Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for October 4, 2018

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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for October 4, 2018

On October 4, 1918, President Woodrow Wilson sent a telegram to the Georgia Democratic Party Convention delegates in appreciation for their support of his admininstration.

The Savannah River Bridge opened on October 4, 1925.

Beverly Hills, 90210 debuted on October 4, 1990.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

In-person early voting begins October 15, according to The Brunswick News.

The Macon Telegraph writes about Sunday early voting.

Sunday voting is coming to Macon for the upcoming election.

The chance for residents to cast their ballots on a Sunday will be Oct. 28 as part of the early voting period for the Nov. 6 general election.

The push to get Sunday voting could bring the after-church crowd out to the polls for what could be a close gubernatorial election between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp, along with a myriad of other races.

The hurdle to Sunday voting was cleared Tuesday when the Macon-Bibb County Commission approved $4,500 to fund the extra day. The elections board voted last month to have Sunday voting if the county provided the money.

Sunday voting will be held at the Board of Elections office from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 28. The early voting period runs from Oct. 18-Nov. 2.

Mail-in early voting has increased ahead of the November election, according to the AJC.

Almost twice as many absentee ballots have been mailed to Georgia election officials so far compared to the same point before midterm elections in 2014.

Election officials received 17,436 absentee ballots through Tuesday, according to numbers from the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office. Four years ago, 8,819 ballots had been recorded at this point in the election cycle.

By voting early, Georgians are already starting to decide the race for governor between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Brian Kemp, along with many other contests. Election Day is Nov. 6.

With so much time left before Election Day, it’s unclear whether the sharp increase in early voting will continue. In the 2014 election, a total of 954,010 people voted early, either by mail or in-person. Early voting accounted for 37 percent of turnout four years ago.

Some African-American churches are encouraging their congregations to vote by mail, according to the Courthouse News Service.

Organizers hope to register 20,000 people to vote during the registration drive and plan to promote the use of absentee ballots in African Methodist Episcopal churches in Georgia.

The New Georgia Project, a non-partisan Georgia-based partner of Faith in Action, launched the campaign on September 25, the annual holiday recognized as National Voter Registration Day. Called the “Vote By Mail” campaign, the initiative is co-sponsored by Justice Clergy 100 and by the three largest AME churches in Georgia.

“This is the first time that the bishops of the African Methodist Episcopal bodies in Georgia [African Methodist Episcopal, Christian Methodist Episcopal and African Methodist Episcopal Zion] have united to encourage their congregants to ‘Vote by Mail,’” New Georgia Project Executive Director Nse Ufot said in a statement.

The New Georgia Project was founded by Stacey Abrams, the current Democratic candidate for governor, in 2013 while she was serving as the Democrats’ minority leader in the Georgia House of Representatives.

Republican Brian Kemp rolled-out his health care reform plan, according to the Valdosta Daily Times.

Outside of the Cook Medical Center, Kemp introduced his plans to help rural Georgians handle “skyrocketing premiums” and “surprise medical bills.”

Standing before a crowd of about 100 people, he said his solution did not involve pouring more tax dollars into government programs. He said as governor he would lower insurance costs, cover people with pre-existing conditions and insure access to quality care.

“I have a better plan, a patient-centered system that’s right for Georgia — not California,” Kemp said. “Above all, I will put patients first.”

As governor, he said he would fund more residency positions in family medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology.

He also said he would grow the Rural Hospital Tax Credit Program, increasing the cap from $60 million to $100 million that rural hospitals could earn from individual or corporate tax credits.

Kemp criticized his opponent, Democrat Stacey Abrams, for her support of expanding the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

“There is a clear contrast in this race, especially when it comes to health care,” Kemp said. “If you like high-sky insurance premiums, if you enjoy driving or waiting for hours to see a doctor, if you want to pay more but get less, then you should vote for my opponent.”

“If you want innovation and market-based solutions, if you want lower costs and better coverage, if you want folks with pre-existing conditions to have access to affordable, quality care, then I humbly ask for your vote.”

Kemp also campaigned in Pickens County, according to Fetch Your News.

Georgia Governor candidate Brian Kemp stopped at the Appalachian Gun, Pawn, and Range to visit locals and connect with Georgians during his campaign.

Kemp stated about the tour, “We’ve been having to really work hard on our fundraising to offset the billionaires in California and New York that are funding my opponent’s campaign. We’ve done that. Now, we’re hitting the road and we’re going to keep moving …”

Stopping into his Pickens location a little after 10 a.m., Kemp was joined by U.S. Congressman Doug Collins, State Senator Steve Gooch, and State Representative Rick Jasperse, who all spoke on his behalf at the stump speech. Additionally, State Senator Chuck Payne was also present.

Even local Pickens County Commission Chairman Rob Jones attended the event as he said yes he is officially supporting Kemp saying, “He knows where we are at, he knows who we are, and he knows what kind of support we’ve got here.”

Gooch welcomed citizens to the event and called for support for electing Republicans across the state offices, spearheaded with Brian Kemp’s campaign for Governor saying, “We all have to get our families, our friends, and our selves to the polls and elect these good conservatives that are running.”

The event turned out over 400 people to hear Kemp speak and support the campaign. One citizen, Dianne Traynham, said she was there because she was interested in what Kemp has said and his support for rural Georgia. She added that her daughter is a teacher and Kemp’s pledge to take care of the state’s teachers was a major reason for her support.

Donald Trump, Jr. will campaign in Georgia for Brian Kemp, according to McClatchy.

Trump Jr. will then head to Athens, Ga., that evening for a fundraiser to boost Brian Kemp, the GOP candidate for governor, who is running in a tight, high-profile race against Democrat Stacey Abrams. Tickets to the Kemp fundraiser start at $50 and go up to $1,000, according to another invitation.

Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle are also slated to appear at two rallies next week with the conservative student-focused group Turning Point USA: One on Oct. 9 in Athens, Ga., and one on Oct. 10 in Davie, Fla.

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources is accepting comments on Phase Two of the shoreline rehab plans for Jekyll Island, according to The Brunswick News.

Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah announced an agreement with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia to remain in-network for insured patients, according to the Savannah Morning News.

Brunswick City Council members deferred voting on changes to the city’s alcohol ordinance, according to The Brunswick News.

Brunswick city commissioners on Wednesday backed down from a plan to require restaurant servers and bartenders to apply for permits to sell alcohol.

Brian Corry, city attorney, told commissioners backlash on social media about the proposed permits — also called “bar cards” — “ranged from extremely negative to slightly negative.”

He also noted Savannah tried to impose bar cards a few years ago and the program was so onerous and “untenable” the local government there repealed the local ordinance earlier this year.

“The aim of this ordinance update is to take an old, antiquated ordinance and modernize it to encourage more businesses in Brunswick,” Corry said. “We want this to be a positive change more than a negative connotation.”

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