My Primary Ballot

Who I’m voting for, and some semblance of the reason (if I’ve written about it, there’s a link), FWIW:

PSC: Chuck Eaton

PSC: Stan Wise (I) vs. Pam Davidson? Coin toss – still planning on voting for David Staples in November at this time.

Congress  11th District: It’s irrelevant that Michael Opitz is another Oxendine refugee and William Llop has run such a skeletal campaign that most think his campaign signs are advertising a CPA service.  Congressman Phil Gingrey represents his constituents well and gets my vote now that he’s my Congressman.  I’ve asked family members that remain in the 3rd to continue to vote for Lynn Westmoreland, who also should be re-nominated again tomorrow.

State Rep, 43rd District:  Let’s see here, there’s only one name and it’s that of Rep Sharon Cooper.  I guess those Peach TEA fraudsters were all bluster when they promised she would have opposition for daring to suggest the compromise on the fetal pain bill that is ultimately what it took to get the bill passed.  I’m glad to vote for her, even without any opposition.

Cobb County District Attorney:  The only one of the two candidates I’ve met on the campaign trail was Cindi Yeager. She gets my vote, not so much because of that, but because her youthful and…quirky campaign staffers have provided large quantities of entertainment via Facebook updates during this cycle. 

Cobb Clerk of Court: Rebecca Keaton.  Friends vouch for her.

Chairman, Board of Commissioners: Going to sleep on this one. Tim Lee inherited the County at a time when most shouldn’t have wanted to be a local official.  Pushing a SPLOST and eventually a tax increase may not have been the best decisions, however.  None of those running are likely to want to extend themselves for a “regional” solution should T-SPLOST fail, but Lee may be the best hope for that.  It’ll either be Lee or Mike Boyce as a game time decision.

School Board District 5:  I haven’t lived here long enough to have a clue.  Soliciting input on this race only.  Comment below.

Judge, Superior Court: Reuben Green. He killed the same Saturday morning I did listening to the Senate District 6 debate.  That should get him something.

Judge, Superior Court: Greg Poole – friends say so.

State Court: Larry Burke – Friend says he’s done a good job with traffic court as a substitute judge.

Ballot Questions:

Cobb County Sunday Alcohol Sales: Yes

Gambling “with proceeds going to education”: No.  This isn’t about “real” casinos, folks.

Gift caps: Yes – if you have to ask….

Military Personnel under 21 to Get Carry License: Yes

Should Voters Have To Register By Party: No

Human Life Amendment: Nope, not going to play GRTL’s game of division



  1. Thanks, Charlie! I’m planning on qualifying on Wednesday, time still to be determined.

    I’ll comment on a just a couple of the portions of my ballot tomorrow…
    – I’m leaning towards Boyce for Cobb Chairman. Still undecided.
    – Cobb County Sunday Alcohol Sales – yes… again.
    – Gambling – no, and I’m disappointed in the wording of this question. I guess my gambling will remain outside of the state and sometimes outside of the country. If my wife and daughter weren’t traveling with me on business to Sudbury next week, I’d stop by the Falls Resort and Casino at Niagara on my way up there. May still take them to the harness racing track in Sudbury if infants are allowed in.
    – Gift caps – yes, but zero would be a better cap. I also understand that putting this cap in place also won’t fix the problem as I believe we’ll see more unreported gifts than we already have.
    – Military carry license? Yes.
    – Register by party? No. I’d like to see parties go away altogether and have people run on ideas instead of party label. I think people would actually have to research where candidates stand on issues instead of just voting the party line.
    – Human life amendment: abstaining.
    – T-SPLOST – no. I could possibly be sold on a sales tax to fund some transportation projects, but the product we have before us with the current circumstances isn’t it. The Governor shouldn’t have prevented the fuel taxes from increasing. We need to convert the motor fuels tax completely to a percentage, not per gallon. Transit systems need to go to zone / distance based fares. We have a maglev manufacturer in Cobb County that wants to build a line here that is pretty much being ignored. Plenty of other reasons, but I’ll stop there.

    I think the part I’m most looking forward to is hopefully not having to hear about the T-SPLOST anymore for a while after tomorrow. Everyone right now is so focused on that one main issue when there are plenty of other important races they need to be paying attention to. Like the PSC district 5 race. 😉

          • I swing through there on my way up to Hiawassee when I’m able to make it up there. (My dad’s side of the family has been vacationing in Hiawassee since he was young.) Also used to meet some off-roading friends at Steve Tate at hwy 53 when we used to go explore up towards Amicalola. It’s a pretty area – I love the mountains… I just don’t get up there often enough.

        • mountainpass says:

          I heck I just noticed your name was blue so I clicked through and signed up to receive your emails.

