Election roundup: SPLOSTs and Sunday sales pass all over; ‘personhood’ loses in Miss. (Updated)

A smorgasbord of election-related items:

  • The extension of the SPLOST in Atlanta makes one wonder if any of these special sales taxes will ever go away. Here was a city whose schools were wracked by a massive cheating scandal by adults (and while the superintendent and many other administrators may have changed, eight of the nine board members who didn’t cheat, but also didn’t catch it, remain in place). Its mayor didn’t exactly campaign against it, but he did voice his opinion that the levy should expire to make way next year for a 1 percent sales tax for transportation. Notwithstanding some yard signs here and there, pro-tax supporters were also largely invisible. Yet the measure passed, 64 percent to 36 percent. No wonder politicians like this method of letting citizens tax themselves: The politicians still get to spend the dough, while washing their hands of the responsibility for raising taxes. Prediction: At least one of the jurisdictions where the SPLOST was extended will follow Cobb County’s lead and raise property taxes next year anyway.
  • A Champagne cork, opened a certain way, will go flying out of the bottle and make a loud popping sound as the pressure holding it in place is relieved. That “pop” you heard last night, most anywhere in metro Atlanta, was the sound of pent-up public demand for Sunday retail sales of alcohol being released. The AJC reported 33 jurisdictions as of 7:30 this morning where Sunday sales votes had been tallied. It passed in 32 of them, and garnered at least 60 percent of the vote in 31 of those 32. UPDATED at 4:35 p.m.: The measure actually passed in Forest Park; a voting machine malfunction caused the erroneous earlier report that it had failed. The latest tally is that the measure went 44-for-44 in metro Atlanta, garnering at least 60 percent of the vote in 42 of those 44 jurisdictions. State-wide, Sunday sales measures passed at an 82 percent clip.
  • From other states: I normally don’t go for the job-pilfering in which states offer incentives to companies to move their operations, in the name of job “creation.” But if I were the head of a chamber of commerce or state agency charged with bringing jobs to Georgia, I’d be mighty tempted this morning to splash out for some TV ads inviting Ohio-based companies to move here after that state’s voters defeated a measure to rein in public-sector unions. If those companies want to stay in Ohio, and keep paying for a bloated government payroll, that’s their prerogative. But if not…
  • In the two governor’s races elsewhere, as expected, Republicans and Democrats earned a split. Kentuckians kept their Democratic incumbent, Steve Beshear. In Mississippi, Republican Phil Bryant will succeed the popular but term-limited Haley Barbour.
  • Also in Mississippi, voters somewhat surprisingly rejected a so-called Personhood Amendment that would have declared a fertilized egg to be a human, with all attendant legal rights. It follows a defeat last year on a similar measure in Colorado. Personhood is part of the anti-abortion movement’s attempt to move the goal posts before it has even scored a major success in its previous goals. So, maybe we shouldn’t be so surprised they came up empty last night in Mississippi.

– By Kyle Wingfield

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68 comments Add your comment

Elmer Gantry

November 9th, 2011
8:29 am

I can understan why Sunday sales of alcohol was approved by the populace, with unemployment at historic levels, produce rotting in the fields because of no pickers and the threat of nuclear proliferation from Iran, no wonder the citizens want to be “sloshed” 7 days a week. Cannot blame you for that.

Call it like it is

November 9th, 2011
8:32 am

SPLOST voters are sheep Kyle. Facts mean nothing. Who cares that the teachers were corrupt, who cares the board is corrupt. They just want to be able to say that they voted for the kids. Doesnt matter that those overseeing the money are idiots.

Ohio, I expected nothing less. Those guys saw the pipe line being cut off. WSB, Welcome South Brother. Bring that business on down to us, just keep your current staff up there.

Beer/ So what, no big deal.

RPaul

November 9th, 2011
8:34 am

Whoever proposed the so-called “Personhood” amendment needs to be voted out as soon as the opportunity becomes available in Miss. Gosh… To Repubs, it’s great to try and protect life (except when it is outside of the womb, of course) but how does one even know what minute and day “life began” in the womb? Under Taliban-like laws like these, many women could be criminalized even for having heavy monthly cycles, among other health-related issues.

