Political Insider blog 

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

Johnny Isakson to Michelle Nunn: ‘You can’t have it both ways’

  • 9:51 am Thursday, August 28th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., has a message for Democrat Michelle Nunn, who would like to become his colleague – and has hinted that she wouldn’t be a sure vote for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. ***

In yesterday’s post on citizen-journalist Nydia Tisdale, Attorney General Sam Olens and that weekend GOP rally in Dawsonville, we wrote this:

A county deputy was summoned. As we said, Tisdale is driven. She did not go quietly. Her screams punctuated the event.

“I’ve had a lot of things happen as a speaker…” state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler gamely told the crowd over the noise, to [More]

How a plan to keep a GOP rally off the Internet went awry

  • 6:28 pm Wednesday, August 27th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Last Saturday began very sweetly for Nydia Tisdale, citizen journalist.

She was at Burt’s Farm in Dawsonville, a private concern mobbed by tourists during pumpkin season, to point her video camera at several GOP candidates at the top of the November ballot.

They were scheduled to speak at the rally, which had been advertised as a come-one, come-all event.

Most journalists, this one included, are capitalists. We do what we do for money – and God bless the publishers who pay us. But there are those who write and operate their cameras for free, simply because they are driven.

Tisdale is one of those. [More]

Where Barack Obama can’t go, John Lewis will

  • 9:04 am Tuesday, August 26th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

Expect to see U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Atlanta, popping up around the South this fall to help turn out African-American voters for the midterm elections. “We can play a major role, especially in some of these southern states,” he said. “In the 60s, I was there helping people get registered to vote. I can go to North Carolina. I can go to Arkansas.”

The southern tour is largely focused on North Carolina and Louisiana — where Kay Hagan and Mary Landrieu are trying to fight off spirited GOP challengers — and it is unfolding amid renewed debate over race relations. Riots [More]

Drones are coming to Georgia. And they’ve got lawyers.

  • 10:49 am Monday, August 25th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

If you want to know where the future is headed, watch where the legal community goes.

The legal/governmental affairs firm of McKenna, Long & Aldridge, perhaps the most politically active entity of its kind in Atlanta – working both sides of the aisle, has a new Washington unit: An unmanned Aircraft Systems division.

The firm is now advertising a Sept. 23 seminar in Georgia that will include a look at what might be popping up legislatively during the 2015 session of the General Assembly.

Among the speakers: state Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black (think crop dusting) ; Brandon Beach, R-Alpharetta, chairman of the state [More]

Videographer ousted from GOP event, and Sam Olens speaks up

  • 9:15 am Monday, August 25th, 2014 by Jim Galloway and Greg Bluestein

As the top of the Republican ticket looked on, a Dawson County deputy on Saturday forcibly removed a screaming video journalist from a GOP rally for candidates, a website known as fetchyournews.com reports.

The venue was Burt’s Pumpkin Farm – private property – in Dawsonville. Virtually every member of the GOP ticket was present, including Gov. Nathan Deal and David Perdue, the U.S. Senate candidate. The event was advertised as public, and video journalist Nydia Tisdale sat on the front row, recording. Also on the front row was the governor and his wife, reports Brian Pritchard of fetchyournews.com.

State Insurance Commissioner [More]

Flipping Georgia’s races: New WSB-Landmark poll puts Jason Carter, Michelle Nunn at top

  • 11:13 am Saturday, August 23rd, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Early this week, we told you of a SurveyUSA poll, commissioned by 11Alive, that placed Georgia’s races for governor and U.S. Senate in terms that mimicked past post-2002 cycles.

In the race for governor:

– Republican incumbent Nathan Deal, 48 percent;

– Democrat Jason Carter, 39 percent;

– and Libertarian Andrew Hunt, 4 percent.

In the U.S. Senate contest:

– Republican David Perdue, 48 percent;

– Democrat Michelle Nunn, 41 percent;

– and Libertarian Amanda Swafford, 3 percent.

But now we have a Landmark Communications survey, commissioned by Channel 2 Action News, released only four days later, that essentially flips those results. But the survey tracks closely [More]

Last year’s federal shutdown looms in U.S. Senate race

  • 9:00 am Saturday, August 23rd, 2014 by Jim Galloway

What you and your many, many friends thought of last October’s two-week federal government shutdown could determine the outcome of Georgia’s race for the U.S. Senate.

If enough of you thought the face-off was a drastic but legitimate tactic to rid this country of the plague of Obamacare, and to restore fiscal discipline to out-of-control spending, or if you consider such interruptions to be the new normal, Republican David Perdue wins.

On the other hand, if you and your friends remember the closing of federal facilities and the idling of hundreds of thousands of workers (never mind the national parks) as inconvenient [More]

Michelle Nunn says she’s not a sure vote for Harry Reid

  • 10:18 am Friday, August 22nd, 2014 by Jim Galloway and Daniel Malloy

Details of Thursday’s U.S. Senate comparison shopping opportunity that saw Democrat Michelle Nunn and David Perdue square off During a rowdy Republican primary, Perdue was a prominent vote of no confidence for Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and his future bid to lead Senate Republicans. But Nunn argued that, immediately after the July 20 primary runoff, Perdue went to Washington, met with McConnell and “pledged to be a good team player.” (The source for said observation: Sen. Saxby Chambliss, who was in the meeting.)

Said Nunn: “The only team I’m playing for here is Georgia.”

The Reid issue is an ideological benchmark on [More]

David Perdue goes after Barack Obama, but Michelle Nunn targets Perdue

  • 2:18 pm Thursday, August 21st, 2014 by Jim Galloway

More coming later, but here’s a first word on the U.S. Senate confrontation between Democrat Michelle Nunn and Republican David Perdue, from our AJC colleague Aaron Gould Sheinin:

MACON — Michelle Nunn and David Perdue shared the stage together Thursday for the first time in their general election battle for the U.S. Senate, and both were itching for a fight.

But while Nunn, the Democratic hopeful, targeted Perdue, the Republican candidate focused his fire on President Barack Obama.

The forum, at the Marriott City Center here, was sponsored by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, and the questions from the audience reflected Chamber [More]

Ralph Hudgens: No longer an Obamacare ‘obstructionist’

  • 10:01 am Thursday, August 21st, 2014 by Jim Galloway, Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

Last year, when Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens said he would do Now, as for Hudgens. The state insurance commissioner told our AJC colleague Nicholas Fouriezos on Wednesday that he just got caught up in the heat of the moment last August:

“I spoke to a Republican group in Rome, Ga., and I said I was going to be an obstructionist, but I can’t be. I mean, I was talking to a Republican group and I was throwing them some red meat. …

“I’m not a fan of it. I don’t think it’s going to work. But there’s nothing I can do [More]