Secretary of State Kemp Announces Recount for Republican State School Superintendent Candidates
Notice of Recount Request
Michael L. “Mike” Buck, a Republican candidate for State School Superintendent, has requested a recount of all votes in the Republican Primary Runoff held on July 22, 2014.
Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 21-2-495(c), the Secretary of State has notified all county election superintendents of Mr. Buck’s request and further directed that such superintendents conduct a recount of all votes cast in the Republican Primary Runoff for State School Superintendent.
Such recount is to be held and completed no later than 12:00 noon on Thursday, July 31, 2014. Continue reading →
Reviews Are In: Jason Carter Has An Ethics Problem
On Friday, the Carter for Governor Campaign was buried under a series of ethics allegations filed by former State Senator and Newton County Commissioner John Douglas. While the campaign tried to deflect, their on camera performance was overwhelmingly lackluster with many critics agreeing that Jason Carter has an ethics problem. Continue reading →
Yesterday’s Michelle Nunn memo leak suggests she shares a strategy ghost writer with Senator Jason Carter.
“Nunn and Carter are running on a shared platform of ‘Hey, Look At My Last Name and Don’t Ask Any Questions,’ said Deal for Governor spokesperson Jen Talaber. “As ticket mates and experts in ‘Dodge, Duck, and Redirect’ political communications, the Nunn and Carter camps share joint custody of the campaign playbook. “When it comes to talking about serious issues, they would just rather not. They can’t tell the truth about their liberal positions and liberal records, so they contort, twist and turn more than a Cirque du Soleil acrobat.
“The Nunn memo makes an observation that should win the ‘Pointing Out the Obvious Award’: ‘There will emerge issues on which the candidate will have to comment or take a position.’ Yet Senator Carter doesn’t seem to take this basic advice seriously. He can’t take a stand because on every major issue he has to choose between alienating his liberal Democratic base or the more conservative independents all statewide candidates need to win. On issue after issue, Carter tries to have it both ways. Continue reading →
Deal: Latvian-based manufacturer to create 150 jobs in Dublin
Valmiera Glass to establish its first U.S.-based headquarters in Laurens County, invest $20 million
Gov. Nathan Deal announced today that Valmiera Glass, a Latvian-based manufacturer of fiberglass products, will locate to Dublin, creating 150 jobs and investing $20 million within five years into its first U.S.-based headquarters and manufacturing facility.
“It is no surprise that Valmiera Glass would select Georgia for its first U.S. headquarters,” said Deal. “This project represents the first substantial investment from the former Soviet Union, which underscores the fact that Georgia’s thriving automotive and aerospace industries are gaining attention in the international marketplace. Valmiera Glass will set the stage for other companies in that region to locate to Georgia.”
Valmiera Glass will locate on 40 acres in an industrial park on I-16 in Dublin. Continue reading →
Since its inception, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare as it is commonly referred to as, has been dying a slow death.
Last week that death process may have sped up.
In two separate rulings, federal appellate courts in the 4th and DC Circuits handed down conflicting rulings on whether the government can issue subsidies for health insurance premiums to those people participating in exchanges set up by the federal government.
Exchanges are websites, or marketplaces if you will, where Americans can shop for health insurance plans that are offered through Obamacare. The plans on the website meet the minimum standards of Obamacare and give consumers the opportunity to compare the plans and calculate the federal subsidies that would be available to help pay for each particular plan.
States were given the option of setting up their own exchanges or having the federal government set up the exchanges for them. Continue reading →
A twice-failed candidate for Georgia governor found himself in an uncomfortable position — face-to-face with a mom furious with what he was trying to do this month with her teenage daughter.
Legal experts say what happened does not appear to be a crime, but the incident once again raises questions about actions involving Ray McBerry.
McBerry is a former high school teacher who now owns a cable TV station in Henry County. Several years ago his teaching license was suspended after he apologized for his behavior with a 16-year-old girl. But he sees nothing wrong with what happened with 18-year-old Kayla Gooch.
The 46-year-old McBerry has faced angry parents before. In 2010, during his second failed attempt at winning the Republican nomination for Governor, a woman came forward accusing McBerry of having sex with her when she was 16 and he was a high school teacher. The Georgia Professional Standards investigative summary shows no allegations of sex at the time, but kissing and fondling. McBerry admitted only hugging… but also to giving the girl a cell phone and meeting her on a dirt road after her parents told him to stay away.
During the campaign, McBerry said “they were nothing more than family friends… people we went to church with… we were in their home… they were in our home.. there was no improper relationship between me and the young lady.”
His teaching license was suspended and records show he never taught in a public school again. After the news broke, fellow gubernatorial candidate Karen Handel refused to share the stage with McBerry.
Four years later, McBerry is asking an 18-year-old girl to put on a bikini and take pictures with him at a state park. She asks if it’s OK to bring someone along. Instead, he writes:
“I’ve never had anyone bring someone to a shoot before or be uncomfortable shooting with me.”
Michelle Nunn can come across as a “lightweight,” “too liberal,” not a “real Georgian.” While she served as CEO for the Points of Light Foundation, the organization gave grants to “inmates” and “terrorists.” And her Senate campaign must feature images of her and her family “in rural settings with rural-oriented imagery” because the Atlanta-based candidate will struggle to connect with rural voters.
