Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 31, 2014

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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for July 31, 2014

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.”

Newsbites

The search for a new Savannah police chief has settled on eight finalist candidates – Savannah Morning News.

A new poll shows Republican David Perdue with a 49-40 lead over Democrat Michelle Nunn.

Tax-free savings this weekend include: clothing and footwear under $100, school supplies under $20 and computers/computer equipment under $1,000 – Columbus Ledger-Enquirer.

If you know a school teacher, consider giving them cash or a gift card to help them pay for school supplies they have to pay for out of their pockets.

Georgia DOT will take a break from road construction for the sales tax holiday – Athens Banner-Herald.

The funeral procession for the last surviving member of the Enola Gay aircrew began in Snellville to the Atlanta airport, from where he willl be taken to Northumberland, Pennsylvania for burial – Gwinnett Daily Post.

Augusta Commissioners voted unanimously to raise property taxes by 1.75 mills – Augusta Chronicle.

Don’t taze me, bro! – Lincoln County has received two new tazers donated by the Deputy J.D. Paugh Foundation – Augusta Chronicle.

Richmond County Board of Elections is predicting 40 to 50 percent voter turnout in November for the General Election – Augusta Chronicle.

Congressman Paul Broun is cosponsoring legislation to legalize marijuana-derived medications at the federal level – Athens Banner-Herald.

The bipartisan bill, sponsored by Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., and cosponsored by Reps. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., and Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., in addition to Broun, would amend the federal Controlled Substances Act “to exclude therapeutic hemp and cannabidiol from the definition of marijuana.” The proposal has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce and Judiciary committees.

Euthanasia rates are falling at the Fulton and DeKalb animal shelters – WABE.

A Doraville businessman was sentenced under federal charges of attempting to bribe city officials – Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Augusta, Georgia native Virginia Dent, who starts a new job working for Georgia’s senior United States Senator Saxby Chambliss next month, was named one of the 50 Most Beautiful in DC by The Hill.

Still not convinced that the media is out to get Gov. Nathan Deal and Attorney General Sam Olens? Then why is this a story that includes mention of subpoenas when the AG has shown pretty conclusively that it had no connection?

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Kelly Amanda Lee wants Secretary of State Brian Kemp to make a decision already on the Macon-Bibb border dispute – Macon Telegraph.

A Fulton County judge has moved to limit the remaining options for settling the disputed border between Bibb and Monroe counties, but Secretary of State Brian Kemp and Macon-Bibb County plan to appeal.

Superior Court Judge Kelly Lee has ruled that Kemp can’t accept more evidence, from a surveyor or from the counties, before making a decision.

“I very much disagree with the latest ruling issued regarding the Monroe-Bibb county line dispute,” Kemp said Wednesday via email through spokesman Jared Thomas. “It is very important that the Secretary of State be able to examine all evidence and speak with all relevant parties in order to reach the proper decision, and this ruling makes that more difficult. I am working with our legal counsel to determine the best option going forward to achieve a fair and just result for the citizens of Monroe and Bibb counties.”

Irony Department – Part One

That time the federal Environmental Protection Agency came to Atlanta to talk about fighting global warming and this happened:

Atlanta Weather Irony Department

Common Core Committee Convened

A state legislative committee has convened to discuss Common Core and the role of the federal government in education – Savannah Morning News.

With armed officers outside the door and a packed audience of representatives of education organizations and tea party groups, the committee spent most of its first meeting hearing about federal funding through grants and entitlement programs and about the evolution of the Common Core. State Superintendent of Schools John Barge explained that while individual schools may get less than 10 percent of their funding from the federal government, about 60 percent of the state Department of Education’s budget depends on money from Washington.

Conservatives critical of the Common Core charge that state officials are beholden to federal directives because of that funding, and they point to the multi-state standards as proof. But Barge explained that the federal government didn’t draft Common Core.

Nevertheless, critics — including the Republican nominee to succeed Barge, Richard Woods — say Common Core is less stringent than Georgia’s previous standards. Many also express concern that the values families here give their children will be undermined by texts designed for Common Core’s national market.

Rep. Brooks Coleman, a retired educator who chairs the House Education Committee, said the panel will hold three day-long meetings in coming months to give members of the public ample time to voice their support or concerns about Common Core before the committee writes its report for the legislature in December. He assured the many Common Core opponents fidgeting in the room during Barge’s presentation that they will get their chance then.

Immigration Issues

After Governor Nathan Deal expressed concerns about unaccompanied minors from other countries being moved into Georgia, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said their welcome in the capital city.

