basis, I do not believe that one must be an evangelist of “the light of the Gospel” in order to be counted as a true Conservative American.

              I have always believed that the only way to effect real change is to be involved, and that is how I live my life – personally involved in those activities and areas where I hope to effect change. I have organized political rallies (albeit not a Tea Party rally), although I’m not sure why you consider that an important factor. Like many others, I carry a copy of the Constitution with me and yes, I have read it. And yes, I have studied history and the Founding Fathers. I find the lifelong political discourse between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson fascinating.

              2. No.

              3. debbie0040 has, in previous posts, made her role in the Atlanta Tea Party clear. You should do your research.

              We can (and do) disagree on who is the best candidate to represent the interests of the 7th District in Washington. The wonderful thing is that we can vote our convictions on August 10th.

              Oh — and to Seth Weathers regarding why I use a pseudonym? Simple pragmatism. I want to express my opinions freely, but I must consider the unintended consequences such an expression may have on my spouse and children and (to a lesser extent) on my livelihood. There are a lot of nasty people out there.

  4. Chris says:

    Those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it.

    The Hammer and Sickle are symbols of the Communist Party, not Socialism. Socialism involves massive state control of industry, but permits private property. Communism is much more extreme, and prohibits nearly all private property.

    By invoking the symbols of an ideology that has killed upwards of a two to three hundred million people in the last 100 years, Hice has invoked Godwin’s law, and should not be taken at all seriously in politics.

    Sadly, his only serious competition was a DC insider who’se enriched himself suckling at the K-Street trough, and an Atlanta Insider who has enriched himself at the Gold Dome trough.

    Personally, I’m glad to be represented by David Scott.

    • “””Communism is much more extreme, and prohibits nearly all private property.””””

      Now I know why all there are tons of really nice apartment buildings going up all over Macon…. I also found out they were mostly empty and now have been turned over to Section 8 public housing…

      The policiies of this administration and congress are moving us in that direction, European Socialism yes, Communism a long leap but watching this bunch wouldn’t have to leap that far.

      • B Balz says:

        Many apartment buildings and the whole ‘affordable housing’ AKA Section 8 Program is a huge scam. The same folks you see in Church, Rotary (Any other service org.) or the TOP pillars in any community are willing selling out.

    • Jimbo says:

      Socialism and Communism ARE THE SAME THING. Read chapter 3 of “Planned Chaos” by Ludwig von Mises. If you don’t feel like reading the whole chapter, focus on paragraphs 1,2, 12-22, 29, and 32-34.
      The only difference between socialism and communism is not in ideology, but in tactics. Communists want to achieve socialism through violence. The Socialists are more patient and willing to wait to become an elected majority. But the goals of both groups are the same: SOCIALISM. The terms socialism and communism were used interchangeably until 1917, when Lenin used the term communist to differentiate himself from the other parliamentarian European socialists.
      Those who are ignorant of the fact that socialism and communism are the same are doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past.
      And Chris, there is no such thing as private property under socialism. The government may permit you to “own” a small plot of land for yourself, but they can take it away from you anytime that they want.

    • Lady Thinker says:

      Personally, I’d like to be represented by Austin Scott, but my vote will go to Woodall.

  5. GaConservative23 says:

    Maybe Hice really does believe in the billboard, but it’s obvious its real intention was to garner attention, which it did.

    I have to agree with Woodall on this one. The billboard has gotten Jody plenty of media attention and riled up a lot of his base, but it also reeks of desperation.

    I really do hate that Rob has been in DC for upwards of 15 years, but I also think he has a much better chance than Hice of getting any legislation passed, should he win.

    • Fred Smulavich says:

      You think? All he talks about is the FairTax, yet with over a decade in the works with the COMBINED efforts of him and Linder there are only 62 cosponsors… Does that look like someone that can pass meaningful legislation to you?

      • GaConservative23 says:

        He talks a lot about the FairTax because that’s what Georgia Republican primary voters want (for the most part). Sure, it’s pandering. He knows just as well as you the unlikelihood of its passage, but he will continue to push for it. At the very least it gets a conversation started about tax reform.

        I know in a time of anti-incumbency this isn’t the best trait to have, but Rob does have working relationships with the other House Republicans. So he would be in an interesting position as a freshman Congressman who already has connections, which would put him in a good position for some leadership roles, especially if Republicans take back the House.

        Contrast that with Hice, who other members of his Party would probably avoid like the plague.

    • sethweathers says:

      The “career politician” thing is really starting to crack me up.

      People are getting too caught up in it. FYI, Rob wasn’t even in elected office. He had a job that was responsible for working with the people of the 7th District.

      Ronald Reagan was a “career politician” – he was in office 16 years and spent another 4 years hosting a political radio show.

      Thomas Jefferson spent 36 YEARS in office.

      Benjamin Franklin spent 12 years in one office or another.

      John Adams spent 17 years

      James Madison 24 years

      There are GOOD politicians and BAD politicians. Using the number of years that someone is in office as reason to remove them is a weak argument and often times counter-productive.

