Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 29, 2021

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Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 29, 2021

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.

On November 29, 1942, coffee rationing began in the United States.

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

On November 29, 1963, President Lyndon Johnson appointed the President’s Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy, referred to as the Warren Commission. Senator Richard B. Russell, Jr. of Georgia was appointed to the Commission.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Runoff Elections on Tuesday include Mayor of Brunswick, according to The Brunswick News.

The runoff election features Cosby Johnson and Ivan Figueroa, who earned the most votes among eight candidates in the Nov. 2 general election.

Figueroa said the city needs to continue its focus on economic development. He wants to work with the land bank to rehabilitate abandoned houses “and make them homes again.” He said public safety is his No. 1 priority and a goal will be to fill the more than 20 unfilled officer vacancies. He said the city needs to deal with its flooding problems and roads.

Mail-in and early voting has ended with a total of 492 votes cast. The city has nearly 8,900 registered voters.

There were 119 mail-in ballots requested and 84 were returned. Another 408 people showed up in person during the early voting period, which ended Nov. 24.

Christina Redden, deputy elections supervisor, said the last time there was a runoff for city mayor was in 2013 when Cornell Harvey was elected and an estimated 20 percent of the city’s registered voters cast their votes. Harvey was unopposed in 2017 and cannot run again because of term limits.

From WALB:

Wednesday was the last day for early voting in Albany. This is for the runoff election between Ward 3 Albany City Commission candidates BJ Fletcher and Dip Gaines.

There are a little more than 8,000 people who could vote in the runoff election.

Monday and Tuesday combined, the Dougherty County Elections Office said they had a total of 135 people come out.

Elections Supervisor Ginger Nickerson said they’ve mailed out 23 absentee ballots and have gotten 12 back.

City of Atlanta voters head to the polls to elect a new Mayor and other seats, according to the AJC.

The almost year-long saga to pick Atlanta next mayor’s comes to a close Tuesday, capping off a busy runoff period that saw candidates Andre Dickens and Felicia Moore circle the city for votes and seek to differentiate themselves through debates and public appearances.

According to GeorgiaVotes.com, nearly 30,000 people voted early in the Atlanta runoff.

A new 11Alive SurveyUSA Poll has Moore with a 46% to 40% lead over Dickens. Among the 59% who said they are certain to vote, Moore’s lead was 5 points.

Among the 13% of respondents who said they will probably vote, Dickens has the nominal lead, 35% to 30%. The poll suggests Dickens can win the race if he motivates enough “probable” voters to go to the polls Tuesday. 14% of voters were undecided.

The AJC and Channel 2 Action News last week released a poll showing Dickens at 42.6% and Moore at 37.2%. That poll was conducted Nov. 11-19 by the University of Georgia’s School of Public and International Affairs.

The Georgia Chamber of Commerce has endorsed the reelection of Governor Brian Kemp, according to the AJC.

The powerful business lobby’s endorsement came as Kemp faces pressure from both sides of the political spectrum. Former U.S. Sen. David Perdue is weighing a GOP primary challenge against the governor, while Democrat Stacey Abrams is expected to mount a rematch next year.

Chamber officials emphasized the state’s low unemployment rates and Kemp’s aggressive approach to reopening the economy during the pandemic with the decision to endorse.

“His positive working relationships with the business community and with organizations like the Georgia Chamber have paved the way for tremendous growth in our state over the last three years, making Georgia the envy of the nation,” said Chamber chief executive Chris Clark.

Kemp’s statement on Monday focused on his handling of the economic turmoil spawned by the pandemic, a strategy he credited with generating “record low unemployment and unprecedented jobs and investment” in Georgia.

Georgia’s members of Congress are split on the Biden infrastructure bill, according to the Dalton Daily Citizen News.

Georgia’s Democratic lawmakers in both the House and Senate voted in favor of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, while Georgia’s eight Republican representatives voted against the bill, which was signed into law Nov. 15.

“This historic, once-in-a-generation investment in our state’s infrastructure needs will create sustainable, good-paying jobs, address the growing impacts of climate change and help move our economy into the future,” said Sen. Raphael Warnock.

Republican Rep. Andrew Clyde, who represents the state’s ninth Congressional district that includes much of northeast Georgia, expressed disappointment with 13 Republican colleagues who voted in favor of what he called the “spending bill,” stating that only 9% of the funds would only be used for infrastructure.

“The vast majority of this bill is brimming with wasteful spending that advances radical Green New Deal policies, including billions of dollars for carbon capture programs, federally subsidized electric vehicle charging stations and zero-emission bus grants for intercity transit,” Clyde said in a statement. “At the end of the day, the bill completely fails to address border security infrastructure and to solve one of the worst supply chain crises of our lifetime.”

From The Brunswick News:

To Democrats like Rep. Sanford Bishop, whose 2nd District includes the cities of Albany and Columbus, the roughly $2 trillion social spending package now awaiting Senate action is a needed investment in America. To Republicans like Rep. [Buddy] Carter, the spending bills are bad legislation that will haunt generations to come.

“The Build Back Better Act addresses the challenges that families face today — from soaring prescription drug costs to needing child care as more and more families have all parents working to put food on the table,” Bishop said.

In addition, “This bill bolsters programs that train and bring more physicians and nurses to our rural communities so families can get the care they need closer to home,” he said.

“The Democrats’ radical wish-list is not fully paid for,” Carter said, contending the president and leaders of the U.S. House and Senate are being untruthful. “Instead, generations of middle-class Americans will pay for Biden’s agenda with higher taxes and higher prices at gas pumps and grocery stores.

