Four GOP candidates to debate in Gwinnett — Jeff Chapman, Ray McBerry left out

FreedomWorks and the Tea Party Patriots will host a pair of debates this evening in the ballroom of the Gwinnett Center on Sugarloaf Parkway in Duluth.

I’ll be moderating the 5:30 p.m. forum featuring the 7th District congressional race – though with seven candidates, “cat-herding” may be the better term. Send ideas for questions if you’ve got them.

A debate among the top four GOP candidates for governor – state Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine, former congressman Nathan Deal, former secretary of state Karen Handel, and former state Senator Eric Johnson – will follow.

The decision to exclude two candidates, Republicans Jeff Chapman and Ray McBerry, prompted tea party activist Debbie Dooley to send out an explanation this morning that included the following:

“They are polling below 2 percent two months out from the primary. We want to be focused on issues during this debate and not controversy. We feel strongly that two of the top four will go to a runoff and want to be able to fully discuss the issues.

“We did invite the Democratic candidates but they declined to participate. …

“We have very a favorable opinion of Mr. Chapman and he will be allowed to speak and will be attending the event.

“Beside the fact Mr. McBerry has been polling 2 percent for over a year, there are other reasons we decided to exclude Mr. McBerry.

“Mr. McBerry admits that he refuses to salute the American flag and we feel that is a slap in the face of our military…. We had activists contact us and say they would not attend an event that included Mr. McBerry….

“We have standards and criteria and Mr. McBerry does not meet our standards.”

Dooley pointed supporters to a set of links that addressed McBerry’s ties to the League of the South, and his relationship with a 16-year-old girl while a public high school teacher in Henry County.

Handel has said she will not appear on the same stage with McBerry.

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36 comments Add your comment

Eric

May 22nd, 2010
12:53 pm

League of the South members are right-wing militia nuts. Be very afraid of them. Some live down the street from me and I know how dangerous they can be.

Mr. Neutron

May 22nd, 2010
1:24 pm

Jim, you’ve made the wrong call getting involved with this.

These people are loons. Say what they will about Mr. Berry — who apparently isn’t afforded the “freedom” these people insist they defend. But Jeff Chapman is a veteran lawmaker (and a loyal conservative Republican) with a record of achievement. He has earned the right to speak at a legitimate gubernatorial forum.

Like so many of their “mass protests,” this thing is scripted for our entertainment. Kinda like wrestling. Shame on you, Jim, for throwing in with this crowd.

Mr. Neutron

May 22nd, 2010
1:24 pm

Oops, that’s McBerry. Sorry.

JanetReno

May 22nd, 2010
2:07 pm

Be sure and come for the Jerry Springer Show in the parking lot. The Branch McBerrians are putting on a Civil War Reenactment starring the girls of the Disney Channel. Admission will be five Confederate Dollars or two puppies.

necred

May 22nd, 2010
2:37 pm

eric, your ignorance is obvoius,,you dont anything about history or the LOS. The same bunch of parasites that supprt these atlanta business thugs are primairily responsible fo relecting the thugs year in & out You are afraid of anyone that will cut off the hand that feeds the parasites. Apparently you are anti constitution like most that exist in altanta area, Ray will school any of these thugs in states rights or Constitution. Your kind (and theres many) are the reason the liberals have the power to destroy this country.

Aquagirl

May 22nd, 2010
2:52 pm

All you have to do is mention McBerry’s name and his wackaloons show up. His campaign has tapped a rich vein of Bizarro World, populated by secessionists and people with whom you’d never leave your kids unattended.

whose next

May 22nd, 2010
4:33 pm

All you outsiders need to go home, You ruined Cleveland, Boston, NY, Philadelphia and all the rest of yankey land and now you’ve come down here to ruin the south. Delta is ready when you are.

R Atlanta

May 22nd, 2010
5:49 pm

I am a conservative and I never trusted these tea party people anyway. They showed their colors with this.

Tired of BS

May 22nd, 2010
11:27 pm

I think this is the way that most debates have been handeled as of late. The top 4 candidates are usually invited. Mr. Chapman I know nothing about…… Mr. McBerry, I know people who know him, they say he’s creepy. I’ve read everything I can find about him, he sealed his own fate by pursuing young girls.
This may be the south Ray, but people don’t take kindly to pedophiles here.

JanetReno

May 23rd, 2010
12:25 am

I am from Georgia so I have no intention of leaving. Frankly, you McBerrians are what give the South a bad name. Defending a man who prefers teenage girls is not a Southern thing, it’s a sick thing and with Ray McBerry polling so low after campaigning so long means that clearly most Southerners don’t want to reform the Civil War South.

deegee

May 23rd, 2010
8:57 am

Typically, the top 4 republicans turned the discussion into a crusade against illegal immigrants and their children. Nothing stirs up the base like a discussion about “them people.” It’s like throwing red meat to a den of hungry lions.

