Political Insider blog 

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

Jason Carter’s wife steps up for Elena Parent

  • 12:20 pm Monday, May 19th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

The raucous Democratic race for state Senate District 42, a seat now held by the exiting Jason Carter, has been filled with unsubtle accusations traded by former state Rep. Elena Parent and Decatur attorney Kyle Williams.

This robo-call is the exception – click to listen.

Here’s the opening:

“I’m Kate Carter. I’m a Candler Park resident and a public school teacher, and I’m voting for Democrat Elena Parent for state Senate. Elena Parent fought Republican cuts to education funding and she fought to protect HOPE….”

Kate Carter never mentions that she’s the wife of Jason Carter, who has publicly picked no horse [More]

Former Gov. Roy Barnes steps into row between Elena Parent and Kyle Williams

  • 4:15 pm Tuesday, May 13th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

If you’re Kyle Williams, you’re feeling particularly lonely today.

The grand old man of the Georgia Democratic party, former Gov. Roy Barnes, is the star of a very tough robocall hitting answering machines in Senate District 42, which on Tuesday will pick a successor to Jason Carter.

Barnes treats Williams’ only rival, Elena Parent, as an incumbent: “She’s a progressive Democrat, and we should keep her.”

And the former governor slams Williams, a Decatur attorney: “Shame on her opponent….I hope you’ll join me in rejecting these Karl Rove-style dirty tricks.” Click here to listen:

The row began with a Williams mailer that lodged this [More]

Georgia’s new gun law and Jason Carter’s conundrum

  • 9:00 am Saturday, April 26th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Last week, two days before Gov. Nathan Deal signed into law the gun bill that has brought our state so much national attention, his Democratic challenger appeared before a friendly MSNBC camera.

After the inoffensive preliminaries, interviewer Chuck Todd raised a most delicate issue for state Sen. Jason Carter and his still-young campaign for governor.

When HB 60 passed the General Assembly last month, Carter was one of only four Democratic lawmakers to support the measure – and the sole Democrat in the Senate to do so. So why did he vote for a measure that puts more concealed weaponry in bars, [More]

Democratic Party has slight trust edge in Georgia poll

  • 9:06 am Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 by Greg Bluestein, Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

There’s lots to dig into from this State of the State

About 51% of whites polled said they trusted the Republican Party, and only 24.6% of whites trusted the Democratic Party. But 77.9% of blacks supported the Democrats, and only 9.3% of blacks backed the GOP. Hispanic voters, a fast-growing part of the Georgia electorate, were split, with 30.4% backing the GOP and 29.9% backing the Democratic Party. Almost 40% of Hispanics polled supported third parties.

The Democratic advantage is within the poll’s margin of error.

More interesting numbers: Gov. Nathan Deal is the most trusted Republican, with 16.7 percent tapping him. [More]

Atlanta Braves tighten gun policy at Turner Field

  • 10:06 am Thursday, April 17th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy, Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway

Sure, they can do this in Atlanta. The question is whether it will fly in Cobb County. From Channel 2 Action News:

Here’s the quick recap from the Associated Press:

The Atlanta Braves will no longer allow some off-duty police officers to carry guns at Turner Field, which has prompted objections.

Under the team’s new policy, off-duty officers from jurisdictions that don’t include Turner Field will no longer be allowed to bring firearms into the stadium.

Tyrone Police Chief Brandon Perkins tells WSB-TV that the policy change will make the ball games less safe, adding that “armed good guys stop armed bad guys.”

Jerry Henry, [More]

The effort to unseat House Speaker David Ralston

  • 9:54 am Thursday, April 10th, 2014 by Jim Galloway, Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

We’re picking up word that some cash is flowing through north Georgia in an attempt to foment revolution and the overthrow of House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge.

Consider the following paragraphs, penned by Debbie Dooley and Julianne Thompson of Atlanta Tea Patriots:

“Speaker Ralston killed the autism bill, the bill that would ban Common Core in Georgia, the religious freedom bill, the foster care bill, gutted the gun bill, gutted H.B. 707 that would help nullify Obamacare in Georgia. He also added $17 million in the budget to build a new parking deck for the new Falcons stadium….”

The missive is contained [More]

Michelle Nunn endorses Keystone pipeline construction

  • 10:14 am Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

 Michelle Nunn told volunteers for her U.S. Senate campaign gathered in Marietta on Monday that she would support completion of the fourth phase of the Keystone XL pipeline in the name of economic development and national security.

“I have a lot of friends who have different perspectives on Keystone,” Nunn said. “We need to continue to focus on green energy and finding sustainable sources of energy, but I do believe we should move forward with Keystone.”

The candidate also said she wanted to see a third, cheaper tier of health insurance coverage offered through the Affordable Care Act. “Obviously, there are trade-offs [More]

A campaign fundraising conundrum for Gov. Nathan Deal

  • 5:10 pm Tuesday, March 25th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

Democrat Jason Carter found himself in hot water last week over scrutiny of a fundraiser his gubernatorial campaign helped arrange before the legislative session’s end. This week, Gov. Nathan Deal is facing questions about donations he appeared to receive during past sessions.

Campaign finance records show more than two dozen instances since 2011 where campaign contributions to Deal were logged after the session’s start. Some were just a minute after midnight on the day of the legislative session’s opening, others were noted days or weeks after lawmakers had convened.

Since campaign finance law bars statewide office-holders and state lawmakers from accepting [More]

Stewing over Obamacare in the final days of the 2014 session

  • 9:00 am Saturday, March 15th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

The next four days at the state Capitol will determine how we talk about the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare, for the rest of the year in Georgia.

The only question is whether, on the cusp of a highly competitive election season, our GOP-controlled Legislature will let Democrats like Michelle Nunn and Jason Carter continue to simmer in voter suspicion of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.

What’s the alternative? Republican lawmakers could decide to throw themselves into the same stew pot. In fact, they’re poised to do just that.

Democratic vulnerability as a result of the Affordable Care Act’s rocky start was [More]

David Pennington: A ‘true patriot’ would back religious liberty bills

  • 8:30 am Tuesday, March 11th, 2014 by Jim Galloway, Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

Most Republicans in Georgia have shied away from

Pennington, who stepped down from the Dalton post last week to run a full-time campaign, said if Deal were a “true patriot” he would have supported the legislation. Deal and other Republicans ducked away from the bills after overwhelming opposition from the state’s corporate titans and other critics who feared it would allow private business owners to discriminate against gays by citing religious beliefs.

Said Pennington:

“Instead of standing for principle, he sided with big business. Protecting religious liberty is and will continue to be a priority of mine. As Governor, I will [More]