Your morning jolt: Brian Kemp runs with governor’s endorsement; tea party leaders say no to GOP split

While there still may be some grassroots grousing about Gov. Sonny Perdue stepping into a Republican primary contest, soon-to-be secretary of state Brian Kemp is running with the endorsement.

He’s sent out this flyer aimed at GOP voters, asking them to join Perdue – and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, and soon-to-be House speaker David Ralston at a high-priced, pre-legislative fund-raiser on Sunday:

kempflyer

See the entire flyer here. Attendees to the fund-raiser are invited to spend as much as $6,100 on Kemp. What would Karen Handel say?

The former Athens state senator, of course, wasn’t Perdue’s first choice for the job. State Rep. Jim Cole (R-Forsyth) turned appointment down on Monday. This morning’s Macon Telegraph helps explain why:

Mercer [University] sent out an e-mail release just after 5 p.m. Tuesday that it would have “new administrative appointments in the Department of Athletics.

“News conference participants will include Mercer President William D. Underwood, Director of Athletics Bobby Pope and Mercer Athletic Foundation Executive Director Jim Cole.”

The Telegraph has learned the school will announce that Pope and Cole will trade positions this summer, with Pope taking a spot in the Mercer Athletic Foundation and Cole becoming the school’s athletics director. Calls to the cell phones of Pope and Cole shortly after the release was sent out were unreturned.

Republican Doug MacGinnitie of Sandy Springs remains in the race, and will have a first chance to confront the newly appointed Kemp on Feb. 6, in a debate hosted by the Georgia Christian Alliance, led by Sadie Fields. Yours truly is penciled in as moderator.

Forums for governor, attorney general and insurance commissioner are also scheduled. The all-day assembly (tickets are $25), is one of those must-attend events for any Republican – and even some Democrats – aiming for evangelical voters.

Ever since pollster Scott Rasmussen produced statistics last month indicating that the “tea party” name brand was out-polling the Republican label, GOP leaders have worried that the anti-tax, anti-government movement could produce a crippling split. And Demcorats have have been happy to stoke that concern.

This morning, Georgia tea party leader Debbie Dooley passes on a letter from a tea party consortium – the word “organization” would only aggravate the situation – that includes this:

Tea Party Patriots is issuing this statement in order to make it clear that we are not associated with this, or any attempts to form a third party. Additionally, we believe that such efforts are unproductive and unwise at this time.

The history of third party movements in this country is one of division and defeat. We believe that it is instead time for all Americans to rise up and demand appropriate reform within their own parties. The mechanisms exist for citizens to participate in their parties, and to drive their parties in the right direction.

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6 comments Add your comment

GOPActivist

January 6th, 2010
9:36 am

And the song stays the same. The corrupt looking after the corrupt. I hope Kemp enjoys his few days in office until the voters figure out he’s a hack. Voting for MacGinnitie, a man who has actually accomplished something in life.

Cutty

January 6th, 2010
10:16 am

At least he is wearing his flag lapel. That shows what a patriot he is right?

vuduchld

January 6th, 2010
9:58 pm

Brian Kemp is another no-nothing, do nothing dimwit your state cannot afford. Lived in Jawja 22 years so I know all about the idiot called Sonny Perdon’t. In fact, the way the state is taking it in the crapper right now only the dumbest of the dumb would run around parroting the endorsement of a clueless leader.

But, if this want you near-do-wells continue to want, I say go ahead, keep slithering to the bottom of the idiot state pile, you’ll soon overtake South Carolina. I’m so proud of you folks!!

Bumfuzzled

January 7th, 2010
8:48 am

I can’t imagine why there was not serious consideration in appointing Karen’s second in command with the agreement that such person would not seek election. That way the interim Secretary of State could be effective in their job for 2010, run a sound and impartial election (can Kemp do that??), not be distracted by their own campaign (will Kemp give his office at least 30 hours per week?), and the interim would be an invaluable asset to the winner and would thus gain not only favor but immense job security and respect. This is too simple, why didn’t it happen this way? More importantly, why isn’t there talk of it?

Diehard

January 8th, 2010
12:03 pm

People get in politics for two reasons: To do something or to be somebody. Brian Kemp runs to do something. The NFL is littered with first round draft choices that didn’t live up to expectations while lower round picks (read: Brett Fauvre and Tom Brady) lead on the field. Such will be the case here: Kemp is an all star and, unfortunately for Doug McGinnitie, he will need to find another position to play.

GOPActivist

January 11th, 2010
10:29 am

What a joke. Kemp is looking for a title and a paycheck. Why else would he keep sticking his name out there for every constitutional office in the state? Heck, he even wanted to run for Charlie Norwood’s seat before the field got too crowded and he got afraid he wouldn’t win.

If he’s anyone, he is Ryan Leaf. Sonny’s early round pick is going fizzle out quickly and quite embarassingly.