Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for December 11, 2014

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Georgia and American History

On December 11, 1777, during their movement to Valley Forge for the winter, Washington’s colonial forces engaged British troops under General Cornwallis as the Americans were crossing the Schuylkill River.

Indiana became the 19th State on December 11, 1816.

Governor Charles McDonald signed legislation on December 11, 1841 to prevent a person from having his or her testimony excluded in court because of the individual’s religious beliefs.

The first use of nitrous oxide as a dental anesthetic took place on December 11, 1844.

On December 11, 1872, Pinckney Benton Stewart Pinchback took office in Louisiana as the first black Governor in the United States.

A memorial service for Jefferson Davis, former President of the Confederate States of America, was held in the Georgia State Capitol on December 11, 1889 while his funeral was that day in New Orleans.

On December 11, 1941, Germany declared war on the United States.

On December 11, 1960, a civil rights demonstration including 8000 African-American citizens was held in Atlanta as part of the movement to boycott stores that remained segregated.

The Libertarian Party was founded on December 11, 1971 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Tonight at 7 PM at North Avenue Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, Senator Renee Unterman (R-Buford) will lead a candlelight vigil in support of “Safe Harbor” legislation for victims of sex trafficking. in conjunction with Street Grace, Wellspring Living, youthSpark and Georgia Cares.

Candlelight Vigil

This morning, Sen. Unterman will pre-file legislation in the Georgia Senate to further the protection of child victims. The “safe harbor” legislation will address inconsistencies in the prosecution of human trafficking cases at the state level, impose harsher punishments on those convicted of this terrible crime, and create a funding mechanism to provide for the care and rehabilitation of child sex trafficking victims.

“It has been a long four-year journey of advocacy, education, and sincere determination explaining to Georgia citizens exactly what is happening to vulnerable children in the child sex trafficking trade. House Bill 200, authored by former state Rep. Ed Lindsey, was a historic change to Georgia law that punishes criminals who prey on children by selling them for profit in the sex trade. This bill increased criminal penalties with prison terms and fines, as well as allowed confiscation of assets and affirmative defense,” said Sen. Unterman. (more…)

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for December 8, 2014

President Abraham Lincoln issued his Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction on December 8, 1863.

First, it allowed for a full pardon for and restoration of property to all engaged in the rebellion with the exception of the highest Confederate officials and military leaders.

Second, it allowed for a new state government to be formed when 10 percent of the eligible voters had taken an oath of allegiance to the United States.

Third, the Southern states admitted in this fashion were encouraged to enact plans to deal with the freed slaves so long as their freedom was not compromised.

On December 8, 1899, Georgia Governor Allen Candler signed legislation to levy a tax on all dogs older than four months.

The United States declared war on Japan on December 8, 1941. Montana Congresswoman Jeanette Rankin, the first female elected to the United States House of Representatives, cast the sole dissenting vote.

John Lennon was shot and killed outside his apartment building in New York City on December 8, 1980.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

CANDIDATE FORUM TONIGHT FOR HD50 SPECIAL ELECTION: The Johns Creek Community Association is hosting a Candidate Forum today, Monday, December 8, 2014 for the special election to fill the Georgia House District 50 seat. The election will be held on January 6, 2015 and early voting begins on December 15 at the Johns Creek Environmental Center.

This forum will be your only opportunity to hear all 5 candidates answer your questions. The Forum will be held at the Thornhill Clubhouse.

You can meet the candidates at 6:30 PM and the Q&A will begin at 7:00 PM.

Former President George W. Bush (43) was in Valdosta last week at Moody Air Force Base, signing copies of his book, 41: A Portrait of My Father.

Hundreds of people lined up at Moody’s Base Exchange for hours, just to get the opportunity to shake George W. Bush’s hand and get a signed copy of his new book.

“It’s an opportunitiy of a lifetime to come and get the chance to shake his hand and thank him for his service to the country”, says Marla Haag, a Book Signing Attendee.

“I’m most excited to hopefully shake his hand. That was my ultimate goal”, says Staff Sergeant, Kyle Pantermoller.

41: Portraits Of My Father is the Former President’s second book, and is a biography of his father, George Bush Senior. Though politics aren’t discussed in the book, it gives a unique look in to presidential life… which is one reason why Staff Sergeant Pantermoller says he was excited to read it.

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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for December 5, 2014

On December 5, 1765, the British ship Speedwell arrived in Savannah with supplies for implementing the Stamp Act.