These may sound like attacks from the Senate candidate’s Republican rival, but in fact, those are a few of the concerns expressed in her own campaign plan, which sources say was posted online briefly in December and appears to have been drafted earlier that month. Drawing on the insights of Democratic pollsters, strategists, fundraisers, and consultants, the document contains a series of memos addressed to Nunn and her senior advisers.
From all appearances, the document was intended to remain confidential. It outlines the challenges inherent in getting Nunn, who grew up mostly in Bethesda, Md., elected to the Senate in a state with a large rural population. Her father, Sam Nunn, was elected to the Senate when she was six, and Michelle Nunn attended Washington’s prestigious National Cathedral School and then the University of Virginia and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government before returning to Georgia to do nonprofit work and, now, to seek higher office.
The documents reveal the campaign’s most sensitive calculations. Much of the strategizing in the Georgia contest, as is typical in southern politics, revolves around race. But the Nunn memos are incredibly unguarded. One is from Diane Feldman, a Democratic pollster and strategist who counts among her clients Minnesota senator Al Franken, South Carolina representative James Clyburn, and former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Feldman, who did not return calls seeking comment, is frank in her characterization of the demographic groups — Jews, Asians, African Americans, Latinos, and gays — that are essential to a Democratic victory. The Nunn campaign declined to comment about the document on the record.
The campaign’s finance plan draws attention to the “tremendous financial opportunity” in the Jewish community and identifies Jews as key fundraisers. It notes, however, that “Michelle’s position on Israel will largely determine the level of support here.” That’s a position she has yet to articulate — her message on the subject is marked “TBD” in the document — and Israel goes unmentioned on her campaign website.
1. Nunn faces problems connecting with rural voters and should appeal to them by pretending to be more like them than the cosmpolitan DC-Atlanta hybrid she really is.
2. Gays and Asians have money and that’s what they’re good for to the Nunn campaign.
3. African-Americans and Hispanics have votes and she wants those too.
4. They expect the media to treat her better than she deserves because she’s a Democrat.
5. Points of Light, under her leadership, processed $33,000 in donations for a group linked to Hamas, an international terrorist group.
6. Jews have money too, and she wants that, though she doesn’t know what she thinks about Israel.
7. The magic number of white votes she needs is about 30% – Max Cleland took 30% when he lost in 2002, but greater numbers of African-American and Hispanic votes can get her over the top. Other Democratic statewide candidates have gotten around 24-26% of white votes.
The documents warn of weak spots stemming from Nunn’s role as CEO of a nonprofit foundation. They reveal the campaign’s clinic[al] assessment of how it must mobilize traditional liberal constituencies, like African-Americans, Jews and Asians. And they expose the campaign’s plan to sell Nunn with “rural” imagery that might soften up Georgia voters skeptical of a candidate reared partly in the suburbs of Washington, where her father served as a Georgia senator.
Beyond the potentially damaging aspects, the memos offer a rare, unvarnished glimpse into the mechanics of running a campaign. They cover everything from scrubbing a voter file to modeling turnout (1.4 million votes is Nunn’s magic number, according to a memo from Democratic strategist Diane Feldman). The documents map the architecture of Nunn’s outreach machine and detail which constituencies to target. Much of the information will reinforce negative impressions of how campaigns work, including suggestions for how to drive a message week-by-week and the ways it can whack Republican opponents.
The mechanics of the campaign being leaked aren’t particularly damaging – the recipe to the secret sauce is not really secret, and besides, no plan stays static in a major campaign. It’s the pragmatic way in which groups of people are analyzed for what Michelle Nunn can get out of them that’s problematic for her. From TheHill.com.
Republicans called such a campaign leak unprecedented.
“Never before has a Senate campaign openly admitted that its number one objective is to deceive voters and hide a candidate’s true beliefs from public view,” National Republican Senatorial Committee political director Ward Baker said in a statement. “The hundred plus pages of Michelle Nunn’s campaign plan reveals a deliberate effort to manipulate Georgia voters and hide the fact that Nunn’s campaign is a proxy for the agenda of Barack Obama and Harry Reid. The entire Nunn plan is dirty, offensive, and emblematic of why voters are so disenchanted with politics.”
In short, the memos are a classic example of what is known in Washington as a Kinsley gaffe: when a politician errs by accidentally revealing the truth. (The phenomenon is named after the journalist Michael Kinsley, who coined the phenomenon.) The existence of the memos is not a surprise; any campaign worth its salt undertakes a study of its perceived weaknesses. The Nunn memos are remarkable less for their judgments than for the fact that a hapless adviser apparently posted them on the Internet.
“Currently, there are no plans to vet donors to the campaign”
Nunn announced this month she would return money donated to her by Virtual Murrell, who was convicted of bribery in 1995 and reportedly had ties to the Blank Panther Party. Her campaign said she was unaware of his background when he co-hosted a Capitol Hill fundraiser for her.
Back in December, a document explaining the research department’s role said it would “vet individuals with whom the campaign associates — most frequently for events and site visits.”
“This vet includes a check for criminal records, ‘bad news’ stories, and inflammatory statements that could reflect poorly on the campaign,” one of the memos said. “Currently, there are no plans to vet donors to the campaign.”