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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 31, 2015

Georgia and American History

On July 31, 1777, the Marquis de LaFayette was commissioned a Major General in the Continental Army, serving without pay.

The cornerstone for the first United States Mint was laid in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on July 31, 1792, becoming the first building constructed by the federal government under the Constitution.

Former President Andrew Johnson, who succeeded President Lincoln upon his assassination and oversaw much of the post-Civil War Reconstruction era, died of a stroke in Tennessee on July 31, 1875.

On July 31, 1906, a bill to create place a Constitutional Amendment on the November election for voters to decide whether to create an intermediate-level Georgia Court of Appeals was approved by the Georgia General Assembly.

On July 31, 1962, the one-millionth immigrant was welcomed into Israel.

Nolan Ryan, the greatest pitcher in major league baseball history, won his 300th career game on July 31, 1990. During eight innings, Ryan threw 146 pitches, while today, many pitchers are pulled at around the 100-pitch count.

“In the old days throwing that many pitches was a normal game,” said Nolan Ryan, who tossed a record seven no-hitters and is the all-time leader in strikeouts, fifth in innings pitched.

Ryan, currently the Rangers’ team president, is an outspoken detractor of the recent trend toward monitoring pitch counts. In a recent Sports Illustrated article, Ryan expressed his belief that today’s pitchers are “pampered” and that there is no reason why today’s pitchers cannot pitch as much as he and his colleagues did back in the day. As a result, Ryan is pushing his team’s pitchers to throw deeper into games and extend their arms further, emphasizing conditioning over what some would call coddling.

As Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux told SI: “This generation of players has become a creature of the pitch count. Their ceiling has been lowered. It’s up to us to jack it back up.”

Georgia Politics

A fire destroyed the Monroe County home of Brian and Janea Cox, the parents of Haleigh, who became the poster child for medical cannabis in Georgia.

Six-year-old Haleigh Cox and her parents, Janea and Brian Cox, appear to have lost everything and are awaiting an insurance assessment. The fire occurred just days before Janea Cox and Haleigh were set to return home, after spending the past year in Colorado. There, the girl has been on a therapeutic regimen that includes an extract of cannabis.

Her family has said a liquid form of the drug has helped reduce her seizures.

Janea Cox said by telephone that her family is grateful for all the love and support from friends, family and the community.

“We will get through this storm and hopefully come out stronger,” she said.

Donations for the Coxes are being collected by Northway Church. Pastor Kevin Mills said the church does not yet have a list of the family’s immediate needs. Donations can be made via the church website or by calling 478-476-1971.

From their church’s website:

To Donate Via Check To The Haleigh Cox Family

  • Make checks payable to Northway Church with General Memorial Fund written on the memo line.
  • For donations mailed to Northway Church please include this information:

Northway Church
Attn: Haleigh Cox Family
5915 Zebulon Road
Macon, GA 31210

To Make A Donation Online

  1. Click here
  2. Fill out your information
  3. In the drop down box select General Memorial Fund
  4. IMPORTANT: Email [email protected] with your name and gift amount.

Pretty funny campaign ad, and I think it’ll be effective. I don’t know anything about it other than that it popped up in my Facebook feed.Continue Reading..


Adoptable Georgia Dogs for July 31, 2015


McLovin is a 3 month old Labrador Retriever mix puppy who is looking for his first and forever home! Animal control facilities are no place to call home, but that is the only home he has ever had, so he is happy and thankful to have what he does have. He is very playful with other dogs and puppies, is great with kids and is slowly learning how to walk on a leash. He and his 1 brother and 1 sister were brought here by a woman who found them after they had been dumped in front of her house.

McLovin is available for adoption from Meriwether County Animal Shelter in Greenville, GA.


Tamarind is a young female Redbone Coonhound/Labrador Retriever mix who is looking for a new home. She is somewhat timid, but very sweet and would love to be a lap dog. Tamarind is available for adoption from Meriwether County Animal Shelter in Greenville, GA.


“Cass” is a young female shepherd mix who needs a new home. She is doing great living in a kennel with another dog. They have become good friends. Cass is available for adoption from Meriwether County Animal Shelter in Greenville, GA.

DeKalb Littles

DeKalb County Animal Services wants you to know that they have a number of small dogs that are available for adoption.


Georgia judicial investigations become prosecutions |

More than five dozen Georgia judges have stepped down from the bench in disgrace since the state’s judicial watchdog agency began aggressively policing ethical conduct eight years ago.

More lately, however, the jurists aren’t just leaving the court in disgrace. Some are leaving in handcuffs.

via Georgia judicial investigations become prosecutions |


Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 30, 2015

July 30th could be celebrated as the birthday of democracy in America, as the Virginia House of Burgesses became the first legislative body in the New World on July 30, 1619.

 Its first law, which, like all of its laws, would have to be approved by the London Company, required tobacco to be sold for at least three shillings per pound. Other laws passed during its first six-day session included prohibitions against gambling, drunkenness, and idleness, and a measure that made Sabbath observance mandatory.