Georgia Super Voter

May 23rd, 2010
9:41 am

I kept hearing from several high end folks that Jeff Chapman was going to drop out of the Governor’s race. Why would you want to take time to have him on the podium if he isn’t even going to be in the race?

If there are children in the room, particularly young women, then I would not feel comfortable inviting McBerry.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 23rd, 2010
9:47 am

Just a little “googling” discovers that “the Tea Party Patriots” is “Freedom Works” is plutocrat Steve Forbes’ rebranding his “FairTax” plan, to enrich the rich, and, combining that with “astroturf,” phony “grassroots,” to con America just as his grandfather, B.C. Forbes did so long ago…helping the corrupt rich get richer at the expense of the American People and the Constitution.

Jeff Chapman’s going against closet-queen George W. Bush’s “good buddy,” Mercer Reynold’s attempt to steal Jekyll Island from the People of Georgia – where Forbes’ grandfather and the Robber Barons came up with their illegal money franchise scheme – the unconstitutional Federal Reserve System John Kennedy ended…before its false-elite, fascist plutocracy ended him to send us to die for the pope in Vietnam – marks him as the only “Republican” candidate for governor worthy of patriotic Georgians’ votes, barring the Democrats’ coming up with an acceptable alternative to the unacceptable Roy Barnes.

Filing Deadlines for Georgia Governor 2010 Election
Still thinking about running for Governor in 2010? It is still possible. Check out the filing deadlines below for the election and do what you have to do to support your candidate.
Filing Deadline (Major Parties): April 30, 2010
Filing Deadline (Minor Parties): July 2, 2010
Filing Deadline (Write-In Candidates): September 7, 2010

They’re coming for Georgia: proven corruption of Roy Barnes and proven corruption of the Gay Old Pervert party.

The People must restore its own sovereignty by making elect only those of proven integrity…probity. With his “language” on the issue of abortion, might DuBose Porter yet be, in truth, a friend and protector of those the power of Rome would enslave once more in Georgia?

This is our State and Our Country: shall we allow the Old Sectarian Order of king and pope, with its army of hypocrites, traitors, and perverts, to kill the Dream?

Who is of, by, and for, the People? Only that candidate is worthy of election.

gwinnettgirl

May 23rd, 2010
10:36 am

Wow people, get a grip. It was just a debate, not an attempt to take over the government by the Tea Partyers. I was there and it as a good and honest debate. The questions were taken from the audience (before it started) so apparently they were issues the people care about. McBerry and Chapman were not invited since they are polling under 2%. Not that I agree with that stance by FreedomWorks, but that was why they weren’t invited. Plus I believe they take issue with McBerry refusing to salute the flag. As we all should. Most of us know people in the military and find it insulting, regardless of his reasons. It has represented our great nation for over 200 years.
I thought they all did well, except Oxendine. Every response resulted in a campaign speech shouted out over the podium. While I agree with some of the things he says, I do wish he had talked to us in a reasonable way instead of campaigning at us. I walked away with a different opinion of him as a gubernatorial candidate than when I walked in. But I can also say the same for all of them I guess. That is the good thing about a debate, you get to see them in action as opposed to just reading their literature. If you weren’t there, then go to the next one. You cannot make an educated decision about such an important position without hearing and seeing the candidate in action.
The 7th district Congressional candidates was also a good debate. I didn’t change my mind on candidates though. I walked in thinking I liked Kirby best and walked out with the same opinion.

Don't Tread on Me

May 23rd, 2010
1:11 pm

Jeff Chapman is a 2-term state senator who chose to finish the work of his second term rather than to hop around the state raising early campaign money the way his opponents did. To have done otherwise would have violated state law. To now exclude him from a debate sponsored by a group professing to support character, honesty and integrity is hypocrisy at it’s highest, ugly form! Jeff Chapman is the best chance the People of Georgia have of ever overcoming “good-ol’-boy” government in our state. I have to question the motives of both FreedomWorks and the Tea Party Patriots of Atlanta. And I am proud to be able to say that the Tea Party of the Golden Isles is not affiliated to the Atlanta group.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 23rd, 2010
6:00 pm

Georgia’s Golden Isles is a far off paradise, so some “local information” would be in order: Gwinnett County is also “far away” from Atlanta…for now.

The “Tea Party” is a creation of Art Pope and Roman Catholic Sean Hannity, to “back up” once righteous America’s Hope, Barack Obama, now with plutocrat opportunist and Vietnam draft-dodger, Steve Forbes’ attaching himself, and his “rebranded” FairTax fraud for the rich, through his organization “FreedomWorks.”

