Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for September 4, 2020


Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for September 4, 2020

The Mayflower left Plymouth, England for a voyage to America on September 6, 1620.

On September 4, 1682, Edmund Halley first sighted the comet that bears his name.

On September 5, 1774, the Continental Congress convened for the first time at Carpenter’s Hall in Philadelphia; delegates attended from all the colonies except Georgia.

Scheduled steamship service first began on September 4, 1807, when Robert Fulton’s North River Steamboat began plying the trade on the Hudson River.

General William T. Sherman ordered all civilians out of Atlanta on September 4, 1864.

On September 7, 1864, General William T. Sherman sent a letter to his Confederate counterpart, General John Bell Hood, offering to transport civilians out of Atlanta for their safety.

President William McKinley was shot on September 6, 1901. He is buried in Canton, Ohio, not far from the Professional Football Hall of Fame.

Alonzo Herndon founded the Atlanta Life Insurance Company on September 6, 1905, one of Georgia’s great success stories.

The first supermarket, a Piggly Wiggly, opened on September 6, 1916 in Memphis, Tennessee.

Vince Dooley was born on September 4, 1932. Happy birthday, coach!

On September 6, 1941, Margaret Mitchell christened the cruiser USS Atlanta – Atlanta would later sink after being hit by 50 shells and a torpedo during the Battle of Guadalcanal.

The Heart of Atlanta Motel opened at 255 Courtland Street in downtown Atlanta on September 5, 1956. It included a three-story diving platform reached by spiral stairs and a pool large enough to hold a ski boat. African-Americans were not allowed at the Heart of Atlanta. [Photos © Georgia State University]

heart of atlanta

After passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which banned racial discrimination in interstate commerce, the Heart of Atlanta’s owner sued the federal government, asserting that the Act was an overly broad interpretation of the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution.

The resulting decision by the United States Supreme Court upheld the Act, finding that Congress was within its authority to ban racial discrimination in businesses affecting interstate commerce.

Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus called out National Guard troops to prevent the desegregation under court order of Little Rock’s Central High School on September 4, 1957.

The Professional Football Hall of Fame opened on September 7, 1963 in Canton, Ohio.

The Summerhill Race Riot broke out in Atlanta on September 6, 1966.

On September 5, 1969, United States Army Lieutenant William Calley was charged with murder in connection with the deaths of 109 Vietnamese civilians at My Lai. An Army inquiry listed 30 people who knew of the event and charges were filed against 14; Calley was the only conviction. Later, President Nixon paroled Calley. From 1975 to 2005 or 2006, Calley lived and worked in Columbus, Georgia, before moving to Atlanta. In 2009, Calley apologized for the events at My Lai while speaking to a meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Columbus.

Future Atlanta resident Curtis Mayfield saw his song, “Superfly” turn gold on September 7, 1972.

Here’s my favorite song by Curtis Mayfield, “People Get Ready.”

Former Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter returned to the Little White House in Warm Springs, Georgia, on September 6, 1976 to kick off the final phase of his presidential campaign.

On September 7, 1977, President Jimmy Carter signed the Panama Canal Treaty, which promised to turn over control of the canal to Panama by 2000.

Google was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin on September 7, 1998.

On September 6, 2014, USS John Warner (SSN-785), a mighty Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine, was christened at Newport News Shipbuilding. Big John calls Naval Station Norfolk its homeport. USS John Warner was commissioned on August 1, 2015 at Norfolk Naval Station.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Governor Brian Kemp is touring the state today to encourage Georgians to keep fighting the pandemic through the Labor Day weekend. From 11Alive:

According to a release, the governor will be reinforcing his message to do “Four Things for Fall” that will help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Those four things include wearing a mask, socially distancing, washing hands and following public health guidelines that have been issued by his office and the Department of Public Health.

According to the release, the fly-around tour will set out from DeKalb Airport at 7:30 a.m. this morning and head to Valdosta, Savannah and Augusta.

From WSB-TV:

Kemp did a similar tour just before the Fourth of July, urging people to recommit to wearing a mask, washing hands and practicing social distancing as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

“We have to work together to end this pandemic, and we can’t do it without your help,” Kemp said during his July tour.

