Latest poll: School superintendent race close in GOP; Martin leads Dems, but run-off is possible

For political junkies, here is a new poll that shows Roy Barnes coasting to victory next month and John Oxendine in a possible run-off with Karen Handel or Nathan Deal although he has twice their numbers  at this point.

The poll also shows a too-close-to-call race in the GOP primary for school superintendent and Joe Martin in the lead in the Democratic side. (The poll says Martin — with 40 percent of the votes now — could be in a run-off with either of the two Democrats, suggesting that Brian Westlake and Beth Farokhi need to focus on each other. Undecideds in the race are 30 percent. )

Take a look. I am surprised at some of the low numbers for some of the gubernatorial candidates. The poll suggests that this a race between Barnes and Oxendine. I think we know what education will look like under Barnes because he has a track record. I have no idea what education would like under Oxendine.

Do you?

38 comments Add your comment

Easy answer

June 23rd, 2010
12:23 pm

Yes education under Barnes will take a different road that education under Ox, but they will lead to the same destination: the bottom of the barrel.

The reason? You can no more effectively deal with education in Georgia without addressing discipline, than you effectively deal with Afghanistan without addressing the Taliban.

Happy Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
12:55 pm

Interesting refresher:

http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2010/01/11/governors-race-2010-john-oxendine-on-education/

I would be interested to hear more from people that know more about Oxedine, and from those that were teachers while Barnes was in office. It seems that the race will come down to who you believe more, which I’m sure will lead to some interesting discussion.

no-ox

June 23rd, 2010
1:21 pm

Under Ox it would be a complete disaster.

Easy answer

June 23rd, 2010
1:48 pm

“It seems that the race will come down to who you believe more, which I’m sure will lead to some interesting discussion.”

Happy Teacher, what that will lead to is sound and fury signifying nothing, because you can no more address education in this state without addressing discipline, than you can address the state of affairs in Afghanistan without addressing the Taliban.

Now if someone made them commit to what polices they would support that would lead to a direct, tangible effect on giving the classroom teacher more authority to hold students accountable for behavior and academics WITHOUT the fear of administrative retaliation, THAT would lead to an interesting and maybe even productive discussion.

What we have now is a competing impassioned pleas on how best to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic.

not a gimme

June 23rd, 2010
2:04 pm

have to say if Barnes is the dem candidate I (even being a teacher) would vote for him over any republican. The republican will tow the party line, remember they take an oath to the party. Barnes is trying to play nice with teachers but time will tell if he keeps his word to teachers this go around?

Lynn43

June 23rd, 2010
2:12 pm

I was a teacher when Barnes was governor, and I have been a school board member under the Republican reign. I can tell you that Barnes was fine compared to the destruction that the Republicans have done to education. Oxedine’s take on education is (I’ve been told) to send his children to private schools. There’s no problem with this, but if you are going to make decisions about public education, then a person needs to know something about and believe in the subject. I was a Republican until the last 8 years and did not vote for Barnes, but I will this time considering the choice.

Oxendine can't be trusted, more so than the others

June 23rd, 2010
2:15 pm

Oxendine can’t be trusted. Period.
Ask virtually any GA Insurance Commission employee who has had to put up with his leadership.
Ask them if they like having to answer the phones, “office of Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine”.
He treated the post as a stepping stone and used it for self-aggrandizement. Getting investigated for illegal activities will be a continual scenario.

Just like his last gubernatorial race, Barnes is “trying” to lose the current one with bad political ads.
Making promises that will not only scare most of the independent voters who might lean his way, but also Democrats. Saying something will “never” happen, not just under his administration but all future administrations is a stretch to say the least. Pandering to educators who should be smart enough to realize he’s saying whatever he can to suck up will not win over many educators or voters who are still deciding.
He lost the last race by being condescending to that little girl, “you have no voice”, and his wife looking elitist with the huge flower on her dress trying to look like a normal person reading to the child.
Poor, poor choice of media consultants.