    • Baker says:

      “I think the part I’m most looking forward to is hopefully not having to hear about the T-SPLOST anymore for a while after tomorrow. Everyone right now is so focused on that one main issue when there are plenty of other important races they need to be paying attention to. Like the PSC district 5 race.”

      It is a big shame. All those ethically challenged fellows at the Gold Dome are gonna cruise tomorrow because whatever little attention a July election might get was totally devoted to TSPLOST.

    • Dave Bearse says:

      No other state taxes fuel solely on its value, and most sales don’t tax value at all or tax value value less than Georgia does, because its poor policy. A solely value based tax will amplify retail price swings, and results in revenue gyrations. Fuel should be taxed solely per gallon and not at all on value, and the tax rate have some sort of automatic escalation built in (inflation/construction inflation, combination of inflation and US fleet mpg etc.).

      • Certainly a reasonable argument. I’d say another possibility might be taxing tires as part of the equation since even alternative fueled vehicles use tires, but there are issues there as well – people paying more taxes just for having a flat tire that can’t be fixed, inequality of types of tires (performance tires that wear out quicker vs a harder compound that lasts 75,000 miles), etc. When it comes down to it, there’s just not a perfect solution for funding transportation.

  2. saltycracker says:

    A coin toss between Wise and Davidson who flyers say hasn’t paid her taxes?
    What is going on with that ?
    If she has tax issues she should not even be on the ballot…coin toss !!??

    • mpierce says:

      Tax issues (which she didn’t initially disclose).
      Court documents listed her as having a master’s degree which she doesn’t have.
      Told AJC she has Bachelor’s, but the university lists her as “withdrawn student” with no degree.
      She now says she lacks one course.

      Too many inconsistencies for me. I voted for Wise.

      • Three Jack says:

        Wise = rubber stamp for those he is supposed to regulate.

        Davidson with her apparent faults gets the vote.

          • Bob Loblaw says:

            At least Wise is the devil you know. This woman is blatantly lying about her record in a way where people get fired from their job and here’s Three Jack voting to give her a job. Amazing. Isn’t bad vs. worse–its “what you see is what you get” vs. I will lie to your face. Easy choice, here.

  3. Jane says:

    PSC, vote against the incumbents, not because I want them to lose, but I want them to be more civil with each other.

    Cong 4, Chris Vaughn, at least he is not a Ron Paul nut.
    Gambling, No
    Gift restictions, Yes
    Military carry license, Yes
    Register by Party, No, but I see both sides of the issue
    Human life amendment, Yes
    TSPLOST. No, my guess is that it will lose by more than 10, maybe 20 pts. If the polling is right.

    • Charlie says:

      “PSC, vote against the incumbents, not because I want them to lose, but I want them to be more civil with each other.”

      Translation: Why are all these guys so mean to Tim “shakedown” Echols?

      That may have just swung me over to Wise for this round.

      • saltycracker says:

        Emotionals ok but but not paying taxes gets a pass ?
        You are just messing with Jane, right ?

        • Charlie says:

          I don’t believe Stan can be beaten in this primary. Staples is your only hope if you want a change in this position, but that requires some long odds and heavy lifting in the general.

          To demonstrate weakenss, you would then want Wise to have a rough showing in the primary. That would gain Staples more attention as a viable candidate if it looks like enough Republicans have trouble with this incumbent that they may be able to build a coalition to remove him in the general election.

          • saltycracker says:

            No strategy could bring me to vote for her. I’ve got a more serious problem with Staples….I like him but my Southern stock has increased a lot more than my total annual utility bills this month alone and is still yielding 4%+.
            A vote for Dave might be a financial mistake !!!!! Unless he comes out for clean coal & gas generation. Talk about a dilemma.

            Did some math on the electric cars vs. gas applied to initial cost only -for the difference it’s 13 years (15,000 miles per) of gas at $4 gal to breakeven riding uncomfortably and close to home…..then a solar company will lease you a charger for $100 per month !
            Takes a LOT of disposable income to go green !

            • “Unless he comes out for clean coal & gas generation.”

              If you’d like, feel free to go back and watch the Georgia Interfaith Power and Light forum video again. I’m a free market kind of guy. I think we have to have a good mix of electrical generation sources in our portfolio. I don’t have a problem with clean coal and natural gas so long as the appropriate emissions controls are in place.

              Remember seeing the news stories about Beijing for the 2008 olympics, how they were talking about the horrible air quality there and how people have to wear masks just to walk outside? We certainly don’t want to turn Georgia into that – just think of all those dividend payments going to cover a small fraction of your health care costs instead of being used for whatever else.

              Yes, I’m a big fan of solar, but a realist will recognize that it won’t be our only source of electricity. I do want the markets opened up to allow the third party power purchase agreements which are legal in so many other places.

