Political Insider blog 

AJC blog about Atlanta politics, Georgia politics, Georgia and metro Atlanta election campaigns

Closing arguments: Nathan Deal can’t resist a final shot at Jason Carter

  • 12:01 pm Thursday, October 30th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

Closing arguments in Nov. 4 general election campaign hit Georgia television today.

Early this morning, we pointed you to the final argument of Jason Carter, the Democratic candidate for governor. So we’ll lead this post with what Republican incumbent Gov. Nathan Deal hopes will be his final say in the contest.

Closers are usually upbeat, an attempt to give voters a reason to vote for the candidate. But Deal couldn’t resist a final shot at Carter:
Here’s the needle: “My opponent’s false attacks? Camouflage for his four years of no accomplishment [More]

A ‘gift year’ for Democrats creates a state in play

  • 5:47 pm Wednesday, October 29th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

No doubt, you want to know who will win next Tuesday. And because you are such a good and faithful reader, just this once I’ll bend the bylaws of the Grand Order of Media Conspirators and clue you in:

Your winners will be Johnny Isakson, Hillary Clinton, and maybe Kasim Reed.

Now, if you’re as sharp as I think you are, you’ll notice that none of these three are on the Nov. 4 ballot. That requires some explanation.

A few days ago at the state Capitol, I ran into a prominent Democratic state lawmaker and inquired about the state of things. She offered [More]

Kasim Reed steps up for John Barrow

  • 1:06 pm Tuesday, October 21st, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has absorbed some criticism over – that one fundraiser aside – his lack of engagement in Jason Carter’s Democratic campaign for governor.

But Reed appears to be well connected to the Democratic effort to save U.S. Rep. John Barrow, D-Augusta, one more time. A fundraising letter over the name of the Atlanta mayor includes these lines:

Friend, I know people ask a lot of you, but we’re pulling out all the stops for John. Georgia needs him in Congress. He comes through for us over and over again. Now he needs us to come through for him.

You might [More]

Only one-third of 183,416 new voters describe themselves as white

  • 9:28 am Tuesday, October 21st, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

The good news for Republicans in Georgia: Since March 1, 183,416 new voters have registered, according to Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

That’s a good deal less than the number many, including Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, have said is necessary for a statewide Democratic victory on Nov. 4.

The bad news for Republicans: Only one-third of those new voters described themselves as white. While they make up a much smaller portion of Georgia’s voting population, African-Americans – who provide a reliable base for Democrats – accounted for nearly 37 percent of new voters.

In 2012, whites made up 59 percent of the voting [More]

Republicans opt for cash, Democrats choose outrage in final stretch

  • 10:44 am Monday, October 13th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

With the clock down to 22 days and early voting underway, both sides are showing their final hands in Georgia’s two biggest races.

Republicans are displaying a large cash advantage in an effort to avoid expensive runoffs. The Super PAC called Ending Spending and the The NRSC, which committed $1.45 million late Friday, was hoping to throw its money elsewhere, at least as of mid-September when its first Georgia buy was coming to a close. Here’s the committee’s finance chair, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, as

The gist of the issue: The HOPE scholarship, as originally launched by Gov. Zell Miller in [More]

A bitter feud over ethics — and other hard-of-hearing stories from Perry

  • 10:14 am Wednesday, October 8th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

Perry, Ga. — In between the boos and cheers at last night’s wrasslin’ — er, gubernatorial — match, there was a particularly brutal exchange between Gov. Nathan Deal and Democrat Jason Carter over the ethics complaints dogging his first term.

It started when Deal was asked why voters should trust him to overhaul the ethics commission.

“The ethics complaints that were filed against me were heard by the five commissioners and they were dismissed as having no merit,” said Deal, who talked about his proposal to expand and remake the agency.

Then Carter jumped in:

Carter: “I find it almost amazing to say that [More]

Elections board says ‘no’ to Sunday voting in Macon

  • 8:00 am Friday, September 26th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

A Democratic push for Sunday voting in Macon went down in flames last night after a contentious meeting.

The Bibb County Board of Elections voted 3-2 to reject a Democrat push for Sunday early voting, with an independent siding with the board’s two Republicans.

WMAZ reports that Rinda Wilson, a Republican board member, called it a “partisan thing” engineered by local Democrats.

Armed with the fact-checks against Perdue’s ad linking Points of Light to terrorists — the latest verdict is “Pants on Fire” from our Politifact colleagues — Nunn delivers the counterattack direct to camera saying such “attacks are what’s wrong with politics.”

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Gov. [More]

Confirmation that Kasim Reed is helping Jason Carter

  • 10:36 am Friday, September 12th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

Hard evidence has arrived of Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed helping Democrat Jason Carter’s gubernatorial campaign. Our AJC colleague Katie Leslie passes along the invite for the fundraiser at the Buckhead penthouse of Peter Conlon, of Music Midtown fame.

Reed and Carter, for those just tuning in, have not been the best of chums.There will be three Sunday voting sites in DeKalb, according to the Associated Press:

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — DeKalb County elections officials have approved of three Sunday voting locations for upcoming general and special elections.

Officials said in a statement Thursday that in-person voting will be allowed Oct. 26 at the [More]

Kasim Reed rules out a 2018 run for governor

  • 8:48 am Thursday, September 11th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Over at 11Alive, Doug Richards reports Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed as saying he’s all but ruled out a 2018 run for governor – given that he’s a family man now with a wife and daughter to support.

From the TV station’s transcript:

Richards: You don’t expect to run for governor in 2018.

Reed: It’s not my plan right now. My plan right now in 2018 is to be in the private sector.

The question, as Katie Leslie — the AJC’s ear at City Hall — correctly points out, is the meaning of “right now.”

Reed also spoke about an upcoming fundraiser he’s putting together [More]

Kasim Reed on Atlanta Hawks turmoil: ‘Let’s not make it about race’

  • 10:54 am Monday, September 8th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said he was “offended” by the inflammatory email sent by Hawks owner Bruce Levenson that led him to put his piece of the franchise up for sale. But the mayor said the franchise’s attendance woes have a lot more to do with performance on the court than any other outside factor.

“I think people care about winning, and I think winning brings out fans more,” he told AM 680 on Monday morning. “I didn’t agree with his assessment, and I think there are a lot of counter-examples with that. Atlanta is becoming increasingly diverse … There is a very [More]