Author: GAWire

Al Gore: Not Just a Moron

This isn’t GA politics, but since some of us were discussing “our favorite Oscar winner” earlier, I couldn’t help but post this from John Fund’s piece in today’s Opinion Journal Political Diary (WSJ).   

… Then it was revealed that Mr. Gore’s sprawling mansion in Nashville was consuming 20 times the power of a typical American household, and that its consumption had actually increased since the release of the Gore film, in which the former vice president can be seen telling audiences they should curb their use of electric power.

The Tennessee Center for Policy Research obtained public records that showed Mr. Gore’s mansion in the tony Belle Meade neighborhood has been consuming a monthly average of 18,414 kilowatt-hours, nearly twice what the average American home consumes in an entire year. His electric bill averaged $1359 a month in 2006 and his gas bill was $536. His heated pool house alone consumed more natural gas than his entire main living quarters.

The comment from Al’s people, according to Fund’s piece:

Mr. Gore’s office responded with a lame statement claiming that his energy consumption was appropriate because he obtained all of it from a local “powerswitch” program that used 100% renewable fuels, whatever that means.

Gore isn’t just a crazed moron who doesn’t have a clue what he’s talking about anymore.  He can definitely add hypocrite to his bio!  

What happened to all the fun?

What happened to making fun of State Capitol Interns on the front page?  I’ll get it rolling again …

When I was down at the Capitol last week, I saw our favorite intern, and no, he wasn’t in the Rotunda, but it did appear he was thinking hard about something.  I’m sure what was on his mind had something to do with writing complex policy (or something like that).

(P.S. Thanks, Daniel, for being a fun sport as we rag on the interns.  It’s all a part of the process.  It also could be that making fun of other people in lower positions compensates for a lack of my own self-esteem … but I doubt that’s it.)

Moving on …

Okay, first, let me say that I purposefully stayed away from everything yesterday.  I was not feeling great going into the night, and I only became more depressed as the night went on.  I just gradually went into a fetal position thinking about the words:  “Speaker Pelosi.”

So, I’ll give you that one, Dems.  You got her.  You got the war to deal with.  You got healthcare to take care of.  You got Social Security to reform.  You got taxes to fix (or raise in your case).  You have national security to address.  You have an immigration crisis to solve.  Now, let’s see you do something with it.

Moving on, I have to disagree with Buzz on one minor detail.  Yesterday was not really bittersweet in my opinion.  It was just bitter.  We knew we would kill the Dems in Georgia.  No big surprise there.  I never had a lot of hope for GA 8 & 12 (although I thought Max was going to pull it out there for a while).  I do agree, though, that these seats will contiously grow more difficult for Marshall and Barrow, and it is almost inevitable that they will go R in the near future.

Finally, the one thing that has made me smile is Erick’s post about Insider Advantage.  I’m glad to know that everyone else will realize how rediculous Matt Towery is.  What a tool.

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More Good News for GOP in GA

The timing of John Kerry’s latest flop and the President speaking about it in Georgia will be good for both Mac and Max.  GWB is giving his response on the situation to one of the most conservative strongholds in the country. 

Even though the Dems in these areas might be more conservative than Kerry, it’s guilt by Party association with something like this, while giving plenty of earned media to the GOP canndidate.

Qualitative Analysis on the Gov Race

Rarely anymore do I conduct political research (just not enough profit margins), but in light of my negative sentiments towards campaigning in Georgia, I decided to do a limited qualitative research study on media in the gubernatorial race.

I conducted a small focus group with a targeted sample of men and women, over 55 years old, likely voters consisting of GOP and Democratic supporters.

The subject was an analysis of two primary media spots:  Sonny’s ad with Mary Perdue talking about being married to the Governor; and, Taylors second spot blasting Sonny on the real estate deal.

These were my observations:

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Got me thinkin’ …

Erick’s earlier post about branding in politics got me thinking about something that we have touched on before here in the “political pickin’s from the Peach State,” as they say.

Branding is probably one of the most basic, yet most important strategy for any organization, whether Fortune 100 or political campaign.  However, the majority of political marketers have failed to really embrace this seriously. 

Now, we all know what the BC’04 branding looked like still to this day, and some of us even remember Dole/Kemp, Bush/Quayle, Reagan/Bush, and so on, as well as Kerry/Edwards. 

But, in thinking about political strategy in general, how do we identify what day(s) of class that most political consultants/operatives/staffers actually missed?  That’s easy … they missed all of the important ones, and instead focused most of their time at CR mixers, writing papers on Leviathan and volunteering on meaningless campaigns.

