Archive for the ‘U.S. House of Representative Race’ Category

Austin Scott’s divorce records remain sealed; Dec. 6 hearing set

It appears a decision on unsealing Republican U.S. House candidate Austin Scott’s divorce records will not be made until early Dec. 6, well after next Tuesday’s election, according to a report by 13WMAZ.com.

The website reports a Tifton judge denied the request of a Democratic activist to unseal the records on Scott and ex-wife Annette Jordan. The judge said they were not given enough time – 30 days – to respond to the request by Democratic  activist Amy Morton, who claims the former state legislator received special treatment when the records were sealed in 2004.

Judge Bill Reinhardt said he was aware of “the elephant in the room” — the Nov. 2 election for the 8th Congressional District seat — but said the law is the law.

Scott faces Democratic incumbent Jim Marshall.  Scott accuses Marshall of being behind the request to unseal the records.

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Georgia governor’s race could be headed to a runoff

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Sunday’s Insider column pointed to the possibility of a runoff in Georgia’s race for governor. 11Alive just provided some fresh statistical underpinnings:

With the general election just a week from Tuesday, a new independent poll from SurveyUSA commissioned by 11Alive News and V-103 Radio shows a commanding lead for Georgia’s Republicans in statewide offices, but it also shows an increased possibility of a runoff in the hotly contested governor’s race.

Democratic candidate and former Gov. Roy Barnes is up a small bit from our last survey six weeks ago, but the numbers indicate that Republican former US Congressman Nathan Deal is ahead of Barnes, 49 percent to 39 percent.

Libertarian John Monds, at 8 percent, Monday takes the votes of 1-in-4 independents and 1-in-6 liberals, potentially keeping Deal just under the 50 percent threshold needed to avoid a runoff, though support for third-party …

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Is the breadth of the tea party movement inflated?

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The Washington Post said it spent months trying to get a better understanding of the tea party movement, which has galvanized a large vocal segment of the electorate angry with Washington and what the say is the country’s downward spiral, and The Post has come to this conclusion:

[That the tea party is] “not so much a movement as a disparate band of vaguely connected gatherings that do surprisingly little to engage in the political process. …

Seventy percent of the grass-roots groups said they have not participated in any political campaigning this year. As a whole, they have no official candidate slates, have not rallied behind any particular national leader, have little money on hand, and remain ambivalent about their goals and the political process in general….

The findings suggest that the breadth of the tea party may be inflated. The Atlanta-based Tea Party Patriots, for example, says it has a listing …

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Confusing amendments on Georgia ballot explained

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Confused about the five amendments on the ballot next Tuesday? Voters may have a hard time weighing through the densely worded proposals, so AJC staff writer Steve Visser provides an explainer for each one. As Visser points out, the problem with amendments is the legal wording can make it unclear why the measure is being proposed and what it accomplishes. The five amendments:

Amendment 1: Making non-compete agreements more binding

Amendment 2:  Providing funding for trauma centers

Amendment 3: Change in transportation funding

Amendment 4: Allowing state multi-year contracts

Amendment 5: Allowing owners of industrial area property to get city services.

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Ballot measure for trauma would add $10 to Georgia car tags

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By Carrie Teegardin, AJC staff writer

Plenty of Atlanta drivers speed through the South Georgia segment of I-75 on the way to Florida’s beaches.

But they might slow down if they knew what some health care workers call that portion of the interstate: “the corridor of death.”  The stretch of road earned the name because people who get in car crashes in much of South Georgia are at least 50 miles from a trauma center – a hospital equipped to handle serious injuries.

Georgia voters will decide on Nov. 2 whether they want to add $10 to the cost of annual vehicle registrations to improve trauma services statewide. Hospitals, emergency services workers and public health officials say the $80 million that would be raised every year by passage of Amendment 2 is needed to save lives.

Everyone wants a fast response when they dial 911 for help, but selling the new $10 fee may be difficult. Some metro …

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1,900-plus serving in military file for absentee ballots

County elections offices have received more than 1,900 applications for absentee ballots electronically from military and overseas voters, Secretary of State Brian Kemp said this week.

Requests for absentee ballots in electronic format have come from Georgians stationed or living in approximately 45 countries in North, Central and South America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australia.

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New poll shows Republican sweep in top Georgia races

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Another poll shows the same expected sweep by Republicans on Nov. 2. The Landmark Communications poll has Republicans on top in the races for governor and four other statewide contests. Republican Nathan Deal beats Democrat Roy Barnes by 8 points instead of the 5 points found in the recent InsiderAdvantage/WSB-TV poll earlier this week.

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Republicans biting at Georgia’s Blue Dogs in U.S. House races

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If Republicans are successful in unseating Democrats in the 2nd and 8th congressional districts, they would essentially erase the “blue belt” that stretches from Savannah to Columbus and help return the U.S. House to GOP control, AJC’s Steve Visser reports.

The two strongest GOP candidates in competitive races — Austin Scott and Mike Keown — aren’t new to politics yet they can offer themselves to voters as figures who don’t represent the Washington political establishment. However, both have a knack for fundraising that makes them solid contenders.

Scott, who is giving U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall of Macon the political fight of his life in the 8th District, has served in the Georgia House for nearly 14 years. Keown, who is taking on longtime U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop of Albany in the 2nd District, is a former deputy majority whip in the Legislature. …

Evidence of GOP hopes for the state can be seen in …

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Lobbying becomes a booming business despite tougher rules for lawmakers

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At a time when the economy has most industries hurting, the business of lobbying is booming, reports AJC’s Bob Keefe in Washington. He reports that while Congress passed tough rules aimed at lessening the ways lobbyists can influence politicians three years ago, the money flowing to lobbyists continues, and among the companies making sure their voices are heard are Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Co. and Southern Co.

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola and its affiliated companies, for instance, paid Washington lobbyists about $6.3 million in the first half of this year alone — double what they spent in the comparable period last year, according to public records.

The rise in spending on lobbyists by Coca-Cola and its affiliates coincided with a rise in legislation that could have affected the company, such as a proposed tax on soft drinks, new school nutrition guidelines and environmental legislation affecting water …

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Will release of Austin Scott’s divorce papers make a difference in 8th District race?

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Will release of Republican state Rep. Austin Scott’s divorce papers make a difference in the tight race between Scott and incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall? Talkingpointsmemo.com reports a judge will decide Oct. 26, days before the Nov. 2 election, whether the documents should be released. TPM quotes Macon Telegraph columnist Charles Richardson in setting up the potential fallout in the District 8 race:

According to Richardson, what’s sealed in the divorce records is potentially damning for Scott. In a recent radio appearance on WMAC-AM in Georgia, Richardson detailed what he said were rumors swirling of troubling “allegations” regarding “a restraining order” and “domestic violence.”

The columnist and editorial page editor at the Telegraph said the allegations had been swirling around political circles since Scott’s abortive campaign for Lt. Governor began.

For his part, Scott is unwilling to …

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