Republicants love to tell us about how they want freedom and how much they want the govt out of “our” lives until they get into power. Then they want to control every aspect of our lives, telling us who one can kiss and cannot, when one can buy beer and cannot, when and how one can have sex, etc. The American people will vote out all these frauds when their times are due.

Republicans = Democrats

November 9th, 2011
8:45 am

Hah! SUCK IT “christian” coalition. If you don’t want Sunday sales DON’T BUY ON SUNDAY!

St Simons - we're on Island time

November 9th, 2011
8:49 am

I love the smell of burnt con in the morning

god is a lie

November 9th, 2011
8:51 am

“Personhood” rejected surprisingly? Get your head out of your rear. That legislation as pure crap and you all know it. Georgians finally took a step towards getting out of the Stone Age yesterday and Mississippians prevented themselves from going back into it. This should be a wake-up call to Republicans everywhere that they need to start focusing on REAL issues.

Tancred

November 9th, 2011
8:56 am

“God is a lie” sure wears his atheism on his sleeve. Good to see. We need more atheists in general. Some states still don’t even let atheists hold any public office.

It will be great to be able to buy that bottle of wine or six pak of micro-brew for that impromtu Sunday get together…finally!

MarkV

November 9th, 2011
9:04 am

To me the most remarkable part of Kyle article is the effort to cheapen the rejection of the Ohio’s attack on collective bargaining. No mention of the will of the people, just a sophomoric mocking that those “job creators” might want to move to the states where the protection of workers’ rights is the weakest.

ByteMe

November 9th, 2011
9:06 am

voters somewhat surprisingly rejected a so-called Personhood Amendment that would have declared a fertilized egg to be a human

Why “surprisingly”, Kyle?

carlosgvv

November 9th, 2011
9:22 am

The anti-abortion movement is determined to overthrow Roe V Wade no matter how long it takes. I wish they would take all that energy and dedecation and work on caring for the unwanted children already born in America. They could help at getting children adopted, set up parenting classing for those who need them and establish new orphanages, just to name a few things needed. Instead, they demand women have babies they don’t want and then, once they are born, could not possibly care less what happens to these children. There is something seriously wrong with the mental state of these people.

retiredds

November 9th, 2011
9:22 am

When the voters vote for things that Kyle and his minions are for it is democracy in action. When the voters vote for things that Kyle and his minions are against it is “surprisingly rejected” or “makes one wonder”. I guess in Kyle’s view these voters must be just plain dumb because they don’t see it his way.

George P. Burdell

November 9th, 2011
9:28 am

Plenty of business has already left Ohio and plenty more will in the future. The measure was an attempt to stop the exodus and now it will continue or even speed up. Have you noticed how many cars with Ohio plates are sporting around in Hotlanta now?

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
9:36 am

ByteMe: Because the latest poll I’d seen suggested the amendment was favored by a plurality of voters (44%, I think), with 11% yet to make up their minds. But it was bound to be close; thus, the “somewhat.”

steverino

November 9th, 2011
9:37 am

I’m torn on the Sunday sales issue. On the personal side, I favor anything that serves as a barrier between alcohol and people. Just a personal preference. There are many reasons not to drink, no benefit whatsoever for me to imbibe.

On the professional side, I work at a 911 center. Alcohol involved incidents make up a large portion of the calls we handle, day in and day out. So I hesitate to ‘bite the hand that feeds me’, so to speak. Alcohol consumption often turns minor personal matters in to calls for law enforcement or EMS intervention. That’s where I come in. It certainly helps MY economy.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
9:41 am

MarkV: The Ohio measure concerned public-sector unions. It is directly a tax-and-spend issue. Like I said, if taxpayers, be they corporations or individuals, want to keep footing that bill, they’re welcome to stay. But I suspect a lot of them will want to join their former neighbors elsewhere, to whom Call It and Burdell alluded.