Instead, they should have been learning how to read financial statements for various types of organizations, understanding the ins and outs of quantitative and qualitative research and getting a strong grasp on the difference between literary writing and persuasive language.  Further, they should also have been attempting to understanding macro and micro economics better, so that they could really interpret and understand the market’s influence on politics/policy.  Instead, we have a legislative branch of government made up of 23 yr old staffers making a salary below the poverty line, most of whom couldn’t tell me the difference between a mutual fund and hedge fund. 

This leads me to a discussion that many folks at the crossroads of business, law and politics have had for a while now … what is the best background/training for political/policy staffers?  Should there be required training for political operatives that is more legal based or business/market based? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each?  Should there even perhaps be a licensing (sp?) requirement for political consultants and lobbyists? 

Further, why haven’t campaigns implemented more strategies, tools, and processes that the marketplace has been profiting from for years?!?  Accenture was able to bill $15.55 billion in revenue in 2005 because they hire skilled people to implement the most advanced strategies for clients; however, statewide candidates are hiring fresh-out-of-the-College-Republicans managers that can’t tell polling data from a financial statement.  Now granted, campaigns must be conservative on expenses, but even most of the higher paid consultants’ experience is relatively limited. 

What would happen if political operatives used some of the tools that business and market strategists use to gain a competitive edge against their opponents and draw more voters to turnout on Election Day?

What’s on your Sonny Do list?

“Well, first and foremost, get a new media consultant.”  At least, that’s what I’d be saying if I were Nick Ayers, or whoever is running Sonny’s operation.

First, let me say that I apologize for my unoffical sebatical from Peach Pundit.  All that work I missed during the Primary caught up with me, and I found the need to spend some time on revenue generating work, not to mention traveling out of the country, etc. 

Next, I can already tell that I’m going to get a lot of flack from criticizing Sonny’s media spots, but I don’t care.  Why?  Well, mainly because I know Sonny is going to win in November, so this is really all moot.  Primarily, though, I just wanted to throw this out there, because it has been bothering me, as I have been watching ad after ad come out from the Perdue Campaign.

So, my analysis on Sonny’s media …

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Johnson Raking in Pro-Israel Funding

The Hill is reporting on the fact that Hank Johnson is tapping pro-Israel funding for the run-off. 

McKinney, I’m sure, is having a serious case of deja-vu, along with a pretty bad headache, as well.

Georgia Rep. Cynthia McKinney’s primary run-off opponent has tapped into the pro-Israel fundraising network that helped her virtually unknown challenger Denise Majette topple McKinney and Artur Davis beat then-Rep. Earl Hilliard (D-Ala.) in a pair of hotly contested 2002 primaries in black-majority districts.

Hank Johnson collected at least $34,100 on Tuesday from individuals and political action committees (PACs) that supported Majette, Davis or both, including several pro-Israel PACs. Overall, Johnson reported receiving $63,100 on Tuesday.

Read the full article here.

The Hill’s 50 Most Beautiful People

What does The Hill’s “50 Most Beautiful People of Capitol Hill” contest have to do with Georgia politics?  Absolutely nothing.

However, it does illustrate just how small and ineffective Washington, D.C. can often be. 

After reading about so many 22-yr-olds claiming they “like to play softball in the Mall” and “are looking to meet their mate at an Adams Morgan bar,” I once again understand how 535 offices on the Hill can manage to get absolutely no meaningful business done.

At least we now know how many times some no-name Member’s press secretary changes her hair color, though.  Am I being too cynical?

McKinney’s Historical Trends

CQ Politics provides this analysis on Cynthia McKinney’s historical showings in runoffs. 

Six-term Democratic Rep. Cynthia A. McKinney may be able to round up the votes she needs to win her Aug. 8 runoff in Georgia’s 4th District — and avoid being ousted from Congress by Democratic primary voters for the second time in her stormy career.

But history does not appear to be on McKinney’s side, according to extensive research on runoff elections that just happens to have been conducted by one of the state’s leading political scientists, Charles S. Bullock III of the University of Georgia.

Read the rest of the story here

It’s amazing how such a horrible candidate/elected official can rally Republicans and Democrats alike around an alternative candidate, who happens to be a Democrat. 

I have resolved to the fact that McKinney and her 4th District is a political phenomenon that is just unexplainable with conventional political science.  I admittedly do not understand the voters in that district; however, I am convinced that there are plenty of people that could/would vote her out, if only they would show up to actually vote. 

Further, I am convinced that the people that vote for her simply do not have the mental capacity to understand just how rediculous she is. 

If she wins, they deserve her. 

Ralph Reed: It’s Time To Leave the GOP Alone

Ok, yeah, I know, we are supposed to leave the Primaries in the past and not rub in our victory and all that, but I have one last thing to discuss about Ralph Reed, and then he and I are hopefully done for good.

