Atlanta Press Club Loudermilk-Young Debate Series Begins Today

The Atlanta Press Club will host a series of debates this afternoon and next weekend.  They will air on Georgia Public Broadcasting or you can watch a livestream here.

The schedule is as follows:

At 4:30pm, the first Debate for Public Service Commission will feature Incumbent Chuck Eaton versus challenger and recent Republican convert Matt Reid.  Late word is that Eaton will not participate due to the sudden loss of his Mother on Thursday.

At 5:00pm, Incumbent Stan Wise was scheduled to debate challenger Pam Davidson for the honor of later facing David Staples in the general election for the District 5 PSC seat.  Wise is recovering from a tear to his retina and will not be appearing.

At 5:15pm Incumbent Paul Broun is scheduled to debate challenger Stephen Simpson.  Broun had earlier agreed to two earlier debates with Simpson which have already occurred.  Given the 15 minutes alloted to this debate, it may be safe to presume that Simpson will be the only one to appear.

At 5:30pm, Kent Kingsley and Chip Flanegan will explain why Lynn Westmoreland is a liberal to an empty podium.

At 6:00pm the four candidates who want to take on John Barrow will again attempt to “out-Republican” each other in an effort to turn off swing voters before November’s general election.

Next week, there are debates scheduled for Congressional Districts 7, 11, 4-D, 4-R, and 9 beginning at 4pm.


  1. Charlie says:

    The Atlanta Press Club continues with their tradition of referring to absent candidates as “empty podium”, and keeping a very rigid format as if if the candidate was there.

    To Matt Reid’s credit, he used the opportunity to ask a question to “empty podium” to send condolences to Chuck Eaton and acknowledged the valid reason why he isn’t there.

    If the opponant can validate an absence as “excused”, why can’t APC bring itself to change the format to just give Reid the full time to talk instead of pretending that he’s debating an empty podium? The rigidity of this format just makes everyone participating look stupid.

    It’s going to be a long afternoon based on the number of upcoming no shows.

    • Agreed. I attended the PSC portion in person and it definitely had an odd feeling to it. At least we didn’t have to listen to how Stan sees nothing wrong with accepting gifts and campaign contributions from those he’s regulating. I won’t overly hijack the thread here and take it down a different path, but I’ll just quickly add that while those donations to his campaign may be legal and part of “free speech”, he is also freely able to return those contributions should he recognize the conflict of interest that they are.

    • greencracker says:

      As the junior-most member of the APC debate committee, I fulfilled the freshman duty well of sitting in a chair, keeping my mouth shut and learning and listening.

      So, obviously I don’t have the knowledge to answer this intelligently.

      Anyway …

      One thing I heard re: empty podiums, is that sometime a candidate promises to show and then at the last minute, doesn’t. Or says they won’t come, then at the last minute, does!

      And the studio time has got to be booked way in advance, way before the candidates are even invited. So, sort of one way or the other you have to take up 30 minutes.

      I dunno, maybe “empty podium” is part of Robert’s Debate Rules of Order.

      • greencracker says:

        How about this: excused no-shows get to have an object of their choice put in the podium, like a sunflower oil-powered car or a bald eagle.

        Non-excused no-shows are represented by an object of ther opponent’s choice, which will stand in during questioning.

  2. ricstewart says:

    There was nothing more entertaining than watching Regina Thomas debate an empty podium two years ago when John Barrow showed up. I was part of a live studio audience of four.
    I wonder if Barrow will show up to debate his GOP opponent this year. He ducked out of multiple debates in 2010 for no real reason.

  3. BillyBobTalksPolitics says:

    State Representative Lee Anderson did a great job during the debate in Atlanta today! What’s most refreshing about Lee is that he has a very simple philosophy for answering questions; he keeps it short, sweet, and straight to the point! His answers are clear, concise, and free from ambiguity which is often unheard of from candidates running for office. Great job Mr. Anderson, keep it up!

    • Charlie says:

      He starts every answer with “As I said on my first day…”

      I will agree with you about his “very simple philosophy”, and we’ll emphasize the word simple.

      • BillyBobTalksPolitics says:

        Thank you Charlie! I knew deep down you were an adamant and enthusiastic supporter of Lee Anderson from the beginning. I appreciate your kind words! 😉

    • Tiberius says:


  4. BillyBobTalksPolitics says:

    What I found stunning was the fact that Wright McLeod stated in the debate that he loaned his campaign $100,000 and that he has taken off from work for about six months when he stated in his financial report that he only earns around $50,000 a year from his own law firm. Even more perplexing is the statement McLeod made during an earlier debate that he would be receiving a “pay cut” as a U.S. Congressman –though Congressmen earn about $170,000 a year in office. There is a contradiction here to say the least. Would this be another classic example of Lawyer McLeod “misspeaking” or simply another case of McLeod having difficulty keeping up with the many dishonest statements he has made during the course of his campaign. Just a thought.