Call it like it is

November 9th, 2011
9:41 am

So bringing in beer sales on Sunday is a defeat to cons, really. I had no ideal that in the history of Georgia thru all the Democrat governors, mayors, senators, reps, that it was the cons all along that was preventing the sale, who knew. Amazing what you can learn in a blog.

Tancred

November 9th, 2011
9:43 am

Hey steverino. I agree that booze is more of a “problem” in our society than people want to admit. If all those drinkers just switched to grass, those deaths would drop significantly, yet it’s still illegal. Now THAT is crazy.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
9:44 am

retiredds: Where did I suggest the results were anything other than “democracy in action”? I explained the “somewhat surprisingly rejected” in my 9:36: Opinion polls suggested the measure would be close, but would pass. And don’t you wonder whether a SPLOST will ever be ended, if it wasn’t going to end at this time, given all the negativity surrounding APS?

Lil' Barry Bailout (Revised Downward)

November 9th, 2011
9:44 am

I’m with Kyle on the Ohio thing. If the citizens of that fair land choose to “Sandusky” themselves, that is their right.

BlahBlahBlah

November 9th, 2011
9:50 am

Don’t forget Dekalb county’s SPLOST “victory”. Criminal charges arose from the last SPLOST. Yet the sheep in the county blindly hand over a new pot of money to the (mostly) same people who failed to effectively administer the last SPLOST windfall. Pathetic.

Jerry Eads

November 9th, 2011
9:51 am

The Sunday alcohol sales war has certainly been interesting to watch for this far Northwesterner. You could always go to a bar or restaurant on Sunday, get as plastered as you want, then get in your car and kill a few folk. Haven’t figured out why the religious teetotalers preferred death on the highways. Seems to me to be far safer to let folks make their choices at a store, GO HOME and THEN do what they will. That’s logic speaking (silly me); I don’t actually know if the change in law will change behavior. It would be an interesting study to see if Sunday sales affect the incidence alcohol-related accidents.

Richard

November 9th, 2011
9:53 am

Score one for freedom. Way to go Georgia on forcing government out of your glass.

JF McNamara

November 9th, 2011
10:00 am

It was a bad day for Republican ideology. People in heavily Republican states were pro drinking, pro abortion, and pro tax. People in Ohio voted pro public union.

You might want a little milk and sugar in that Tea…

JKL2

November 9th, 2011
10:02 am

Beer Sunday! NASCAR fans rejoice.

Richard

November 9th, 2011
10:03 am

JF McNamara,

I don’t think anyone was pro abortion. They probably just felt a little uneasy about the prospect of a woman having a miscarriage that would trigger a police investigation and a potential murder charge.

Lil' Barry Bailout (Revised Downward)

November 9th, 2011
10:05 am

Haven’t heard from the Obozo receptacles on Ohio vote on their clown prince’s fascist health care power grab.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
10:15 am

JF: I would not characterize the personhood movement as mainstream Republican ideology.

Bart Abel

November 9th, 2011
10:22 am

Regarding Ohio, If anybody thinks that Georgia can create jobs by cutting taxes to the bone while also allowing our infrastructure and education system to deteriorate, then I’m afraid that our high unemployment rate isn’t going to come down anytime soon.

While we’re on the subject of Ohio’s referendum, compare the quality of the education systems where teachers are unionized vs. education systems were teachers are not unionized and see how Georgia and other non-union states hold up.

Bart Abel

November 9th, 2011
10:25 am

Mitt Romney, the likely Republican nominee, has said that he “absolutely” supports a similar personhood amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Since all the other Republican candidates are to the right of him, I suspect that they feel the same way. Even “libertarian” Ron Paul is anti-choice.

