With polls showing Donald Trump widening his lead in Georgia, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has a plea for Hillary Clinton’s campaign: Show us the money.
In an interview with Atlanta Magazine’s Steve Fennessy published this week, he said that the Clinton campaign’s six-figure investment in Georgia won’t be nearly enough to turn Georgia blue. And he said the state is closer to flipping than North Carolina, where Clinton and her daughter Chelsea are visiting three times this week.
Reed has long called for Clinton’s campaign to pour millions into Georgia. But with the election in six weeks – and a major campaign decision slated for as early as Wednesday – Hizzoner’s plea takes on a special urgency.
Fennessy: Georgia was thought to be in play at some point. Where do you see it?
“I think Georgia is in play, but Georgia cannot be won without a significant surge in resources that exceeds seven figures. Democrats can’t win Georgia without spending more than a million dollars.
Fennessy: What’s your role in all of this?
I see my role as being an advocate for my state. Georgia is going purple. It’s just which cycle? Everybody agrees that this is an important moment for our state. It’s why I’m hopeful we can get the resources that we need. I was at a meeting at the Clinton campaign last Monday. They’ll make the resource decisions for the final push probably on Wednesday or Friday of this week.
Fennessy: I’m sensing you’re frustrated [regarding the lack of resources in Georgia].
“No, I’m not frustrated. What you’re sensing is my approach to campaigns. We’re in a campaign that’s a real grind. Races like this are just like being in a real tough boxing match. It’s just unpleasant for 12 rounds, but if you do your part, you should prevail.
He also told Fennessy he’s not running for governor in 2018 and that he’s not open to a position in a potential Hillary Clinton administration, saying he sees the next few years “as the best time for me to secure the future for my family.”
The plan to make Attorney General Sam Olens the new chief of Kennesaw State University is inching closer to reality – but it’s not a done deal yet.
Two people with direct knowledge of the negotiations say it’s likely that Olens will ascend to the presidency of the Cobb County school, but both stressed the talks are ongoing. One of them added that the discussions hit a bumpy patch in the last two weeks.
Olens has stayed mum on whether he will step down this year to take the reins of the school, which has faced troubling financial questions that emerged just as the former president retired. The Board of Regents has declined comment, too.
Gov. Nathan Deal would select Olens’ replacement if he takes the gig, and a leading contender is economic development commissioner Chris Carr, who is a close ally of the governor and a former top aide to U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson. But his promotion does not seem imminent, judging by his status on the State Bar of Georgia website. It lists his law license as “inactive” but with good standing.
Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be on Capitol Hill today to testify about the state’s work to secure its election systems against cyber attacks.
Kemp is scheduled to be a witness in front of a House Oversight and Government Reform panel in the afternoon, along with a Department of Homeland Security official and several others.
The hearings comes a month after Kemp accused the Obama administration of hyping the potential of cyber attacks on the election system this fall, and he turned down an offer from the feds to help block such a threat.
The same day that Kemp is slated take the witness stand, the president of Georgia’s NAACP is scheduled to discuss the barriers people of color face at the polls at a separate event on Capitol Hill.
President Francys Johnson is slated to speak about what’s happening on the on-the-ground in Georgia at an event about voting rights with several members of Congress.
Read more here about why voting rights advocates are closely watching Georgia this fall, the first presidential election since the Supreme Court struck down key sections of the Voting Rights Act.