  5. BillyBobTalksPolitics says:

    Lee Anderson made a good point during the debate when he said that he is the candidate who has raised more money from supporters within the 12th congressional district than any other candidate. Most notably, Anderson has received far more endorsements from public officials around the state and especially within the 12th district than any other candidate in the race as well. Endorsements that come from current and former chief magistrates, state representatives, state commissioners, county commissioners, businessmen, and various other community leaders. Now, what that tells me is that Anderson must have done a pretty good job during his tenure as a school board member, county commissioner, and state representative. It tells me that he has earned great respect as a public servant, and that he has earned the people’s trust. He’s a good man, and I believe he is worthy of our support on July 31st.

  6. BillyBobTalksPolitics says:

    Another important characteristic of Mr. Lee Anderson is the fact that he has former political experience. I’ve noticed, especially in these debates, that the other three candidates continue to harp on the point that “they” are not “career politicians.” In this sense, they imply that “experience,” especially within the political arena, is somehow a bad thing. Sure, if during your tenure in political office you are found to have accepted bribes from special interest groups or somehow specifically took advantage of your position for personal gain at the expense of your constituents –in those cases “experience” may be a bad thing. I have yet to hear Rick Allen, Wright McLeod, or Maria Sheffield make the argument that Lee Anderson has engaged in any form of political corruption during his time on the local county school board, or commission, or as a state rep. Rather, I hear nothing but good points about Lee’s experience –actually balancing a government budget, actually voting on legislation, writing legislation, passing legislation, you know…doing the work of a public servant. That experience says volumes more than anything the other candidates have done in regard to politics.

    Sure…McLeod, Allen, Sheffield, they all talk a good game. But, do they have a transparent voting record that voters can refer to in order to validate their trust in them like with Lee Anderson? The answer of course is…nope. However, I certainly believe that Allen’s business record deserves respect, as well as McLeod’s service in the Navy, and Sheffield’s educational background. But, none of those candidates have any first-hand experience serving in the public limelight—Anderson in fact has. None of the other candidates have any first-hand experience actually dealing with the consequences of making decisions within the political arena—Anderson in fact has. None of the other candidates have any first-hand experience actually working, negotiating, and creating diplomatic solutions with other public officials—and yet Anderson in fact has. You get the point.

    So, I think considering that Anderson has a proven conservative record that validates his candidacy as a Republican, he’s the best candidate that we can trust to do the job in Washington. We have no idea what exactly McLeod is going to do (especially when he has voted in every democratic primary since the late 1980s.) We have no idea what Rick Allen is going to do (he has no public voting record to speak of). That same statement can be made of Sheffield.

    Folks, this is the most important election year probably in our lifetime. With that said, I don’t think we can afford to gamble with our votes and choose someone with no prior experience, no public record, and no actions to back up his/her rhetoric. Anderson is not just talk…he HAS walked the walk. We know based on his actions, that we can in fact trust Lee Anderson. Trust is essential. Character is essential. Lee Anderson has a record that proves he has both. I don’t know about ya’ll, but these points tell me that Anderson is the best man for the job. And the best part about voting for Lee is that you won’t feel like you are taking a huge chance with your liberty.

    Just a few more thoughts…I couldn’t resist. That debate got me all inspired! 🙂


  7. irishfarmer says:


    I agree with ya 100%. Again tonights debate showed who should be the Republican to take out not just take on John Barrow. Lee Anderson is a fine person and in every elected position he has had he has done a great job. That is fact and cant be argued.

    Another fact is this and is simple. Apoll was done by someone before this debate and shows numbers that they dont like. That is why Allen and McLeod came after Lee Anderson right out of the gate in the debate tonight. Anderson stood strong and showed why he should win on July 31st and why he should be this districts next congressman period!

  8. Calypso says:

    If Anderson does make it through the primary, BillyBobTalksPolitics is going to need to be put on suicide watch.

      • Calypso says:

        Sorry, I meant “If Anderson doesn’t make it through the primary…”

        Dang, missing modify button.

        Charlie, will we ever get our FSM-given right to have a ‘Modify’ and ‘Delete’ feature again?

        • not an oil man says:

          Calypso you may be right about Billy Bob being on suicide watch, but one thing is for sure, he’ll be out of a job.

  9. ricstewart says:

    I know I shouldn’t feed the trolls, but I do have an honest question after watching the GA-12 debate.
    Lee Anderson’s exact quote on the lobbyist gift cap:

    “I never did sign it in the first place. I said I support it, and I still support it.” He goes on to explain that the reason it didn’t move forward is because it didn’t have enough support and enough cosponsors: “…You’ve got to have enough elected officials to get the job done, and we didn’t have the numbers.”

    So if he supported it, why didn’t he sign it?
    If he wanted it to move forward and the lack of cosponsors was stopping it from moving forward, why didn’t he become a cosponsor?

Comments are closed.