Maureen Downey

June 23rd, 2010
2:24 pm

@Oxendine can’t be trusted, Given your doubts about both candidates, who would you support? Somebody has to be governor of Georgia.
Maureen

HS Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
2:26 pm

It is simple. Ox is a republican and will continue the republican path set under Perdue. That is the path of destroying public education in GA in order to push their agenda of vouchers. That is a continuing decrease in public education funding. That is a continuing discrediting of all teachers. That is the continuing increase in State DOE administrative jobs (read political fat). That is the increase in “testing” and “standards” that do nothing to educate our children except to absorb precious instruction time. That is the destruction of public education in GA.

This we can definitly and without question get from Oxendine.

What can we expect from Barnes? Honestly, whatever it is can only be an improvement over the republican control that GA has experience that last so-many years.

HS Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
2:27 pm

@Maureen – As usual, I am forced to vote for the lesser of the evils. My vote goes to Barnes or ANY democrat over ANY republican.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by . said: [...]

12 Year Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
3:46 pm

There will be more educational and academic freedom under Oxendine. Barnes supports Sonny-style merit pay. In fact, he thought of it first. Oxendine opposes it. Barnes’ apology was a ruse. As a teacher, I find it insulting that people seem to think that I base my vote solely on a candidate’s stance on education issues. I am a much more complete person than that. Oxendine’s stance on all the issues mirrors my own far better than Barnes’.

Bubba

June 23rd, 2010
4:31 pm

Oxendine would complete the destruction of public education in Georgia, and with it would destroy the future competitiveness of the Georgia work force and economy.

claire

June 23rd, 2010
4:35 pm

Oxedine = same as Sonny

Cobb Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
4:42 pm

We couldn’t very well come out in support of Barnes because of his track record during his time as past Governor. However, we have agree not to endorse any Republican candidate while quietly supporting Barnes. It was reasonable and saved face.

MB

June 23rd, 2010
4:55 pm

As 12 Year notes, you have to look at more than education, and I haven’t heard anyone give me a convincing reason Oxendine would be positive for Georgia in any area. In fact, folks I know NOT involved in the education arena (health care, business, government) with insight in these areas have said DO NOT vote for Oxendine. (Including some Republicans…) They note the same concerns that Ox Can’t Be Trusted and HS Teacher report – smarmy, prevaricating, whatever-it-takes-to-get-there character in the past – does NOT bode well for a tenure as governor.

MB

June 23rd, 2010
4:57 pm

And maybe if Barnes can’t win, the Democratic party needs to push another candidate to the forefront who stands a chance? If Joe Martin is the favorite for Dems, which gubernatorial Democratic candidate best matches those education goals and has the credentials to address economy, transportation, etc?

MB

June 23rd, 2010
5:15 pm

Ethical expectations?

http://blogs.ajc.com/georgia_elections_news/2010/06/23/ethics-commission-hearing-on-oxendine-remains-in-limbo/?cxntfid=blogs_georgia_elections_news

Oh, and he says he plans to eliminate state income tax in Georgia. THAT’s a reasonable platform, don’t you think? (TV ad) Especially when you consider that we also should expect a population explosion as another plan is to “use the state Constitution to put Planned Parenthood…out of…business.” http://www.peachpundit.com/2009/07/21/john-oxendine-use-constitution-to-put-planned-parenthood-out-of-business/

KW

June 23rd, 2010
5:27 pm

I moved here in 2006 so I don’t know much about Barnes, but I do know what Sonny and friends have done. So I will definitely say I will vote for ANY Democrat over ANY Republican.

I don’t trust any candidates that stress business as more important than education. They both deserve time, attention, and focus. I haven’t heard anything positive coming from ANY of the Republicans concerning education. That isn’t my only concern in the gubernatorial race, but since it’s my livelihood, it’s a huge chunk.

