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Jim GallowayJim Galloway

State GOP chair: Nathan Deal’s vetoes ‘fairly unpopular here’

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Oscar Poole (foreground) during last year’s Georgia Republican party convention in Athens. Hyosub Shin, hshin@ajc.com

Oscar Poole (foreground) during last year’s Georgia Republican party convention in Athens. Hyosub Shin, hshin@ajc.com

John Padgett, chairman of the Georgia Republican party, was on the horn this morning with Tim Bryant of WGAU (1340AM) in Athens, discussing this weekend’s state GOP convention in Augusta.

In a discussion of the gathering’s likely reaction to Gov. Nathan Deal’s vetoes of a “religious liberty” measure and a campus-carry bill, Padgett drew a distinction between your average Republican voter and a GOP convention-goer.

Deal, he implied, may be in trouble with the latter, but not the former.  Bryant has kindly sent us the audio. Listen here:

A quick transcript:

“I think the vetoes would prove to be fairly unpopular here at this convention.  You know, the Republicans in the state –the million or so who vote Republican every election cycle – are probably not as conservative as couple of thousand that come to the Republican convention, that are inside the party, having been elected to come here a grassroots around the state.

“It’s a pretty conservative group, and those two issues were very conservative issues.  With the veto, it just didn’t go the way that the people at the Capitol and a good portion of our base would have wanted it to go.

“The governor had his reasons for doing it, and he would tell you if you look at the polls, generally across the state, they were about a 50-50 [issue].  But I don’t know who they were polling.  I can tell you they were not popular vetoes here with this convention.”