      (i’m sure i’m a year or two off on some of these guys, but you should get the general idea though)

  6. rightofcenter says:

    The communist innuendo may be fine for a talk show host or blogger, but it is disgraceful for a candidate who wants to be taken seriously for federal office. It paints you as a nut-job, out of the Larry McDonald mold of legislator.

  7. Goldwater Conservative says:

    Isn’t anybody else concerned that voters fall for this crap?

    I think so.

    So few people are educated in diverse ideological matters that it has become too easy to draw false parallels between any politician and the Nazi Party, communists, socialists, Maoists, etc. I doubt Hice even knows what socialism is.

    What else can Georgia do to embarrass itself on the national stage? How about propose to secede from the Union?…Oh wait, too late. How about raising spending and not raising taxes? Or passing legislation about the prohibition of surgical implantation of micro-chips? Whats next? A diplomatic resolution proposal that the state of Georgia will present to extra-terrestrial aliens should they land in our state?

  8. Tea Party Man says:

    Rob Woodall will not sign the Tea Parties Contract From America. He would not sign the Atlanta Tea Party Patriots pledge, he is not opposed to earmarks. He is just another career professional politician.

    • sethweathers says:

      If Hice is elected, I’m looking forward to seeing how he will get funding for Lake Lanier or any federal hwy expansions (now that he’s excluded himself from being able to do that)

      • Lady Thinker says:

        I called the Gwinnett County main voting line to find out which precincts will be open for early and they said only the main one to the east of Lawrenceville. Do you think if more precincts were open for the run-offs that more people would show up?

        It seems to me that there should be four, a north, south, east, west, and maybe a fifth, center precinct open for voters. What do you think Seth?

      • Fred Smulavich says:

        So please be clear with me here: Woodall is definitely supportive of earmarks? That’s what your statement seems to indicate…

        • sethweathers says:

          You will have to find out from Woodall exactly his thoughts on it – I’m just making a personal observation about not being able to fund the mentioned items without earmarks.

        • debbie0040 says:

          congressman Tom Price has not requested an earmark in 4 years. Many members of the Republican Study Committee signed apledge not to ask for earmarks. Earmarks and the GOP’s use of them when they were in power got them in serious trouble with the voters. I was told by a Congressional staffer that had it not been for earmarks, ObamaCare would not have passed. It has to stop.

          I spoke to Mr. Woodall and he was supportive of not doing away with earmarks and would not sign the Atlanta Tea Party pledge. Atlanta Tea Party could not support a candidate that supports earmarks.

          • polisavvy says:

            debbie, I agree with you. Congress needs to be on a “pork free diet” for a while. It’s not just the Republicans who need it, but the Democrats as well. Both parties are guilty of this practice.

          • c_murrayiii says:

            If you do away with earmarks, which are different than non-germane pork spending, then a bureaucrat in DC gets to decide how Federal Transpo and Water dollars are spent. An earmark like the kind Mr. Woodall supports, and like the kind most Congressman and congressional candidates will use (regardless of what silly pledge they sign) directs specific funding to a specific project, one that is more times than not necessary and critical to a district. Gwinnett and the 7th as a whole contributes a large sum to the Fed Transpo budget from our gas taxes, and who better to know what transpo projects our district needs than the congressman/woman representing us. Likewise for water projects like Lake Lanier. Its not pork, its not “part of whats wrong with Washington”, actually its what the founders intended when they created representatives.

            • polisavvy says:

              I understand the importance of earmarks; but, until the economy is sound, perhaps neither party should spend one penny more than is absolutely necessary. It’s not our future I worry about as much as our children and their children. I also realize that there is a difference between earmarks and pork. I just think spending, unless absolutely necessary, should be cut PERIOD. Perhaps I worded it incorrectly and warranted your response. If so, I apologize. I guess I just don’t want to see any further funding for “bridges to nowhere” until we can sustain it.

              • sethweathers says:

                @polisavvy – I understand your fear of anymore “bridges to nowhere” – we have to elect someone who will not abuse it just as we have to trust the person we elect on a million other things. I think Chase M just did I great job of explaining it.

                I know Rob personally – he is the most cost conscience person I’ve ever met – to the point we give him a hard time about it. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to get him to even accept a bottle of water because he’s on the lifetime free refills at QuikTrip 🙂 My wife and I think its great – imagine having a Congressman like that? If there is anybody I will never worry about when it comes to pork spending, it’s Rob 🙂

            • debbie0040 says:

              All congressmen think their earmarks are important to their district and are good. We either stop the earmark practice or we continue to allow the system be abused by earmarks. It has to stop sometime and we need congressmen that will oppose all of them…

  9. Tea Party Man says:

    Woodall is not married and does not have a girl friend. Men are not going to go without sex. Some Hot lobbyist is going to rub up against him and the taxpayers will end up paying $1,000 each for horse turds.

    • polisavvy says:

      Funny post! I think that my eyeballs are now permanently scarred from the visual that popped into my head. 🙂

    • Lady Thinker says:

      And you know this personal information about him how? You are accusing him of corruption before he is even elected. Are you one of the people who lost in CD-7?