Dr. John Trotter

June 23rd, 2010
5:35 pm

I guess my friends now believe me when I told them months ago that DuBose Porter didn’t have a snowball’s chance in the Valley of Gehenna to survive. Four percent? About what I expected. Roy will no doubt win without a runoff. I certainly hope that he learned his lesson about teachers in 2002. I truly hope so. I hope that his second term, should he defeat the Republican nominee (Oxendine or Handel), will be a redemptive term as far as public education and educators are concerned. I was perhaps his most vitriolic and vocal opponent eight years ago (even drew the scornful wrath of the nice Jim Wooten when I called Roy “Redneck Roy” in a committee meeting where I spoke). I was p_ssed at him. But, I think he has perhaps learned that teachers are not expendable nor to be disrespected, especially after they put up with so much bullsh-t very day from crazy parents, incorrigible students, and spineless and abusive administrators. If Roy Barnes does win, I am willing to give him a chance. We are all human. The Psalmist said that God remembers our frame and that we are but dust.

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
6:02 pm

OMG TEACHERS, Are you on CRACK!!! Barnes was a disaster and a bully. He is the main reason Georgia public education is so crappy and has so much red tape. His cheesy commercials make me vomit. His ego is bigger than the gulf oil spill and more toxic- I was a teacher during the Barnes years and the red tape he added to facilitate anything is despicable. My sister is a financial official with a public school system in GA and told of numerous occasions where Barnes would cram it down the throats of local systems bankrupting and placing them in financial jeopardy. Purdue may not be Zell Miller, but the economic downturn has trickled down to all of us. For Barnes to make those ridiculous claims that he will not furlough teachers or cut their pay is ludicrous. Just look at him-he can’t be trusted.DO NOT VOTE FOR BARNES_ ANYBODY BUT BARNES GEORGIA

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
6:08 pm

OMG TEACHERS ARE YOU ALL ON CRACK!!!!! do you not remember what a nightmare barnes was????? Come on! He’s a megalomaniac, addicted to power and his ego drives him to this race, plain and simple- Anybody but Barnes He’s a liar, a cheat, a nasty man- period! Hire more teachers? Are you kidding me? He’s promising everyone 3 acres and a mule! Just wait until your taxes go sky high-You’re an idiot if you vote for him but Georgia has alot of idiots!

ScienceTeacher671

June 23rd, 2010
6:48 pm

Pretty depressing that Oxendine and Deal get such high percentages in this poll, considering their ethical issues. I’d vote for Barnes before I would vote for either of them, and I do remember King Roy.

Maureen Downey

June 23rd, 2010
6:54 pm

@Scienceteacher, I think it comes down to name recognition and people have heard their names. I thought Eric Johnson would have more traction, but I am not sure many voters pay attention to the General Assembly.
Maureen.
(Did you listen to the Barnes/teacher call today? I did. I will write it up, but it was pretty straightforward stuff. )

catlady

June 23rd, 2010
7:43 pm

I am not giving up on ANY Democrat besides Barnes. He has nothing to lose. I will never be able to vote for Oxendine.

Could we have a candidate with high recognition AND good morals? Or are they mutually exclusive?

HS Teacher

June 23rd, 2010
8:05 pm

Obviously, this blog was supposing that Barnes and Oxendine would be the 2 party candidates. And, this blog is about the topic of education – yes, there are other topics to consider when voting, but let’s stick to education. I feel that everyone would rather there be another choice.

No one trusts Oxendine. He would just follow Perdue’s footsteps to destroy education in GA. His reputation in his current position as Insurance Commis. isn’t very good.

No one trusts Barnes. He would likely NOT follow Perdue’s footsteps to destroy education in GA. His reputation from his Gov. days isn’t very good, but it is still better than Oxendine’s.

No voter can trust any political candidate – they all say whatever during campaign time to get elected. The only certainty here is that Oxendine has sworn to follow the GA republican platform and that is to destroy public education in GA.

