Political Insider blog 

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

Michelle Nunn shifts to back Ebola travel ban as President Obama resists

  • 10:19 am Friday, October 17th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

The following came in last night from the campaign of Democrat Michelle Nunn, on the subject of Ebola:

“As we continue to gain new information about this horrible disease, our public health officials should take every precaution to make sure that it doesn’t spread. I support a temporary travel ban to affected countries in West Africa with an exception for military and health workers. Scientists and public health experts at the CDC are in the best position to guide our response to this crisis, but our leaders in Washington must provide clear, bipartisan and strong leadership as well as the resources [More]

Looking for a Democratic upset? The race for school superintendent has possibilities

  • 5:48 pm Wednesday, October 15th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Todd Rehm writes the blog known as GeorgiaPundit.com and is a Republican consultant who sometimes joins me in front of a TV camera. Michael Thurmond is the DeKalb County school superintendent and owner of a long Democratic resume.

The two men live in separate worlds and have never met, so far as I know. But they agree on at least one thing:

If you want to lay a wager on the Democrat who might be celebrating election to a statewide office on the first Tuesday in November, don’t place your money on Michelle Nunn or Jason Carter.

It will be difficult for [More]

Michelle Nunn and a post-princess defense against ‘terrorist’ charges

  • 9:00 am Saturday, October 4th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

If you want proof that we’re living out Disney’s post-princess era, take a look at what’s not happening in our race for the U.S. Senate.

Sam Nunn, the venerable former U.S. senator, on Thursday said you won’t find him polishing up his rusted armor and mounting his aged steed to rescue his daughter from GOP charges that she served as a banker for terrorists.

Michelle Nunn, the Democratic candidate for his old seat, has it covered, her father said. He pointed to a 30-second TV spot in which his daughter looks dead-on into the camera and labels the accusation from Republican rival [More]

Michelle Nunn’s new line of attack: Education

  • 8:52 am Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

Democrat Michelle Nunn opened a new line of attack in her Senate bid, saying her Republican rival’s support for dismantling the Department of Education could threaten middle-class families.

The nonprofit executive used a tour of a YMCA preschool center on the outskirts of downtown Atlanta yesterday to attack David Perdue’s platform, which she said would “eradicate” $1.1 bill in Pell Grants for Georgia students as well as millions in other programs.

“There’s a big contrast in this race for those who care and are invested,” she said.

Perdue has said the federal Department of Education should be abolished because it has failed [More]

D.C. Republicans’ ‘amnesty’ hit on Michelle Nunn attacks Marco Rubio’s bill

  • 4:01 pm Tuesday, September 9th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy

WASHINGTON — The most recent entry in the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s $2.5 million campaign against Democrat Michelle Nunn is on the topic of immigration.

Its math: Nunn + Obama = amnesty.

The problem: That “amnesty” was the comprehensive “Gang of Eight” immigration reform bill, co-written by possible 2016 presidential contender Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. It cleared the Senate last year with 14 Republicans in favor, including 2008 presidential nominee Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.

In other words: Nunn + Rubio +McCain = amnesty, too.

Rubio in particular worked hard in those heady days of spring 2013 trying to convince conservatives that [More]

Mitch McConnell — and David Perdue — promise a confrontational GOP Senate

  • 10:03 am Wednesday, August 20th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

With the prospect of taking over the U.S. Senate now in sight, Republicans are now thinking about what they’ll do with the car once they catch it.

More threats to shut the federal government down are a distinct possibility, suggests Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.In an extensive interview here, the typically reserved McConnell laid out his clearest thinking yet of how he would lead the Senate if Republicans gain control of the chamber. The emerging strategy: Attach riders to spending bills that would limit Obama policies on everything from the environment to health care, consider using an arcane budget tactic [More]

As border kids come to Georgia, Nathan Deal and Jason Carter clash

  • 8:45 am Friday, July 25th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

The screaming letter that Gov. Nathan Deal fired off to the White House was

Shortly after Deal’s office announced the letter, his campaign spokesman Jen Talaber sent out her own missive declaring the children are “victims of misguided federal policy implemented by President Obama” and criticizing his rival, state Sen. Jason Carter, for voting against an immigration crackdown.

Wrote Talaber:

“Where does he stand now that he knows the humanitarian crisis this has sparked? Does he think the Obama administration is handling this well? Does he think the administration should continue sending unaccompanied minors to Georgia without informing the state?”

Carter spokesman Bryan Thomas [More]

A hair-pin turn in U.S. Senate race puts the focus on Michelle Nunn

  • 10:24 am Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

Georgia’s first – and perhaps last – nine-week primary runoff concludes today. A hair-pin turn in the race to replace U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss is already underway.

Republicans Jack Kingston and David Perdue have thrown millions of dollars’ worth of insults at each other. Kingston has accused Perdue of consorting with the French. Perdue, on slightly firmer ground, has accused Kingston of being a member of Congress.

In Washington, The Hill newspaper has found someone willing to offer a highly technical assessment of the situation:

They’ve been beating the crap out of each other,” said Georgia-based Republican strategist Chip Lake, who [More]

Sam Olens on the hot seat over Holly LaBerge memo

  • 9:55 am Wednesday, July 16th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

Looks like fallout from an ethics probe that, years later, has yet to touch bottom will be the theme of the day.

Late Tuesday, Attorney General Sam Olens issued Said Olens:

“Our civil lawyers determined it was not responsive to the discovery request in the civil litigation.”

In other words, the whistleblowers’ attorneys didn’t ask the right question that might have prompted the memo’s release. However, Olens said he did advise LaBerge to turn it over when the feds asked for relevant documents.

Not everyone is buying into the attorney general’s distinction. “If you gave it to the FBI, why wouldn’t you give it [More]

Blowback for Tom Graves over role in House leadership election

  • 9:11 am Friday, June 20th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

On Thursday, Republicans in the U.S. House elected Kevin McCarthy of California, a business-friendly ally of Speaker John Boehner, to replace the tea party-slain Eric Cantor of Virginia.

The result surprised no one. But what caught many off guard was the man who nominated McCarthy at the closed-door meeting: Tom Graves of Ranger.

“I submit to you today that we cannot make good on the hope of America as a broken party. We cannot lead the way if we do not trust each other. As of late, there has been a lot of talk about holding our leadership accountable, as if [More]