Political Insider blog 

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

The Bush family’s increasing role in Georgia’s Senate race

  • 9:48 am Friday, September 19th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

The powerful Bush clan is playing an increasingly prominent role in Georgia’s Senate race.

After George H.W. Bush

This morning, we received this statement from Jim McGrath, the elder Bush’s spokesman:

“President Bush believes America is heading in the wrong direction, and for that reason he also believes it is vital that the Republican Party regain control of the Senate. As he indicated he would do back in April, this week he made good on his pledge to endorse the GOP nominee – and to be very clear he is absolutely committed to seeing David Perdue elected to the U.S. Senate [More]

An utterly shameless, self-promotional plug

  • 11:06 am Thursday, September 18th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

On Wednesday night, former President Jimmy Carter hosted his annual town hall meeting to allow Emory University freshmen to ask him anything.  Which they did. According to our AJC colleague Jill Vejnoska, this question came about 20 minutes in:

Student: Out of all the newspapers that you read each day, which one do you find the most informative?

Carter: Well, I read three newspapers every morning. We don’t get newspapers in Plains so I read it on the Internet. And I read the New York Times, I read the Washington Post and I read the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. I think the Washington Post [More]

David Perdue doubles down on ‘terrorist’ charge aimed at Michelle Nunn

  • 10:28 am Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

On Tuesday, Neil Bush, son and brother of former Republican presidents, called on GOP Senate candidate David Perdue to renounce his accusations that Democrat Michelle Nunn “gave money to terrorists.”

“It really makes my blood boil to think that someone would make that kind of an allegation, whether it’s an independent political group or a candidate for office,” said Bush, chairman of the Points of Light Foundation established by Bush ’41 – who has endorsed Perdue.

But this morning, Perdue doubled down on the “terrorist” charge, with this new ad now airing on WSB-TV:

From the script:

Narrator: Michelle Nunn’s own plan says [More]

A first glimpse into Brian Kemp’s voter registration probe

  • 9:59 am Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

The targets will hold a noon press conference at the state Capitol, but this afternoon’s emergency meeting of the state election board will be Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s show – an opportunity to explain why he’s launched an investigation into the most prominent voter registration project of the 2014 election season.

The board will gather in Room 341 of the Capitol, one of the building’s largest meeting spaces. But the meeting won’t be livestreamed – you’ll have to be present to win.

House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta, one of the organizers behind the New Georgia Project, says she’s not sure [More]

Neil Bush denounces ‘shameful’ claims linking Michelle Nunn to ‘terrorists’

  • 6:23 pm Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

One day after Republican David Perdue pocketed the endorsement of George H.W. Bush in the race for U.S. Senate, a son of the 90-year-old former president denounced as “shameful” and “disrespectful” Perdue-endorsed claims that a Bush-established foundation once headed by Democratic rival Michelle Nunn “gave money to organizations linked to terrorists.”

The charge is contained in a 30-second TV spot paid for by the National Republican Senatorial Committee and approved by Perdue, now airing on television stations across the state.

“That’s ridiculous,” said Neil Bush, the 59-year-old chairman of the Points of Light Foundation, in an exclusive phone interview with The Atlanta [More]

Top Democratic candidates a no-show at Obama’s Atlanta arrival

  • 3:18 pm Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

A host of Democratic dignitaries, including Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, were on hand to greet President Barack Obama upon his arrival here this afternoon. Missing from the tarmac: His party’s top contenders for higher office.

Gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter and Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn were elsewhere as the president landed to talk about his administration’s new

Gov. Nathan Deal’s campaign highlighted tweets Carter sent in 2013 welcoming Obama to town, as well as the Facebook post you see to the right. His spokeswoman Jen Talaber noted that he “doesn’t seem quite as excited to have his longtime friend” arrive now.

Carter spokesman [More]

A debate over education, and a Nathan Deal childhood mystery

  • 10:11 am Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

Gov. Nathan Deal and Democratic state Sen. Jason Carter meet at an education forum hosted by the Professional Association of Georgia Educators in Atlanta on Monday. Kent D. Johnson, kdjohnson@ajc.com

The event, the organizers insisted, was a forum – not a debate.

And yet that’s what Republican Gov. Nathan Deal and Democratic challenger Jason Carter turned it into – in front of members of the Professional Association of Georgia Educators.

Both were featured speaker at Michelle Obama’s get out the vote drive last week. But when her husband

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Over the weekend, state Rep. Dar’shun Kendrick, D-Lithonia, opened up a debate on corporal punishment [More]

George H.W. Bush endorses David Perdue as ‘independent voice’ in Senate race

  • 1:25 pm Monday, September 15th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

George H.W. Bush endorsed Republican David Perdue in the race for Senate today, following a weekend meeting at the former president’s Maine home.

The move is no surprise to anyone who has been watching the race.

Democrat Michelle Nunn has invoked her ties to the elder Bush in ads and campaign rhetoric. Earlier this year, the former president earlier said he wouldn’t Nunn said in a statement she is proud to have worked with the elder Bush and his son despite their party differences.

“That experience – running President Bush’s organization that helps millions of people improve their lives and their communities – is [More]

Three weekend polls put holiday runoffs in Georgia’s future

  • 11:39 am Monday, September 15th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

As the weekend began, a number of statewide polls surfaced showing a mix of findings in races for governor and U.S. Senate.

The governor’s race is a dead heat. Including voters who lean toward one candidate, 43 percent of likely voters back the Republican incumbent, Nathan Deal. Democrat Jason Carter holds 42 percent, and Libertarian Andrew Hunt brings in 7 percent.

In the U.S. Senate race, Republican David Perdue holds a small lead, at 45 percent, compared with 41 percent for Democrat Michelle Nunn and 6 percent for Libertarian Amanda Swafford, including leaners. Perdue’s advantage is at the edge of the poll’s [More]

Michelle Nunn pushes back, points to GOP support for ‘amnesty’ bill

  • 5:55 pm Saturday, September 13th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

The above ad for Michelle Nunn, the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, is on Georgia airwaves today, pointing to the oddity of a David Perdue ad, paid for by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, accusing her of supporting the “amnesty” bill supported by 14 GOP senators.

Note that Nunn brings U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., not Marco Rubio, R-Fla., into the argument. Not by name, anyway.

From the ad:

“On immigration, Nunn supports the same bill as the Chamber of Commerce and Republican senators like John McCain, putting 38,000 agents to secure the border. And Michelle Nunn spoke out against President Obama taking [More]