              While I like the concept of electric cars, they’re certainly not for everyone, nor would they likely work for someone who only has one vehicle if you ever want to drive to the beach. (Unless you live in Savannah… I’m fairly confident you could drive to the beach and back home in an electric car from there.) However, the numbers I’m seeing on the new Tesla S give it a round trip distance of 300 miles and it’s a fairly nice looking car if I do say so myself. I certainly wouldn’t mind having one.


            • …and it also takes a lot of disposable income to buy a Mercedes, BMW, Lexus, Ferrari, Aston Martin, Lamborghini, etc… but people still buy them. 🙂

          • Here’s a comment I wrote on Facebook in a conversation in the Georgians For Constitutional Government group…

            “While I believe I would be the best candidate in the race overall, I’m not in the GOP primary. I know plenty of people don’t like both R candidates for a variety of reasons. When it comes down to it, I think we have to ask who would do a better job? Who would look out for ratepayers instead of being a rubber stamp for Georgia Power? There’s a lot of corruption in the PSC right now and I think it’s time for a change in the district 5 seat. How we come about that change, or if we even make that change, is up to the voters.”

            • saltycracker says:

              That tells me nothing I can get my teeth into. If it is no rubber stamp for GaPwr and no to coal/gas/nuke generation, I’m ok only if we stop all this job seeking effort and push no growth, mother earth concepts. At the same time we do not do enough to protect our waters & state parks.

              It’s a tough assignment to balance financial with environmental responsibilities. I don’t know where the dirty coal vs. clean coal generation value line is but I’d sure like to elect someone who could honestly do that for us.

              Alternative energy – solar, wind – is an important pursuit but it will take years. We cannot pursue industry & jobs (population) growth in the next 5-10 years without efficient power generation in that time frame.

              Nuke is an expensive choice but the others are stonewalled. So where are you on clean coal & gas generation ?

              • See my statement above. I’m a free market kind of guy. Right now we need clean coal, gas and nukes to continue powering what we have. Going forward we have a good opportunity to use solar for peak power generation, but solar doesn’t address base load. All in all, we need a balanced mix in our electrical generation portfolio with a lean towards whichever technology can perform the task cheapest with a minimal impact on the environment.

                Solar is actually ready now. I’ve talked with a few solar people who really want to do business in Georgia, but are basically not allowed to unless they get into selling solar systems and installations to the residential market, which is not part of their business plan. Solar prices have come down to below $3 a watt installed from some of the numbers I’m seeing. If you add tracking systems to increase their performance / capacity, it’s around the $3.50 per watt area for a fairly efficient system as far as solar systems go.

                Keep in mind that part of the natural gas generation is from landfill gas, which is smart. Otherwise it’s just being released into the atmosphere or burned. We should at least turn it into electricity where possible, which is already being done at some landfills.

                • saltycracker says:

                  Feel like I’m debating with one of my good buddies. What you say is fine, it is what you are bobbing and weaving on tells me you have an agenda with unintended consequences.

                  • Calypso says:

                    Or perhaps David is an accomplished fighter and the bobbing and weaving gets him through the 15 rounds until his hand is held aloft by the referee come November.

                    Staples for the win.

                  • I certainly enjoy a good debate / discussion. I think it’s through these types of discussions that people learn from each other. If I’m bobbing and weaving, it’s certainly unintended… perhaps it’s that I’m trying to multitask with a hundred other things at the moment. Lots going on this week. Maybe I can clear it up some.

                    I like solar and am a fan of it as a technology. That doesn’t mean we should subsidize it, any more than we should subsidize any other technology. Let the free market work and the best technology should rise to the top. If it’s solar, great. If it’s some other technology, great. Every type of power generation has it’s pros and cons. There’s really not a perfect solution. But we shouldn’t bar certain types of technologies from the market just because a regulated monopoly exists. Does that help?

            • saltycracker says:

              “so long as the appropriate emissions controls are in place.” Then you go on to talk about Beijing. ??? We certainly don’t want to back up.

              New diesel trucks running through Atlanta today put out cleaner air than they take in. But we want to bring that down some more at a price increase for delivering your goods.

              Just saying we need to work with GaPwr to find that line where we can provide the needs of mass generation. Accept that they will push us around if they can. It takes someone smart enough on where they can realistically perform and then keep the heat on them.

              All you have done is declare them the enemy and you are voice of the people.
              Last time Florida elected that thought, Florida Power cancelled billions in projects and 22,000 jobs. If you want folks to get back to raising there own chickens and using solar, I’m ok with that, we just can’t have it both ways.

              There is a common ground but that is not what politics is all about today.