“Our supply chain is crumbling. Businesses can’t find workers. Drugs are pouring across our southern border. And the Commander in Chief is swiping America’s credit cards and putting his legacy ahead of his electorate.”

United States Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Extreme Northwest Georgia) wants to award a medal to Kyle Rittenhouse, according to Fox5Atlanta.

Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene has nominated 18-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse to be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal.

The medal is the highest award from Congress and is given for distinguished achievements and contributions by individuals or institutions.

Greene’s resolution says the teen protected the city during what she called a “Black Lives Matter riot.”

From the Rome News Tribune:

“Kyle Rittenhouse deserves to be remembered as a hero who defended his community, protected businesses, and acted lawfully in the face of lawlessness. I’m proud to file this legislation to award Kyle Rittenhouse a Congressional Gold Medal,” Greene said in a statement published by The Hill.

Wayne Johnson will run as a Republican in the Second Congressional District, according to the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Businessman Wayne Johnson, a former senior official with the U.S. Department of Education, has announced he will run for the Republican nomination from Georgia’s 2nd Congressional District in the May primary.

“I want to go to Washington and work on the kitchen table issues that citizens of this district discuss as part of their everyday lives,” Johnson said in a news release. “Rural health care, family-wage jobs, senior care, support for farmers and a quality education for their children are important things that people care about and that I will focus on.”

Having been introduced to public policy in Washington by Sen. Johnny Isakson, Johnson, a recognized national expert in the field of educational funding, served in the executive branch as head of the $1.7 trillion Federal Student Loan program.

“I learned how Washington works and know it can be made to work better for residents of the 2nd District,” Johnson said.

From the Ledger-Enquirer:

U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop’s territory is still blue. But the Southwest Georgia district he’s represented for nearly 30 years is a little bit more Republican after GOP lawmakers finished redrawing the state’s congressional map earlier this week.

The map — approved by the state legislature Monday and awaiting Gov. Brian Kemp’s signature — had to give Bishop more than 92,000 new residents. The district was the most underpopulated in the state, according to the 2020 U.S. Census. Bound by the Alabama and Florida borders, the district could only move north and east.

Among the changes, the 2nd Congressional District picks up more of Columbus and stretches into northern Houston County, grabbing the growing city of Warner Robins.

Early drafts from state Senate Republicans made the 2nd even more friendly to the GOP, but those changes did not make the final map. Still, 45% of the district’s residents are Republican-leaning voters, and the proportion of Black voters will fall below 50%, according to demographic and mapping data maintained by online app Dave’s Redistricting.

The Savannah Morning News looks at the Savannah-Chatham County public schools’ response to social media threats.

During the week of Oct. 25, an anonymous social media post read that a student was tired of getting bullied and was planning to shoot 20 students and four administrators at 10 a.m. the next day. The post ended with six words: “I will see you in heaven.”

By noon, the multi-agency response team determined the post was a hoax and not a credible threat to students or faculty. Stacy Jennings, communications director for the district, said the post originated in Jupiter, Florida, and the student involved was arrested. Jennings said the case was being handled by local law enforcement agencies, GBI and the FBI.

School district Board of Education Police Chief Terry Enoch said the district partners with Sandy Hook Promise, which is an app that is monitored on a 24/7 basis by a crisis communicator, a school administrator, and the BOE Police Department.

Enoch said the district also partners with CrimeStoppers, which assists in routing threats and tips to the BOEPD.

He said the district’s police department is the main monitor of social media posts, but the department collaborates with local, state and federal agencies to track and monitor social media. Enoch said if a threat is made, it’s reported to the Georgia Emergency Management Agency and Homeland Security School Safety team, which works with GBI Fusion Center, or as it’s also known, GISAC, the Georgia Information Sharing and Analysis Center.

The Macon-Bibb County Industrial Authority is considering loaning $500 million dollars in bond proceeds to a recycler, according to 13WMAZ.

Monday, the authority will hold a public hearing on whether they should issue revenue bonds for the project. According to a notice of the hearing, the money will go toward purchasing the land and construction of the facility.

In June, Brightmark announced it planned to build the facility. In that announcement, the company said it planned to invest more than $680 million into the Macon plant.

The facility will be over 5 million-square-feet and bring more than 100 jobs in engineering, maintenance and operations to Macon.

The public hearing will be Monday, Nov. 29 at 11 a.m. You can access the meeting by calling the toll-free telephone number (844) 735-0635 and using the Zoom Meeting ID: 29315193#.

Statesboro City Council voted to adopt a moratorium on sign ordinnce variances while they work to revise the ordinance, according to the Statesboro Herald.

City Council approved the moratorium by a 5-0 vote Nov. 16 on a motion from District 5 Councilwoman Shari Barr, seconded by District 4 Councilman John Riggs. Unless extended by the council, the moratorium will end on May 16, 2022, said City Attorney Cain Smith. The council previously ordered a thorough rewrite of its Zoning Ordinance, including the rules referred to as the “Sign Ordinance,” with the help of a consulting company, and that work was projected to take up to 18 months.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will assist with some funeral costs for COVID victims, according to the Rome News Tribune.

While over 13,000 Georgians have applied, or began the application process, only half of those have been awarded assistance. As of Nov. 1, the state overall has been awarded $51,542,932 in funeral expense funds from the federal agency.

This assistance is limited to a maximum amount of $9,000 per funeral and a maximum of $35,500 per application.

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