In addition, while the Republican-led House of Representatives has done little to nothing to create jobs in this country, they’ve been extremely active passing anti-choice legislation.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
10:37 am

Bart: The House GOP says they’ve passed 22 bills this year that would help job creation. How many “anti-choice” bills have they passed?

carlosgvv

November 9th, 2011
10:45 am

Kyle, it may be that the personhood movement is not mainstream Republican ideology. But it’s getting closer every day.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
10:48 am

carlosgvv @ 10:45: Right, as evidenced by its defeat in a red state which also last night elected a Republican as governor, 61 percent to 39 percent.

Billings

November 9th, 2011
10:49 am

As always, the language in Mississippi’s personhood amendment was ambiguous. It left people wondering. When in doubt, vote no.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/31/opinion/mississippis-ambiguous-personhood-amendment.html

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
10:50 am

Btw, 61-39 for the GOP in the governor’s race would be almost exactly the opposite of the pro-personhood vote: The measure was defeated 58-42.

If you want to take shots at Republicans, the Ohio union vote is a much better target.

MarkV

November 9th, 2011
11:05 am

Kyle Wingfield @9:41 am

I know that it bill concerned public sector unions. What you are avoiding is the fact that the majority of the voters in Ohio support the right of those unions for collective bargaining. They are aware that the public sector unions are making concession to help the budget problems of the state. To argue (gleefully) that this issue would make private companies move elsewhere is both simplistic and insulting to those companies, which have some sense of civic responsibility.

JF McNamara

November 9th, 2011
11:13 am

Agreed that personhood isn’t mainstream Kyle, but the fringe has seemingly been controlling the party on all issues. Good to see some rationality. This is actually great news for Romney…

Bart Abel

November 9th, 2011
11:18 am

I’m not aware of one piece of legislation that House Republicans have created that would create jobs. Not one. I suppose they might say that their austerity budgets, such as the Ryan plan, would create jobs…or their legislation to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency or their efforts to bust federal government unions, but saying they passed legislation to create jobs and actually passing legislation to create jobs are two different things. As far as I can tell, House Republicans are actually blocking efforts to create jobs, I suspect, to help their chances in the 2012 election.

I’m sure there’s a more comprehensive list out there, but I found a Republican bill to imprison doctors who fail to notify the parents of minors who want an abortion; a separate Republican effort to cut off Planned Parenthood, ostensibly to eliminate government-funded abortion that doesn’t exist; a separate Republican plan called the “Protect Life Act” that would ban women from using the health reform law’s tax subsidies to purchase health plans that cover abortions (most health plans do) and of course the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act”, which redefined rape as “forcible rape” such that, for example, a 13-year-old girl impregnated by an adult would no longer qualify to have Medicaid pay for an abortion. I think there are more out there, but you get the message.

Kyle Wingfield

November 9th, 2011
11:20 am

So, Bart, it appears that you disagree with them about how to create jobs. Which is different altogether from implying they’ve been do-nothings on the topic.

Bart Abel

November 9th, 2011
11:31 am

I don’t know how others define mainstream, but Mitt Romney went on television and said that he would support a personhood amendment to the U.S. constitution. When a major Republican candidate says that on a major Republican news show to pander to the Republican base, then that’s mainstream enough for me…at least among the Republican elites and a large bloc of their voting base. It also gives us an indication of the kind of justices that Romney might appoint (or might not, since we’re talking about Romney).

http://www.concordmonitor.com/article/291284/romney-vs-personhood?CSAuthResp=1320855982%3Ac40rpgf61e57vv17fkm0q1am71%3ACSUserId%7CCSGroupId%3Aapproved%3AF2BA9BBFAC283943074FD99AC667BA7A&CSUserId=94&CSGroupId=1

Junior Samples

November 9th, 2011
11:37 am

Sure, say what you want about the cheating scandal in APS. But we will not make the kids suffer for the actions of the adults. We can replace the adults, but not the kids.

We voted for the kids, they are who we want to succeed.
Sorry if anybody out there doesn’t see it that way.