The children, who come from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, are apprehended at the U.S./Mexico border. They’re placed with sponsors, usually family members, while they await a court date. Those who qualify for special juvenile status can stay, but all aren’t eligible. Reed said they should all be welcomed.

“It’s very important that we send a signal that we’re going to be a welcoming community, that we’re going to allow these folks to be trained, and to treat them well, certainly children, there should be no debate about this,” he said.

A group that included the representatives of the AFL-CIO held a rally at the state Capitol calling for immigration reform.

“We are here to uplift the injustice our brothers and sisters are facing,” said Yvonne Robinson, secretary-treasurer of Georgia’s AFL-CIO. “We stand for a humane, practical path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants (and) rational operational control of the border. And the keyword here is rational.”

Voicing their concerns with current immigration law, many speakers emphasized its effect on families. When some members enter this country legally or were born here and others enter without documentation, the family is broken up as a result of deportation.

Because Congress will not be in session in August, Rep. Pedro Marin, D-Duluth, said President Barack Obama should work toward changes in immigration law.

“(We’re) also asking President Obama to really stop deportation and stop splitting families,” Marin said. “I think now with the recess, I think that is one of the most important points that he can do as a presidential initiative.”

“We commend the mayor on his action, but we also know those actions have to be from a larger place – from higher up in legislation,” she said. “…You can welcome them, but if the state laws say one thing, they’re still in jeopardy of being arrested and deported.”

Irony Department – Part Two, Michelle Nunn edition

When the first time you used your strategy for combating criticism to fight back over criticism over the memo that laid out that strategy.

From the Nunn Campaign Strategy Memo:

Step One, Page 57:

“We will identify key leaders in the community – validators — outside the campaign who can be deployed in the event we come under criticism. Ideally, these individuals would be quoted by name in the press and be willing to contact members of the press in concert with our message.”

Step Two, Page 12:

“All surrogates will be provided with appropriate talking points, background materials and information concerning the event.”

Step Three, Page 38:

“Of special concern is clergy….”

From the AJC Political Insider by Jim Galloway:

A flurry of calls from Michelle Nunn’s supporters came a day after the 144-page series of memos outlining her campaign strategy was exposed, and they used phrases like “routine” and “old news” and “a lot about nothing.”

So that’s steps one and two, get your defenders lined up and make sure all the surrogates are on the same page with talking points.

Some spoke on record and other spoke on background. But all calls were arranged by the Democrat’s campaign as an effort to push back on further stories about the leak.

Here’s step three, using a member of the clergy to make your political talking points.

One caller was the Rev. Raphael Warnock, the leader of Ebenezer Baptist Church and one of Nunn’s most prominent black supporters. He said he wasn’t surprised that “people are trying to make hay out of it.”

So, we now know that part of the Nunn Strategy hasn’t changed: duck, deny, distract.

Michelle Nunn’s Strategy in Pictures

Click here for the full Buzzfeed-style explanation of Michelle Nunn’s political strategy – here’s an excerpt.

Recently, a memo setting out Michelle Nunn’s campaign strategy was leaked and published by National Review. Here are some highlights, and a few we made up.

“So, my campaign plan got leaked by some hapless volunteer, and I was like, ‘ewwww!’”

Michelle Nunn

Amatuer hour, amirite? Goofy and Mickey Mouse? Check!

Nunn Mickey Mouse GoofyHeads will roll. It won’t be the first time. Maybe I’ll get a raise again this time!

Nunn laid off employees

And I’ll skip most appearances with the other candidates in the Democratic Primary because they don’t need to be taken seriously (page 55).

Nunn skips debate

Because this is a coronation, not a contest.

Basically, pretend I don’t know this guy.

Michelle Nunn Barack Obama v2

I really love that green shirt. It looks so cool with a black pantsuit. And with my favorite fashion accessory, former President George H.W. Bush.

Obama Holds Forum On Community Service Hosted By George H.W. Bush

Even if he doesn’t like my using that picture. Maybe he doesn’t recognize me when I’m not wearing that shirt.

My consultants tell me that it’s important to appeal to rural voters, and I can do that by getting my picture made in a field (page 110).

Nunn in a field

I love being in a field because I can wear my favorite color!

Jewish people are important too, because my consultants say “there is tremendous financial opportunity (page 74). But they’ll want to know what my position is on Israel. I wonder what my position is on Israel.

Michelle Nunn Israel

Maybe Hamas has some money. Because we have friends in common!

Michelle Nunn Hamas

Maybe I’ll ask my running mate Jason Carter what I should say about Israel and the Middle East.

Michelle Nunn Jason Carter

Pretty sure he has some experience with the issue.

Jimmy Jason Carter Jews

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