On July 30, 1931, Georgia Governor Richard B. Russell, Jr. signed legislation merging Milton and Fulton Counties if voters in each county approved a referendum. Fulton had earlier merged with Campbell County, to the south.

Actor Laurence Fishburn was born in Augusta, Georgia on July 30, 1961.

President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed legislation creating Medicare, for seniors, and Medicaid for some low-income people on July 30, 1965.

Georgia Politics

Ammon Williams, the 17-year old son of Republican State Senator Michael Williams (R-Cumming) is hospitalized in an induced coma after a skateboarding accident. We’re praying for the Williams family.

As you’ll no doubt be reminded dozens of times over the next couple days, Georgia’s Sales Tax Holiday runs July 31 through August 1. Click here for a flyer from the Georgia Department of Revenue on which items are not subject to sales tax this weekend.

Yesterday, Gov. Deal announced the formation of the State Steering Committee for the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI), including juvenile court judges and individuals from relevant state organizations, who will work to expand this juvenile reform to counties.

“Georgia leads the nation in meaningful justice reforms,” said Deal. “We rely on evidence while embracing innovations, and this latest move continues that pattern.”

A national initiative of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, JDAI works on a county-by-county basis to encourage appropriate community support for low-risk juvenile offenders to enhance public safety, help misguided youth and conserve taxpayer dollars. According to the foundation, communities participating in JDAI have lowered the number of youth in detention by 44 percent.

Clayton County adopted the initiative in 2003, ultimately resulting in an 80 percent decrease in its average daily detention population: less than 1 percent of the county’s youth felony offenders that benefit from detention alternatives are re-arrested for a felony charge. The initial Georgia expansion will take place in multiple counties, which will be determined through a collaboration with the Casey Foundation.

“As Clayton County proves, Georgia communities can use JDAI to keep our youth out of detention and in the running for a better life,” said Deal.

Governor Deal’s press spokesman Brian Robinson will be leaving his office on the first floor of the Georgia State Capitol to seek treasure in the private sector. Greg Bluestein of the AJC has a compendium of quotes, which leads us to wonder what the auditions will be like for a successor.

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Adoptable Georgia Dogs for July 30, 2015

Gwinnett Brothers

These two young brothers are in urgent need of adoptive or foster homes at the Gwinnett County Shelter.

Gwinnett 45849

Brother #45849 is in Pen #186 while brother #45850 is in Pen #209 across the aisle.

Pen 45850

Gwinnett 46057

This gorgeous Setter or Retriever (what I’d call simply a bird dog) is male, four years old and will be available for adoption beginning tomorrow, July 31, 2015 at the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter. If you’ve got your heart set on a bird dog, go ahead and get your paperwork in as soon as you can.

Gwinnett Rabbits

Gwinnett County Animal Shelter has had a large number of rabbits come into Animal Control from a hoarding or commercial situation and they’re desperately seeking homes for the bunnies. If you’re interested in helping, perhaps you could touch base with a local rabbit rescue group and ask to be part of their foster program.


Deal launches juvenile justice committee | Governor Nathan Deal Office of the Governor

Gov. Nathan Deal and the Georgia Criminal Justice Reform Council today announced the formation of the State Steering Committee for the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI). The committee, which will consist of juvenile court judges and individuals from relevant state organizations, will work to expand this reform effort to counties throughout Georgia.

“Georgia leads the nation in meaningful justice reforms,” said Deal. “We rely on evidence while embracing innovations, and this latest move continues that pattern.”Continue Reading..


Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 29, 2015

President Franklin D. Roosevelt made his eighth visit to Warm Springs, Georgia on July 29, 1927.

Congress passed legislation establishing the National Aeronautic and Space Admininistration (NASA) on July 29, 1958.

The Doors’ “Light My Fire” became their first #1 hit on July 29, 1967.

Carl Lewis won his fourth consecutive gold medal in the long jump at the Atlanta Olympics on July 29, 1996.

Yesterday, the last active M35 “Deuce and a Half” truck in service at Robins Air Force Base was moved to the Museum of Aviation and into the history books.

Georgia Politics

Republican J. Max Davis and Democrat Taylor Bennett will meet August 6th for a candidate forum at Oglethorpe University.

The Brookhaven Chamber of Commerce announced July 27 that it would host the forum on Aug. 6 at Lupton Hall on the Oglethorpe University campus. The forum is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

Democrat Taylor Bennett, a lawyer and former Georgia Tech football player, and J.Max Davis, a lawyer and the former mayor of Brookhaven, collected the most votes in the four-candidate field seeking the post in the July 14 runoff. Under Georgia law, when no candidate collects more than half the votes cast in an election, the top two finishers face one another in a runoff.

Davis and Bennett meet in the runoff election Aug. 11. During the forum, the candidates will answer only questions submitted in advance and presented through a moderator. To submit a question, go here.

In the runoff election for House District 155, Clay Pirkle has taken to Facebook to remind voters that early voting has begun.

Clay Pirkle Early Voting

Meanwhile, his opponent, Horace Hudgins is holding meet-and-greets for voters.