Georgia voters approved a new state Constitution, the seventh in state history, on December 5, 1877; also approved on the statewide ballot was to keep the state capital in Atlanta instead of returning it to Milledgeville. Notably, Section II, Paragraph V of the 1877 Constitution read:

“Lobbying is declared to be a crime, and the General Assembly shall enforce this provision by suitable penalties.”

On December 5, 1933, the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Utah ratified the 21st Amendment to the Constitution, repealing Prohibition under the 18th Amendment. FDR ran for President in 1932 supporting repeal.

On December 5, 1941, ten state institutions of higher learning, including the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech, lost their accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools due to political meddling by Gov. Eugene Talmadge.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Today at 10 AM, the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners will hold a meeting to introduce Commissioner-elect Nancy Jester, who will be the only Republican on the County Commission.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for December 4, 2014

On December 4, 1783, General George Washington told his officers he would resign his commission and return to his life at Mount Vernon.

The Battle of Waynesboro, Georgia was fought between Wheeler’s Confederate cavalry and Kilpatrick’s federal troops on December 4, 1864.

Governor William Northen signed legislation placing on the statewide ballot a constitutional amendment to increase the number of Georgia Supreme Court Justices from 3 to 5 on December 4, 1893.

On December 4, 1932, a 12-foot tall statue of Tom Watson, former state legislator, Congressman, and United States Senator from Georgia, was placed on the State Capitol Grounds.

On December 4, 1945, the United States Senate voted to approve full U.S. participation in the United Nations. Georgia’s Senators voted in favor.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Mike Young, previously Mayor of Helena, Georgia, will serve as the first Mayor of McRae-Helena, a combined city, after winning a runoff election.

In a pretty odd situation, Robert Goff won the runoff election for Dade County Commission District 3, with 475 votes to 272 for incumbent Rick Breeden.

Goff previously represented District 3 on the County Commission. He resigned last March in order to run for a spot in the statehouse against Georgia Rep. John Deffenbaugh.

After the loss, Goff decided to run for the commission seat he’d given up.

“To carry the county again under the circumstances, it’s an honor to me,” he said.

Because Goff resigned from the commission midterm, he will only serve on the County Commission for another two years before there will be another general election for two commissioner seats, as well as the county mayor.

Breeden, the man who replaced Goff after Goff’s resignation, said he is fine with the outcome. He said he only stepped up after community members asked him to.

Ashley Durrence was elected Chairman of the Tattnall County Commission in a runoff election with 63 percent of the vote to 37 percent for Keith Dixon.

Rob Simms will take the reins of the National Republican Congressional Committee, according to Politico:

Coming off a big win on Election Day, the National Republican Congressional Committee — the campaign arm of House Republicans — will move its political director, Rob Simms, up to executive director.

“Rob was instrumental in helping us win this historic majority and now he’s going to lead our efforts to keep it and help Members build the best campaigns possible,” said NRCC Chairman Greg Walden (Ore.) said in a statement.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to work with Chairman Greg Walden again and look forward to continuing to be a part of our outstanding team at the NRCC,” Simms said. “Chairman Walden and I want to build upon the improvements we made in 2014, and engineer a stronger committee and an even stronger majority.”

Simms served as Georgia’s deputy secretary of state from 2007-09, and has been involved in multiple congressional and gubernatorial campaigns.

Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens has joined the 17-state lawsuits against President Obama’s Executive Amnesty.

The 17-state coalition led by Texas is suing over Obama’s recently announced executive actions on immigration, arguing in a lawsuit filed Wednesday that the move “tramples” key portions of the U.S. Constitution.

Merry Hunter Hipp, communications specialist in Gov. Nathan Deal’s office, directed questions about Georgia’s involvement to the state’s Attorney General’s Office.

“We are a nation of immigrants, and I value the many contributions made to our country by immigrants. We are also a nation of laws,” said Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens in a statement.

“As the complaint itself states, ‘This lawsuit is not about immigration. It is about the rule of law, presidential power, and enforcement of the U.S. Constitution.’ There is no question that immigration reform is needed. However, President Obama’s unconstitutional, short-term action only adds to uncertainty faced by those wishing to live in our country.”

 

Deal rings in a new tradition

Georgia Liberty Bell photo by Georgia Building Authority

Photo by Georgia Building Authority

Governor Nathan Deal will ring Georgia’s replica of the Liberty Bell to mark the opening of his inauguration ceremony on January 12, 2015.

“The Liberty Bell, much like Liberty Plaza, has historical significance to our state,” Deal said. “It was intended for use at patriotic occasions, and we look forward to restoring that tradition. It is my hope that the Liberty Bell will become part of Georgia’s inaugural ceremony for years to come.”