An email conversation that Erick and I had made me really think of something.  The conversation came about from an off-handed comment I made about someone in GA politics, and it got me thinking about other people in the world of GA politics, past and present.

This led me to think about some of the events that have happened in relation to the Georgia GOP in recent years, and it hit me:  Ralph Reed has been a virus to this Party. 

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Reed’s Endorsement Backlash and GOP Presidential Primary

We have already heard some of the things going on with the fact that Sen Balfour endorsed Reed in the Primary and attempted to have Waffle House campaign for Ralph, but I wanted to provide a little analysis on some of Reed’s other “big name” endorsements, which Reed supporters boasted were going to lead him to the Lt. Gov’s office.

This is pretty basic stuff, here, but bear with me.

Did anyone else find it interesting that with the exception of Zell Miller (he’s excluded from this analysis on the basis that he isn’t really in politics anymore, officially, at least), Reed’s endorsements were from some relatively big political names, each of whom are already in the news for something totally unrelated to who they endorse in a down ticket race in the Georgia Primary? 

Newt Gingrich and Rudy Guiliani both endorsed Ralph, but why?  The answer is not difficult … they needed Ralph, more than he needed them, and those endorsements never had anything to do with Georgia or the Primary (or Ralph Reed, for that matter).

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I Tip My Hat

I just want to use my front page posting ability to brag for a minute.  No, I’m not here to rub in the Casey Cagle win … I’ve already done that enough.

I want to brag about Peach Pundit, specifically a couple of guys that turned a hobby into an awesome little operation. 

I had the most election night fun last night that I’ve probably ever had and I was sitting at home the entire time (Sure, I probably need to get out more, but why leave the house when everything I need is right there?)! 

Peach Pundit was no doubt the first to call the win for Casey Cagle, and we were first to report all of the other major events throughout the night! 

The coverage was awesome, the results were awesome; it was an overall great night for the GOP, and I know there are a lot of Democrats out there who are still celebrating too, many of whom get their news from Peach Pundit, as many GOP supporters do.

Erick, Clayton, Jeff and the others did a heckuva job with the coverage, and we can guarantee that the General will be just as much, if not more fun!

Now, get out there and support our GOP ticket, and stay tuned to Peach Pundit for the best political news in the Georgia!

Repeating a lie doesn’t make it true

These were the words of Cynthia McKinney as she gave her speech tonight, accepting her re-election win. 

“Repeating a lie doesn’t make it true,” commented Rep McKinney in her acceptance speech.

As Cynthia gave her speech, she proudly wore her Congressional Member lapel pin, which she forgot to put on the day she assaulted a member of the Capitol Police force. 

Cynthia spent the evening dancing with war protester Cindy Sheehan, doing the electric slide, jamming with her tamborine. 

“The only special interest money you will see in my campaign coffer will be from the people,” McKinney boasted.  She alluded to her appearance in the movie, American Blackout, as a basis for that claim (whatever that means).

As she spoke out against the war, supporters shouted “amens” and “yes ma’ams” as if they were supporting a Sunday morning sermon from the pulpit and as if they had a clue as to what she was talking about. 

McKinney ignored her horrific reflection in the tele-prompter to boast that she was the first to speak of the “proven” scandals relating to the Carlyle Group and Haliburton.  Oddly enough, she didn’t mention the evidence in these cases.

“We don’t even train and teach our children, and yet $21 billion can be lost in the Iraqi rebuilding and nothing can be said about it,” McKinney commented.  Apparently, she is confused with her own education (or lack thereof).

NEWSFLASH, Cynthia:  Our children receive education.  Perhaps not in DeKalb, but that would be YOUR FAULT. 

Here is one final note about Cynthia McKinney:  the people that voted her into office deserve her.  The people who failed to show up and vote against her deserve her even more. 

She and Hank Johnson will now face off in a runoff.  Remember, last time she lost the runoff.  We can only hope … 

Returns Open Thread

Polls are closed.  Returns are coming in. 

What do you think?

In urban areas, so far, it seems the night belongs to Casey. It is the rural areas where there is a fight. But, the night is still young. Moore is beating Reddy at this stage.

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Casey is doing well so far in Cobb County — very well. He’s also leading in Fulton.

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Has the constant punching in Ralph’s face paid off? Casey’s won freaking Pulaski County, folks!

Please your bets. Will there be a runoff for the Dem’s Governor race?

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Don’t look now, but Konop is getting slaughtered by Price? What was that about Price being so nervous he had to run ads?

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I don’t see how Ralph can pull this out. I think we’ve got Lt. Gov. Cagle. Someone better put some cinderblocks on Joel’s head.