Political Insider blog 

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

A Super PAC’s off-beat, aerial campaign against Michelle Nunn

  • 2:52 pm Saturday, August 30th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy

Ending Spending Action Fund is taking to a different kind of airway to continue its million-dollar-plus assault on Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Michelle Nunn.

Tailgaters at the Georgia-Clemson and Georgia Tech-Wofford games today, and the NASCAR race Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway, will see the above message from the Super PAC, linking Nunn to President Barack Obama.

In addition, Ending Spending is launching a radio ad accusing Nunn of being an Obama “rubber stamp” and bringing up the Virtual Murrell fundraiser. It also bought TV ad time during those aforementioned events for full penetration of Georgia’s sporting inclined voters.

And the [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]

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]

A word from Ben Carson at VSU carries a $43k pricetag

  • 11:18 am Thursday, August 21st, 2014 by Jim Galloway

We know that getting a few words out of Hillary Clinton, a likely 2016 presidential candidate, can cost a group somewhere in the range of $300,000.

Dr. Ben Carson isn’t that expensive, but $43,000 for a night’s work is still a chunk of change. Even for a neurosurgeon.
That’s what Valdosta State University is paying Carson for a Sept. 11 appearance – billed as a non-partisan fundraiser, but attracting quite a lot of attention from GOP types.

We know all of this because Mark George, a former sociology lecturer at VSU, sent us the documents. He was concerned that Carson’s political inclinations – [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]

Jason Carter’s campaign seizes on economy in fresh attacks

  • 4:59 pm Wednesday, August 20th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

Democrat Jason Carter’s campaign has undergone a distinct messaging change this week in the wake of the news that Georgia’s jobless rate is the second-worst in the nation.

The Atlanta state senator has long centered his message on the need to better fund education and pounced on each flare-up in the ethics case swirling around Gov. Nathan Deal. But his campaign has unleashed a three-day blitz attacking the Republican’s stewardship of the economy in the wake of the bad news.

He attacked Deal’s embrace of a “grab bag” of economic policies on Monday and on Tuesday called for a new tax to improve infrastructure [More]

Morning of the gun: John Lewis says Deep South is doing it better than Ferguson

  • 8:58 am Monday, August 18th, 2014 by Jim Galloway

Weaponry, or images of it, seem everywhere this morning. We’ll start with the National Guard walking the streets of Ferguson, Mo.

From the Associated Press:

Gov. Jay Nixon said the National Guard would help “in restoring peace and order” to the St. Louis suburb, where protests over the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown by a white police officer entered their second week. Police said they acted in response to gunfire, looting, vandalism and protesters who hurled Molotov cocktails.

The latest confrontations came on the same day Attorney General Eric Holder ordered a federal medical examiner to perform another autopsy on Brown, and as [More]

Jason Carter on the ‘giant amount of waste’ to be cut in state government

  • 3:22 pm Thursday, August 14th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

State Sen. Jason Carter said tax increases to boost education funding would be off the table should he win November’s gubernatorial election. Where that money would come from has been a question that’s dogged his campaign to oust Gov. Nathan Deal.

The Democrat elaborated on those funding plans Thursday by calling for a review of government to expose what he expects to be a “giant amount of waste” in state spending.

“You see it throughout the government. Everyone knows that it’s there,” said Carter, an Atlanta state senator, after a tour of a DeKalb high school. “We have not done a true top-to-bottom review [More]

Nathan Deal goes to Vegas as rumors of Sheldon Adelson meeting swirl

  • 9:28 am Sunday, August 10th, 2014 by Greg Bluestein

Gov. Nathan Deal is in Las Vegas Sunday to address Republican National Lawyers Association. Left unsaid is whether he will also meet with one of his party’s biggest benefactors, Sheldon Adelson.

His team won’t confirm or deny whether the governor will huddle with the casino magnate or his representatives while at the conference at the Venetian Hotel, which Adelson owns.

But his allies have reason to believe that Adelson, who almost single-handedly floated Newt Gingrich’s 2012 presidential campaign, could chip in.

The billionaire has given tens of millions to pro-Israel groups over the years, and started a[More]

With $2.5 million TV buy, GOP can’t say Georgia race for U.S. Senate is a ‘gimme’

  • 10:02 am Wednesday, August 6th, 2014 by Daniel Malloy and Jim Galloway

National Democrats were thrilled Tuesday to see that national Republicans are going to spend early and big on the Georgia U.S. Senate race.

The news that theFrom a tactical standpoint, every dime the NRSC spends on must-win Georgia is a dime not spent on a state Democrats have to hold, such as Colorado. Of course, in the Super PAC age, outside money can arrive from anywhere at any time and in any amount.

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On the other hand, Kansas just made Georgia’s race for U.S. Senate a little more important for Democrats. Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) won his closely watched primary on Tuesday, [More]