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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for December 1, 2014

General George Washington set up winter headquarters at Morristown, New Jersey on December 1, 1779.

On November 30, 1782, British and American signed a preliminary treaty in Paris to end the American Revolution, which included withdrawal of British troops and recognition of American independence.

Georgia ratified the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution on November 29, 1794, which reads,

The judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States by citizens of another state, or by citizens or subjects of any foreign state.

The election for President of the United States, in which no candidate received a majority of electoral votes, went to the United States House of Representatives on December 1, 1824.

Andrew Jackson of Tennessee won 99 electoral and 153,544 popular votes; John Quincy Adams–the son of John Adams, the second president of the United States–received 84 electoral and 108,740 popular votes; Secretary of State William H. Crawford, who had suffered a stroke before the election, received 41 electoral votes; and Representative Henry Clay of Virginia won 37 electoral votes.

As dictated by the Constitution, the election was then turned over to the House of Representatives. The 12th Amendment states that if no electoral majority is won, only the three candidates who receive the most popular votes will be considered in the House. Representative Henry Clay, who was disqualified from the House vote as a fourth-place candidate, agreed to use his influence to have John Quincy Adams elected.

On November 29, 1947, the United Nations passed a resolution to partition Palestine and allow the creation of a Jewish state of Israel.

The Tawana Brawley case began on November 28, 1987; the greatest lasting impact would be the rise to celebrity of community activist the Rev. Al Sharpton.

The City of Sandy Springs began operations at one second after midnight on December 1, 2005. Three years later, Dunwoody became a new city, on December 1, 2008.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Columbia County voters will return to the polls tomorrow, December 5, 2014, in the runoff elections for Commission District 3.

District 3 polling places will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Dec. 2.

Trip Derryberry, a Martin­ez businessman, and Mack Taylor, a lawyer and former assistant district attorney, were the top two vote-getters Nov. 4 in the field of four vying to fill the seat vacated by Charles Allen, who resigned in March.

DeKalb County voters will choose between Republican Nancy Jester and Independent Holmes Pyles for the County Commission District 1 seat vacated after former Commissioner Elaine Boyer resigned and pled guilty to official corruption charges. (more…)

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 26, 2014

President George Washington declared November 26, 1789 the first “public day of thanksgiving and prayer.”

By the President of the United States of America, a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and—Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me “to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favor, able interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations, and beseech Him to pardon our national and other trangressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally, to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Go. Washington

On November 26, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Fourth Thursday in November as the modern Thanksgiving celebration.

[I]t was not until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving to fall on the last Thursday of November, that the modern holiday was celebrated nationally.

With a few deviations, Lincoln’s precedent was followed annually by every subsequent president–until 1939. In 1939, Franklin D. Roosevelt departed from tradition by declaring November 23, the next to last Thursday that year, as Thanksgiving Day. Considerable controversy surrounded this deviation, and some Americans refused to honor Roosevelt’s declaration. For the next two years, Roosevelt repeated the unpopular proclamation, but on November 26, 1941, he admitted his mistake and signed a bill into law officially making the fourth Thursday in November the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day.

On the same day, a Japanese navy fleet left port headed toward Pearl Harbor.

Transportation Funding

Senator Johnny Isakson wrote in the AJC that the federal government should consider moving to user fees to pay for transportation infrastructure.

With drivers buying less gasoline, the revenue coming into the Highway Trust Fund has dropped. Given these factors and recent trends, it is likely our gas consumption will continue to decline. Simply raising the tax rate on a declining revenue source isn’t the solution for our long-term infrastructure needs.

In 2015, we have a real opportunity to repair this broken trust fund and find a new formula that fits the needs of 21st century America. It is time we change the trust fund model to a “user-pays” system. Everyone who uses the roads and other modes of transportation financed through the trust fund should pay into the system.

I also support letting states set their own infrastructure funding priorities. While the federal government should prioritize projects important to the nation as a whole, states have a much better sense of their day-to-day infrastructure needs, and they should be given the flexibility to direct the use of gas tax revenues collected within their borders.

One way a user fee for highways can work is seen on I-85 in Gwinnett County, where a Peach Pass gets you access to the HOT lanes, which are usually moving faster than the prole lanes. Remember how that went over when it first started?

#FergusonAtl

Barricades CapitolSM

Last night, some Atlanta residents took to the street to protest the decision by a Missouri grand jury declining to indict a police office.

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