Bart Abel

November 9th, 2011
11:39 am

I don’t disagree with them about how to create jobs. They know as well as I do that their agenda isn’t a jobs agenda. Giving it that label is just marketing. If they’re good at anything, they’re good at marketing.

carlosgvv

November 9th, 2011
11:40 am

Kyle – 10:48

I’m betting there are no liberal Democrats in the personhood movement. Would you care to take that bet?

Hillbilly D

November 9th, 2011
11:52 am

The extension of the SPLOST in Atlanta makes one wonder if any of these special sales taxes will ever go away.

That’s why SPLOST elections are held in off-years, when they know few people will go to the polls. If success of your vote depends on low turnout, that ought to tell people something. (I’m speaking SPLOST’s in general and not Atlanta’s specifically).

the sound of pent-up public demand for Sunday retail sales of alcohol being released.

It was just as much, if not more so, a victory for the convenience store lobby, who pushed, over the owners of package stores, who were generally against it. The convenience stores were open on Sunday anyway, now the package stores will go to a 7 day week. Ain’t progress grand?

I normally don’t go for the job-pilfering in which states offer incentives to companies to move their operations, in the name of job “creation.”

The only winners in these deals are the companies that play one state against another, like a cheap violin.

Logical Dude

November 9th, 2011
11:56 am

kyle says: one wonder if any of these special sales taxes will ever go away.

There is a surefire way to make SPLOST votes go away. FUND THE DANG THING FROM GENERAL REVENUES. But that might take raising taxes, and NOOOOO the representatives are scared to do that. But look! People WANT to pay for good education? People WANT to pay for transportation? People WANT to pay for good parks and recreation?

If the State would fund these properly in the first place, then you just might be able to imagine the SPLOST votes going away. But with the State too scared to even completely do away with alcohol sales and left it up to local jurisdictions. . . not much progress will be made. (Local jurisdictions could still ban Sunday sales, but it would take a vote like yesterday to BAN the sale instead of ALLOW the sale)

Logical Dude

November 9th, 2011
11:59 am

Kyle: I would not characterize the personhood movement as mainstream Republican ideology.

But if it came up for a vote, would you be for personhood for embryos?

Logical Dude

November 9th, 2011
12:00 pm

evidently, trying to post a second comment gives me: Duplicate comment detected; it looks as though you’ve already said that!
Even though I didn’t already say that!

retiredds

November 9th, 2011
12:01 pm

Kyle, “democracy in action” is my editorializing. After all, editorializing is rampant in both the mainstream media (NY Times vs Fox News for example) and every blog on the planet. Politicians editorialize all the time, i.e. “it’s their fault”.Let’s just say that I might have chosen the best turn of phrase as it relates to your article, but the results of yesterday’s elections and votes on various referendae suggest the the polls do not necessarily reflect what an electorate decides once a voter steps into a voting booth. There are a whole lot of people you only hear from when there is an election and/or referendum. What we hear in the news is usually the conservative line or the liberal line that the shouters and screamers want us to hear. That is why 2012 will be a very interesting year because a large chunk of independent voters won’t tell the media what they think until it becomes history (i.e., the results). There are, I hope, some smug groups and politicians who thought yesterday’s results would be different and now they will need to go back to their spin machines to rustle up their bases for the next round.

retiredds

November 9th, 2011
12:03 pm

Last post this line should read: “Let’s just say that I might not have chosen the best turn of phrase as it relates to your article….

Jefferson

November 9th, 2011
12:03 pm

Typical GOP shortside views.

Beverly Fraud

November 9th, 2011
12:09 pm

When you look at example after example of waste and mismanagement, rejoice. When you look at example after example of abysmal test scores, rejoice some more. When you look at example after example of good teachers who finally got fed up with bureaucratic incompetence and left; and example after example of incompetent teachers who remain because of their church/sorority/fraternity connections allow them to do so, remember one thing:

You sent a message that you APPROVE of the school boards of APS, and DCSS. You approve of the people who endorsed Crawford Lewis and Beverly Hall. YOU did that with your vote.

Therefore, celebrate and relish the fact that you are getting the bloated, dysfunctional, abysmal school systems you RICHLY and FULLY deserve.