    • debbie0040 says:

      I do belive Mr. Woodall to be an honorable candidate. I disagree with him on policy issues. Let’s not start this type of campaign..It is beneath the dignity of both candidates to engage in this type of rhetoric. We need to stay focused on issues.

    • Icarus says:

      @ Tea Party Man.

      I would doubt the need to address the first sentence, but as it appears to be factual information, I guess it could be considered fair game but I don’t see relevence to the discussion.

      The second sentence is a bit odd, but whatever.

      The third sentence, and ultimately your point, is pure conjecture. Mr. Woodall is COS to a current congressman, and has been for years. As such, am sure he would have had the same tempations that you’re trying to pin him with for some time. And the fact that he’s single is irrelevent to that, as we’ve seen by lots and lots and lots of our members of the State legislature.

      As such, your comment appears to do nothing but attempt to create an impression that someone “might” do something you find illegal or immoral, without offering any context from his current or past actions as to why he may do this.

      Not only does your logic fail, but if you attempt a smear of this nature again, your future comments will be directed to our spam filter.

      • polisavvy says:

        Just so you know, I was not thinking that what he said about Mr. Woodall was humorous. I was having a visual of a cartoon character and eyes popping out of the head. With the creative way that people word things on here you can’t help but have visuals dance in your head (at least I do).

    • Fred Smulavich says:

      Seriously, PLEASE don’t go there. It’s just classless. I support Hice too, and I can’t imagine he would, under any circumstances, want his supporters to engage in this kind of conversation.

    • ACCmoderate says:

      TPM if you want to go there, I can associate Jody Hice with fellow preachers like Ted Haggard.

      See why making false and baseless accusations isn’t a fruitful activity?

  10. sethweathers says:

    @Tea Party Man – I rarely get into conversations like this, but I have to ask: Do you feel like you are having an intelligent conversation about the issues, based on facts, when you throw out baseless personal attacks against someone that you do not even know? If someone made a BS comment like the one you just made about one of your family members would you think the same way about it?

    You will never accomplish anything by picking fights hiding behind a screen name trying to drag others down to the same level because life didn’t work out for you the way you had planned. I’m sorry if that is the case – it doesn’t have to be – join the conversation about issues with the rest of us.

    I hope everyone joins me in discussing issues and discourage this type of behavior. Remember, we are talking about real people here – not someone on a postcard. I have no problem calling someone out on their wrongs, but keep it that way.

    You owe Rob Woodall an apology.

  11. MD JD says:

    Regarding the billboard controversy: Symbols, like words, are used rhetorically to bring to mind certain concepts which they “re-present.” The hammer and sickle brings to my mind the decades-long misery of the soviet people under a system of government that promoted collectivism versus private enterprise, suppression of religion in favor of secularized atheism, a “right to health care … ensured by free, qualified medical care provided by state health institutions” [Art. 42 Soviet Const.], a restructuring of economy by Bolshevik decree, and a state-mandated socialism — which was not a “government of people, but an administration of things” [Frederick Engels]. I have no problem associating all of these things with the hammer and sickle — and with the practices and political philosophy of the current administration.

    Was the Boston Tea Party an “attempt to garner attention”? You bet it was! And the present day Tea Party needs all the attention it can garner — from the silent majority voters who see the noxious direction in which our government is headed. Will some be “offended”? Yep. The thin-skinned and those whose dislike all things controversial will rail when painful truths are re-presented. But our well-being now depends, as never before, upon political truth being articulated and impressed on voters’ thoughts — by speech, action, drama, melodrama, or whatever other lawful means exist.

    Jody Hice is a man committed to the founding principles of this country. Far from being a “wing-nut,” his political principles are in full accord with the traditions on which our nation was built. I’ve known Jody now for many years, and I know him to be a man of integrity, character, principle, and great resolve — not a zealot or fanatic.

    There are those in society, and even among conservatives, who fear the voice of religion from whatever quarter it speaks. To them, I say, “Fear not, for I bring you good tidings of great joy.” Jody Hice is not a man who seeks to foist his religion on an unwilling populace. Yes, he believes and is a man of faith. But his political goals are freedom of religion … and freedom of speech. He has proved that time and again — by his courage in the pulpit and courage on the campaign trail.

    “I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.” [Barry Goldwater]

    I’m with Jody.

  12. c_murrayiii says:

    I don’t know Jody Hice, he’s probably a good guy. I do know Rob. I’ve lived my whole life in Gwinnett county (minus a short stint in the military.) No place will ever be home to me other than Dacula, GA. I have the fullest confidence that Rob will be a great representative of my hometown and my home county. I know he is not in this for himself, despite what some folks may think. I know he will always think of the people of the 7th before he makes any decisions or casts any votes. He’ll also stand for our Constitution. And you’ll never have to worry about Rob getting into any dirty political games in DC. He’s all around a good guy. Thats my two cents, take it for what you want.

  13. debbie0040 says:

    We need warriors in d.c. now. Congressmen that are not afraid to make the left made.

    The personal attacks from both sides need to stop and we need to focus on the issues..

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