              • In my mind, the Georgia Public Service Commission is supposed to be neutral. Georgia Power isn’t the enemy, but we also can’t just rubberstamp everything they ask for. It used to be the case that consumers were represented in front of the Public Service Commission by the Consumers Utility Counsel, which was de-funded under Perdue in 2008. In the case of no adequate representation for consumers, the Commissioners should take into consideration the consumer more than they currently do.

                If anything, allowing solar to do business in our state freely should create billions of dollars in projects and jobs just by allowing them to do business. According to a new NREL report, Georgia has a potential for 3,088 GW of solar. Granted, we can’t compare it with nuclear because nuclear is used more for baseload, but just to give you an idea… the new Vogtle reactors 3 and 4 will produce approximately 1.2 GW each.


  4. mpierce says:

    Already voted:
    Chuck Eaton
    Stan Wise – reasoning already mentioned
    Phil Gingrey – I usually agree with his vote
    Cindi Yeager
    John Skelton – knew him at Walton High School, really smart guy who always seemed to have his act together.
    Savage – No way Lee will ever get my vote. I didn’t care for been called a spoiled racist because I don’t support the TSPLOST
    Alcohol YES
    gambling YES
    gift caps YES
    military carry YES
    register by party – NO
    Human life amendment NO
    TSPLOST – NO!!!!

  5. Daddy Got A Gun says:

    Thanks for the “guidance”. I was stuck on who to vote for for Judges and DA.

    Your friends recommendation ended up helping round up 4 more votes for Keaton, Poole, and Burke.

  6. SGa Hick says:

    I’m confused. Why did you leave out CD12? Maria’s from Cobb so won’t you be voting for her?!?!?

  7. Three Jack says:

    PSC – Reid
    PSC – Davidson /// Staples when I can in November no matter who wins the primary.
    11th – Llop (even with the poorly designed signs)
    Comm Chair – Byrne
    TSPLOST – No
    Govt run Gambling – No
    Military carry – Yes
    Sunday sales – Yes
    Personhood/Beckerheads – No
    Faux gift cap – No
    Party register – No — I’m with David on this one, time to move away from party affiliation, vote your principles.
    Judges – Don’t have a clue about who they are despite the massive amount of mail put out by some. Just hope I’m not in front of one anytime soon.

    I look forward to the results tonight when I will be enjoying cocktails at an undisclosed location in Cherokee County where certain races are sure to be close – Rogers / Beach, Jerguson / Turner, Byrd / Caldwell, Dukes / Read, Little / Phelps and maybe even sheriff where Garrison has a formidable if not qualified opponent in David Waters.

  8. terryk88a says:

    Great recap, thanks. I appreciate your analysis of the state-wide GOP issues; I still had to dig in to Fulton County issues, without much difficulty.

    But I’d like to chip in that in this primary, it’s Wise over Eaton for me. Eaton’s past profession as a registered lobbyist for the biomass industry is a giant STOP sign. It’s hard to hold back snarky comments, but disciplined must one be, young Luke.

  9. Bob Loblaw says:

    Charlie–Some very thoughtful consideration you have made in your primary choices.

    Since everyone’s opining here, and Bob Loblaw’s endorsement means so much…

    PSC: Chuck Eaton. An accessible public servant.

    PSC: Stan Wise (I) vs. Pam Davidson? Wise. Davidson? Not so wise. Not very educated, either, despite her claims of myriad degrees hanging on the wall.

    Ballot Questions:

    Gambling “with proceeds going to education”: Yes. We should expand gaming. Charlie: while the only “game” currently proposed is the Video Lottery Terminals idea in Norcross, I believe the question is more general and asking whether or not gaming expansion for purposes of funding education is worthy of a yes or no. I’m voting yes and hoping that the leaders of this state won’t hoodwink its citizens and tourists with a flashy, noise-making equivalent of a scratch-off card. We need destination resort gaming in Georgia!

    Gift caps: Are you nuts? Absolutely not. Are we seriously voting for State Reps today that we trust up until $100 but at $101 become bought off? Please.

    Military Personnel under 21 to Get Carry License: No. I don’t see any rational basis for treating military personnel differently than civilians.

    Should Voters Have To Register By Party: No

    Human Life Amendment: Since a fertilized egg isn’t a life, no. A fertilized egg is frozen in time until it attaches itself to a uterus. Since GRTL has no qualms whatsoever about trampling womens’ healthcare, its easy to understand why they think otherwise. They know less about obstetrics than they do about tact.

    T-SPLOST – An enthusiastic yes for funding projects that would be funded anyway if we had the money. For all you “no” voters who continually questioned the courage of the legislators that put this question on the ballot today, I trust you to line up your legislative coalition to find a new revenue source for funding projects that includes a legislatively-imposed tax increase. Then, I will stand ready to defend these tax-hikers in the face of heavy Republican opposition from all groups “conservative”. Get ready to put your money where your mouth is since you’re not willing to put your money up with today’s vote.

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