The number of new cases appears to be dropping across the state, and the governor doesn’t want that to change over the holiday weekend that usually entails family gatherings to celebrate the unofficial end to summer.

From WTOC in Savannah:

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp will join Savannah Mayor Van Johnson for a news conference on Friday in Savannah.

According to the City of Savannah, the pair will “encourage best practices and adherence to public health guidance to slow the spread of COVID-19 ahead of Labor Day weekend.”

The news conference is scheduled to start at 10:45 a.m. WTOC will show it live on TV and stream it online.

From the AJC:

The governor warned that recent gains against in the fight against the disease, including a sharp drop in new coronavirus cases and the hospitalization rate, will be reversed if “people forget that we are battling an invisible enemy and, unfortunately, some let their guard down.”

“This progress can be erased very quickly if we grow complacent and ignore the guidance and public safety measures that we have in place,” he said. “Our state’s health and well-being rest on what Georgians choose to do over this Labor Day weekend.”

Gov. Kemp discussed the COVID-19 Executive Orders at an economic development announcement earlier this week, according to the Gwinnett Daily Post.

“There’s a lot of things that the public health state of emergency state of emergency allows us to do as a state, to have uniformity in many ways with what we’re opening, what we’re doing with the national guard in testing, a lot of funding type issues that we’ve been able to do and so I don’t really see that going away in the foreseeable future,” Kemp said. “Certainly not until we can get a vaccine or whether we reach herd immunity, or whatever that point is, and I couldn’t tell you whether that’s going to be in late November, January, this coming spring or next summer.”

Congressman Sanford Bishop (D-Albany) toured Fort Benning and said they’re adequately protecting personnel, according to the Ledger-Enquirer.

He visited Martin Army Community Hospital, watched troops undergo socially-distanced training and had lunch with the new commander, Maj. Gen. Patrick Donahoe.

Following his tour, Bishop said the Army post has put in place what he feels are “adequate protocols” to protect the trainees, those who are conducting the training and to protect the community from the spread of the virus.

“They have special procedures to meet the trainees in Atlanta at the airport, bring them in separate conveyances to Fort Benning, to isolate them, to test them as soon as they arrive, to quarantine them…and separate out those who may have a positive infection as they prepare to begin their military training,” he said.

The New York Times reports Chattahoochee County had the second-highest number of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people over the past seven days in the United States, as of noon Thursday.

Residents and soldiers in training who test positive for the novel coronavirus are counted among Chattahoochee County’s totals, officials at Martin Army Community Hospital and the Georgia Department of Public Health have previously said.

Bibb County public schools is offering meals for students during distance learning, according to the Macon Telegraph.

Georgia State House Speaker David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) has endorsed Congressman Doug Collins (R-Gainesville) in the race for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-Buckhead), according to the Capitol Beat News Service.

Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, handed Collins his endorsement Thursday in an announcement that characterized the four-term congressman from Gainesville’s conservative values as “like a tree planted by the water.”

“[Collins] and his family live those values every single day: a strong Christian faith, a tireless work ethic and a public servant who serves with honor and integrity,” Ralston said in a statement.

Likewise, Collins held a rally in Gainesville last week that drew attendance from former Gov. Nathan Deal, who has not yet endorsed the congressman but whose presence nonetheless created the appearance of a former Georgia governor lined up against Kemp.

Meanwhile, Loeffler has held a spate of campaign events since last week featuring Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr, and big-name Washington, D.C., backers including U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., and U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.

Black Lives Matter supporters interrupted an event for Senator Kelly Loeffler, according to the Forsyth County News.

A campaign event for U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., in North Forsyth was interrupted by Black Lives Matter supporters on Thursday afternoon.

About four individuals began chanting “Black lives matter” during Loeffler’s remarks at the Sawnee Mountain Park community building during a campaign event attended by several local officials and U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.

“There is no place for racism in this country. The life of every African American matters and is important. We have to root out racism wherever it exists,” Loeffler said. “That’s not what the BLM organization is about.”