Horace Hudgins

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Adoptable Georgia Dogs for July 29, 2015

Aliya Pug

Aliya is a young pug a was born with a defect that left her blind in one eye. Then her other eye was injured – no one knows how – and had to be removed. A rescue group is prepared to take her in, but she needs donations to pay for her surgery, vetting, and transportation. You can make a pledge on Facebook in the thread about her surgery or contact [email protected] if you’re interested in adopting her.


Erik is a sweet middle-age to senior teddy bear dog who loves to hold hands with his people. He has some scars on his ears that are healing, but he’s a friendly and gentle giant who is available for adoption from DeKalb County Animal Control in Decatur, GA. Please email if you’re interested in Erik.


Huckleberry is a goofy 5-year old Bull Terrier mix who is available for adoption from DeKalb County Animal Services in Decatur, GA.

Huckleberry’s motto is two toys is always better than one! This goofy 5 year old American Staffordshire Terrier LOVES toys and will pick up as many as he can carry and trot around happily. He is a super friendly boy who can’t wait to have a home (and toys) of his very own! His adoption fee includes his neuter, vaccinations, microchip, and more! To adopt: [email protected] To foster: [email protected] To rescue: [email protected]

Remember: all dogs over 25 pounds at DeKalb County Animal Services are adoptable for $17.76 during the month of July.


State lawmakers expecting contentious 2016 session |

It’s still the dog days of summer, but state lawmakers are already anticipating a heated session of the Georgia General Assembly beginning in January 2016.

A few national debates have stirred the pot of controversy in recent weeks — for example, the Confederate battle flag’s place in the public arena — and representatives from Hall County said they expect these issues to flare up next year.

With major transportation funding in the bag, and medical cannabis now legal for eligible patients, it’s time to start thinking about what comes next.

Rep. Lee Hawkins, R-Gainesville, said he has been keeping busy speaking to professional dental, psychologist and medical groups lately.

Health care has long been a passion for Hawkins.

And it’s an issue Carl Rogers, R-Gainesville, is taking up as a current member of a House study committee on life insurance consumer disclosures.

Meanwhile, Sen. Butch Miller, R-Gainesville, is part of a group of lawmakers reviewing how cannabis oil might be manufactured, sold and purchased in the state.

While it is legal to possess the oil to treat eight medical conditions, including seizure disorders and cancer, access to medical cannabis remains an obstacle for most patients.

Made up of physicians, attorneys, state legislators and law enforcement representatives, the Commission on Medical Cannabis will help set Georgia’s policies on medical marijuana and will make recommendations regarding access and availability to cannabis oil to the governor and General Assembly later this year.

Previous commission meetings have addressed how Georgia’s policies and enforcement measures regarding cannabis oil compare with other states that have legalized some form of medical marijuana.

The commission will meet next in late August or early September, according to Miller.

via State lawmakers expecting contentious 2016 session.


Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 28, 2015

On July 28, 1868, United States Secretary of State William Seward proclaimed that the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution had been ratified and was now part of the Constitution. The first section of the 14th Amendment often forms the basis for litigation and reads:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Georgia at first rejected the 14th Amendment in 1866, later ratifying it on July 21, 1868 as a condition for readmission.

On July 28, 1978, Animal House was released, instantly becoming one of the greatest films of all time. In case you’ve never seen the film, there is some adult language in the following clip. +1 for Otter’s plaid pants.

On July 28, 1994, the United States Postal Service issued a stamp commemorating “The General” locomotive, which was stolen in 1862 during the Great Locomotive Chase. Today, The General may be viewed at The Southern Museum in Kennesaw.

Georgia Politics

Longtime Republican activist Betty Voyles died on Friday at the age of 84. From the obituary,

Betty was deeply committed and involved with the Republican Party, locally and nationally. She was proud to promote conservative causes long before Georgia became a Red State.

Betty was a Goldwater Girl. She volunteered countless hours over the years for prominent politicians including managing Senator Johnny Isakson’s very first state office campaign and staying on his campaign for every election thereafter. One of her most favorite memories was flying up with Johnny Isakson for his federal Congressional Inauguration. She had a double thrill when she was able to witness his Senatorial Inauguration in 2005.

Other friends for whom she worked hard were Newt Gingrich, Congressman Tom Price, and a slew of others who are indebted to her victorious efforts.

Her smiling face could always be seen at County and State Conventions, usually registering countless numbers of delegates and alternates. She was also a willing volunteer at fundraising dinners for the GAGOP and serving on the State Committee since 2000.

She earned the GAGOP State Volunteer Award in 1998. Her energy was only surpassed by her humility. Betty was totally surprised to be awarded the 2005 Connie Russell Midura Volunteer Legacy Award from the Fulton County Republican Party. She was a longtime member of the Fulton County GOP Circle R Club and was an active member and volunteer with the North Fulton Republican Women’s Club.

Governor Nathan Deal said that concern over the carving on Stone Mountain is misplaced,

I would ask those who think this is such a big issue, if they would exert the same amount of influence and time and effort to try to make sure that the children in our school systems in this state who are in failing schools get a good education, it will erase any of the things that they think the memorials symbolize. I would hope they see that in the same light in which I do.

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