On December 13, 1636, the Massachusetts Bay Colony General Court organized three regiments of militia to guard against attacks by the Pequot Indians. That day is recognized as the birth of the National Guard.
Echols County, Georgia was created by the Georgia General Assembly on December 13, 1858.
Former Georgia Governor Ellis Arnall died on December 13, 1992. Arnall served in the State House, as Speaker, Attorney General, and in 1942 at the age of 35, was elected Governor.
Arnall also led the fight to outlaw the poll tax and the white primary, and is noted for making Georgia the first state to allow 18-year-olds to vote. He is further remembered for his role in obtaining a new state constitution for Georgia in 1945.
Al Gore conceded the presidential election to George W. Bush on December 13, 2000.
Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections
Voters in Northwest Georgia’s Senate District 54 go to the polls today to elect a new State Senator to succeed former Senator Charlie Bethel.
Polls for the special election are open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. as five candidates try to replace Charlie Bethel, a six-year veteran whom Gov. Nathan Deal appointed to the state’s court of appeals last month. The position covers Whitfield and Murray counties and parts of Pickens and Gordon counties.
In Georgia, the seat holder has to earn more than 50 percent of the vote to win. And with a crowded list of contenders today, there’s a chance the two most popular candidates will have to face each other in a runoff on Jan. 10, a day after the Senate session begins.
The candidates for the seat are:
* Conda Lowery Goodson, an active community volunteer
* Chuck Payne, a retired juvenile court probation officer
* Debby Peppers, an attorney and former county commissioner
* Shell Underwood, an insurance counselor and former teacher
* William Vinyard, a contractor
The race is nonpartisan, but four of the candidates signed up as Republicans. Peppers registered as an Independent candidate. She and Payne were the two most politically active candidates prior to this week’s race.
Payne, a member of the local Republican Party since 1991, was the group’s chairman from 1998-2005 and again from 2013-15. He stepped down the second time to volunteer for Ben Carson’s presidential campaign.
Peppers is the most liberal candidate in a staunchly conservative region. During a candidate forum, she was the only one who argued against cutting property taxes while boosting sales tax, telling the audience the maneuver would disproportionately tax the poor. She also said she would not support legislation banning abortion in Georgia, arguing it would lead to a costly lawsuit in the U.S. Supreme Court.
The candidates appeared together in a public forum on Monday.
Goodson noted that people may be familiar with her from her previous run for Senate District 54, when she unsuccessfully challenged then-incumbent Charlie Bethel, R-Dalton, in the GOP primary earlier this year.
“I’ve been studying Georgia laws, and I’ve talked to tens of thousands of people. I’ve talked to hundreds of small business owners to find out what’s hurting them and what I can do to help them,” she said.
Payne said that although he was worked on numerous campaigns for others, this is the first time he has run for office.
“I’ve spent all of my adult life serving my country and my community, first in the Army and then for the Department of Juvenile Justice,” said Payne, who recently retired after 30 years with the department as a juvenile probation officer.
[Republican William] Vinyard said he is “a Christian, a conservative and a constitutionalist.”
“I’m a Marine Corps combat veteran. I’ve fought for my country, and I’ll fight for you,” he said.
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