Loeffler said the organization wanted to “defund the police” and “erode the nuclear family.”

One of the BLM supporters, Trinia Arnold James, then asked Loeffler whether she knew why those chanting “Black lives matter were protesting.” After some back and forth between the two, supporters of Loeffler began chanting, “Kelly! Kelly!” over the protesters, who responded by chanting “Black lives matter.”

The disruption ended the meeting, though some of Loeffler’ssupporters were able to speak and get pictures with her and Cotton as other members of the crowd continued to argue with the protesters.

I’m having trouble thinking of something that could help Loeffler’s campaign more than for this to continue.

From AccessWDUN:

A former state Senate candidate and one other woman shouted down Loeffler when she made a campaign appearance with U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton in a northern Atlanta suburb. The protesters began to chant “Black lives matter!” after one of them shouted questions critical of Loeffler’s description of Black Lives Matter.

Police refused to remove the women from the event, saying it was in a public park building.

The bigger disruption came hours later in Forsyth County, a suburban Republican bastion. The last words of Loeffler’s never-completed speech to about 60 people discussed her brush with Black Lives Matter, with her saying “I had to draw the line.”

“The left’s radical agenda of defunding the police is costing lives. It’s absolutely crazy. I’ve introduced legislation that would defund cities that defund the police,” Loeffler said. “But even more, I’ve stood up against an organization whose No. 1 goal is to defund and dismantle the police.”

[Eugene] Yu said later he had come to the meeting unsure about who he was voting for, but was impressed with Loeffler’s cool demeanor. “I think I will support her,” Yu said.

Senator Loeffler also campaigned in Hall County, according to AccessWDUN.

“That’s why I’m in Washington. I am your voice, you could always depend on me not to be politically correct, but to defend American ideals and values for future generations,” said Loeffler.

Loeffler made her remarks to a crowd of around 100 people at Smoke House BBQ in Gainesville. The stop was a part of her “All About Georgia” campaign tour, which began late last month.

Gwinnett County will not send out absentee ballot applications, according to the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Gwinnett County will not send out applications for absentee-by-mail ballots to the county’s nearly 600,000 registered voters.

The Gwinnett Board of Commissioners voted 3-2 against sending out the applications. The two Democrats on the board, Commissioners Ben Ku and Marlene Fosque voted in favor of sending out the applications. The three Republicans on the commission, Chairwoman Charlotte Nash and Commissioners Jace Brooks and Tommy Hunter voted against it.

“I was a little disappointed (but) not too surprised,” Gwinnett County Board of Elections and Registration Chairman John Mangano said. “It was going to be expensive for them to do that and it wasn’t part of our original budget request for the year.”

Glynn County Commissioners adopted a resolution against allowing voters to decide whether to dissolve the county police department, according to The Brunswick News.

Glynn County commissioners passed a resolution Thursday condemning a referendum on the Nov. 3 ballot asking voters if they want to abolish the police department and the state bills allowing the referendum to happen.

Echoing the language in a lawsuit filed last week to stop the referendum, Commission Chairman Mike Browning, reading from a prepared statement, said the bills “impermissibly seek to defund and abolish the Glynn County Police Department and force the transfer of county property and assets through an unlawful referendum and election process in violation of the Georgia Constitution and state election law.”

The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office will not allow gatherings of more than 50 people as a protest was planned against a Confederate memorial, according to the Augusta Chronicle.

“This applies to any group wanting to protest, for or against, with an estimated crowd above 50,” the office said in a statement.

“Discussions were held with the protest group, who were advised that permitting would be required to insure the safety of all parties,” the sheriff’s office said. “Accordingly, the protesters agreed to postpone said event to insure the safety of the community.”

The Augusta Commission is working on a project list for a Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) referendum previously planned for November but now moved to March 16 [presumably 2019?], according to the Augusta Chronicle.

Floyd County government computers are being brought back online after a virus infection, according to the Rome News Tribune.

The Savannah Morning News looks at the $2 billion dollar expansion of the Elba Island Liquified Natural Gas Terminal.

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