Dislikes Republicans

June 23rd, 2010
8:12 pm

Education in Georgia WAS NOT destroyed under Barnes; Sonny and his Republican puppets did it all and Oxendine is nothing more than a thug and Handel is Sonny’s puppet. NO MORE Republicans.

td

June 23rd, 2010
8:42 pm

OK my question is: How is Barnes going to pay for his promise of not furloughing teachers, laying off teachers and giving them their raises? This all total BS and anyone that does not think so should not have the right to vote or for that matter are not smart enough to be in the classroom teaching our children. Education and Medicaid take up 70% of the state budget. Our states budget is 17.9 billion dollars this physical year. That means 12.53 billion dollars are being spent on education and medicaid,. Medicaid spending is 5.37 billion and will go up next year due to Obamacare. Education spending will be about 7.16 billion dollars of which over 1 billion is from federal stimulus money that will run out next year. Plus, teacher furloughs will save the state about 500 million this year.

So for Barnes to keep his promises he is going to have to find at least 2 billion dollars before raises and if you add raises it will be 2.5 billion. How is this going to happen? Shut down the rest of state government (State patrol, state parks, DFCS, Child support, public health)? This would find him the money but I do not think the feds are going to let him shut down some of these agencies. Raise taxes? I am pretty sure that the vast majority of the citizens would be against this idea and the Republicans will still control the legislature so you can pretty much believe this is not going to happen. BTW: at least 40 states in the country are in very similar shape so you all can not say Sonny did this to us. It is called a huge recession (probably closer to a depression).

So let me see, Roy lied to teachers once already and he is lying to you again now and some teachers still want to put him back in office? What is the old saying “fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me”.

RBN

June 23rd, 2010
9:38 pm

If this poll holds true, the choice will be very clear between Barnes and either Ox, Deal, or Handel. Teachers must work together and help him get elected. The alternative is four more years of cuts, cuts, and more cuts.

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
11:01 pm

td- you’re absolutely correct, but you know and if this blog is any measure of what’s to come- looks like it’s gonna be good ole boy Roy as GA’s governor – what a bunch of Sapps, no wonder teacher’s have such a poor reputation in GA- They appear to be stupid and gullible

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
11:01 pm

Enter your comments here

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
11:06 pm

td- you’re absolutely right on target- Apparently the teachers of Ga are stupid and gullible , no wonder they have such bad reputations among the public! They think this severe recession is Sonny Purdue’s fault and are oblivious to what’s going on in the rest of the country- OK teachers you’ll be the first to complain when he sticks it to you again, but keep walking around with your head stuck up your @$$!

Thurston Howell III

June 23rd, 2010
11:10 pm

td- you’re correct! Teachers are apparently stupid and gullible to elect Roy Barnes- no wonder they get such a “bad rap” among the public! They will be the first to complain wen he sticks it to them!

BABY SAY

June 24th, 2010
12:04 am

THURSTON- –BABY SAY U NED TU GIT A GRIPE….ROI GWOIN BEE NEX GUVNA…==BABY SAY DIS.

BABY SAY

June 24th, 2010
12:10 am

BABY SAY THIRSTUN BE POLITICK NI EVE IF HE NO REED DA POLICICK TEE LEEVS==TEEACERS NOT DUM999 U IS IF U NO SEES DIS. U AN UDDERS WEEL SEE ___ BABY NO MIS HIS POLICKAL CALLS. BABY SAY IT…..IT HAPPEN. WATE & SEE, T MAN…!!!

sgateacher

June 24th, 2010
1:15 pm

Democratic primary – Vote David Poythress – he’ll bring people together….unlike King Roy and his smoke-filled room of cronies. And by the way Roy has $40 million in reserve….This is absurd and we should be looking at where this money is coming from….

Thurston Howell III

June 24th, 2010
6:19 pm

BABY SAY, you’re right- lol

MARCUS CLEMENTS

June 24th, 2010
10:27 pm

The largest voting block in Georgia are school teachers and other educators and their families. Barnes and Oxendine had better be running to school teachers and seeking their help. Eric Johnson is definitely out of the race because of his open support of blanket vouchers. He ain’t gonna make it, however he is honest and open about his plans.