It is nothing to do with America’s “New Jerusalem,” Atlanta, Georgia, where Black, White, Jew, and Gentile seek the ideals of America’s Founders, the American Dream, by obeying The Creed, subordinate to none but G-d (as in the Preamble of the Constitution of the State of Georgia), and particularly not subordinate to the fascist plutocracy’s “bi-partisan,” corrupt-banker/Vietnam draft-dodger Barnes/Gay Old Pervert, pincer movement to hammer all honest working Georgians.

Normal Georgia Citizen

May 23rd, 2010
6:40 pm

I guess this forum proves that we have nuts on and off the ballot. I am the only one wishing we had better candidates and sane citizens?

Wake Up

May 23rd, 2010
9:31 pm

The Golden Isles Tea party is led by Dawn Forbes, who is fiercely supporting Ray McBerry. It’s a shame that she’s lost all of her credibility, she’s done some very good work. Anyone that supports him at this point is just delusional. Have ANY of you done your own thorough investigating into Ray’s past? Instead of taking Ray’s word for it, or any media reports, investgate on your own. I have not seen a single person from Ray’s past that is not affiliated with the campaign come forward to defend him. You should demand a full employment history with references. The only official documents that have surfaced are court documents related to the young girl, and his two divorces. There are scores of people that have fled his campaign and back up all of the allegations, but Ray has produced no evidence of his innocence.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 24th, 2010
12:27 am

As should a “bishop” prove his character through righteous marriage in the New Testament, all candidates for “election” in Georgia should be able to demonstrate the same virtue and character.

“Birds of feather flock together,” and Ray McBerry belongs in the Gay Old Pervert party.

Many good people were duped into answering corrupt Ross Perot’s call to action…the “tea party” movement is no different. It is nothing but “astroturf” organized by fascists – the corrupt rich.

No doubt a few good people have been duped into joining in with its run-of-the-mill racists. Vietnam draft-dodger Steve Forbes is bankrolling it – his grandfather was the “journalist” who flacked for the criminal Robber Barons who created the Federal Reserve System to usurp constitutional money.

To overthrow the bi-partisan toryism which is ruining Our Country we need better Democrats, or a new party, to return to the whigism upon which Our Nation was founded.

Fire Eater

May 24th, 2010
4:52 am

Well, at least we don’t have to worry about Ray McBerry around your teenage SONS, unlike California and Massachusetts Democrats.

I want to know if any of our GOP frontrunners have condemned the recent appearance of Mexican strongman Calderon who demanded open borders and gun bans…all congressional Republicans did during his rant was sit on their hands.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 24th, 2010
7:03 am

Serve G-d or serve the Devil. Mark Foley is a “Republican” often feted at the Closet-Queen-in-Chief, George W. Bush’s White House.

Rome divides and conquers by getting “Fire Eater” to prefer a “heterosexual” pedophile to a homosexual pedophile unconcerned that “heterosexual” pedophiles are equally perverse…threatened by a woman of equal “power”…as if the broader community of citizens lacked the righteous to serve as Elect.

Rockefeller, after building Standard Oil, with the Bushes, on unredressed murder and arson, entangled us with Arab Islam which reveres Mohammed, who lusted after a five-year-old girl and married her when she was six. “Fire Eater’s” kind of “man.”

Babylon needs those fully perverse and compromised to “go along” with their evil. Hence the plethora of draft-dodgers in our political “leadership” so as not to make the sons of fascist plutocracy who “had other priorities” during Vietnam, “uncomfortable.”

Fire Eater
May 24th, 2010
4:52 am

Well, at least we don’t have to worry about Ray McBerry around your teenage SONS, unlike California and Massachusetts Democrats.

Bill Orvis White

May 24th, 2010
9:56 am

I wish they would have invited the Honorable Mr. McBerry. It sounds like it wasn’t fair at all. Mr. McBerry is the only one in this race who will fight for Georgia’s rights and the FAIR Tax.
The allegations against him are false and he will prove it. Ray is being railroaded.

Paddy O

May 24th, 2010
10:35 am

Will – you are a partisan hack. Why not address the fact that Obama still does not understand when he says “the federal government is at fault”, it is actually HE that is at fault? How do you explain the gross failure with the BP oil leak? At what point will the government take over sealing the well? When oil starts spewing out of the Gulf & landing on some nice slums in Tampa? Does Obama NOT know the capabilities of the NAVY he is in charge of?

Just saying

May 24th, 2010
12:44 pm

@ Bill Ray was not invited because he continues to poll at 2% or less and his refusal to say the Pledge and honor the American flag. These are not allegations but facts! The Manipulative Mr. McBerry was not missed. By the way who did John Linder endorse?

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 24th, 2010
12:51 pm

Paddy O – You “got me:” I am partisan for, by, and of, the People, sovereign – fully against toryism – the fascist plutocracy America was built to fight as a bastion for Individualism under G-d.

Partisan for The Creed by The Oath.

Could you, raised Roman Catholic, be any more of Rome’s “Divide and Conquer” mentality?

Did you not know Vatican banker John D. Rockefeller III was on Barack Obama’s original presidential committee? We have “the best gov’t money can buy” and Obama was merely the “lesser evil” or Bush and Cheney would have already been stretched at the Navy Yard.

Oh, yeah, blame Obama for British Petroleum’s gusher, 5,000 feet under water, owned by the “queen” of England, “Einstein.”

The “navy” we have tore the co-pilot’s seat out of John Kennedy, Jr’s airplane and disposed of his flight instructor after George W. Bush and his father’s JFK-killing crew blew up his plane in front of a dozen credible witnesses off Martha’s Vineyard.

You think the Navy can cap that well any quicker than BP?

If you aren’t just a “Fifth Column” moron…show them how.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 24th, 2010
12:51 pm

Paddy O – You “got me:” I am partisan for, by, and of, the People, sovereign – fully against toryism – the fascist plutocracy America was built to fight as a bastion for Individualism under G-d.

Partisan for The Creed by The Oath.

Could you, raised Roman Catholic, be any more of Rome’s “Divide and Conquer” mentality?

Did you not know Vatican banker John D. Rockefeller III was on Barack Obama’s original presidential committee? We have “the best gov’t money can buy” and Obama was merely the “lesser evil” or Bush and Cheney would have already been stretched at the Navy Yard.

Oh, yeah, blame Obama for British Petroleum’s gusher, 5,000 feet under water, owned by the “queen” of England, “Einstein.”

The “navy” we have tore the co-pilot’s seat out of John Kennedy, Jr’s airplane and disposed of his flight instructor after George W. Bush and his father’s JFK-killing crew blew up his plane in front of a dozen credible witnesses off Martha’s Vineyard.

You think the Navy can cap that well any quicker than BP?

If you aren’t just a “Fifth Column” moron…show them how.

Chief Wiggum

May 24th, 2010
2:56 pm

No blog commentary is complete until Will Jones makes his usual nutty appearance. Poor guy is obsessed with George Bush, and sees crazy, oddball links to Bush under every stone. Oh, that and the Roman Catholic church.

One good thing about Will Jones. In comparison, he makes most of the stranger commentators look completely rational and sane.

Wake Up

May 24th, 2010
3:31 pm

Ray McBerry is an excellent self-promoting fast talker, who dazzled his audiences with grandiose plans to defeat the federal government. History tells us this about Ray McBerry: He breaks his word, abandons those who care about him at critical times in their lives, cheats with impunity, and makes promises he has no intention of delivering. Case closed.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 24th, 2010
5:17 pm

“Chief Wiggum:” tory par excellence.

Tired of BS

May 24th, 2010
5:46 pm

Will if you had a brain I doubt you could pour piss out of a boot….. with directions on the heel. Wipe your brown nose now would you!

[...] was barred for other reasons as well, an Atlanta Tea Party organizer explained – including his refusal to salute the U.S. flag, and a relationship he had with a 16-year-old [...]

vladimir

May 25th, 2010
12:23 am

If gov’t takes over the BP oil issue – the hole won’t be fixed, and BP will shrug off any financial responsibilities for any damages incurred … just like you messing with your under-warranty jaguar before the warranty expires. … “Einstens!”

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 25th, 2010
4:45 am

Right, “vladimir.” It’s Roman Catholic “Big Oil’s” fronts who wish to shift the argument, to distract, “drag red herring” across the clear path to BP’s total and complete liability: Privatize the egregious profit from development of this G-d-given natural resource…and make public the cost of their screw-up. Never forget the First Edition of Ida Tarbell’s “History of the Standard Oil Company:” Big Oil was built by Rockefellers and Bushes on unredressed “murder and arson.” They’ve been ripping us off with assassinations and false war to shape government policy and line their pockets ever since.

They have an established corporate track record for skimping on safety and maintenance to make even more billions at the expense of their employees’ lives and the environment.

Ask “Qui bono?” should any but they be left holding this incredibly catastrophic “bag.”

E Pluribus Unum is our motto. “Big Oil” should be nationalized to serve the People, sovereign. Same as Big Insurance’s fascist oligopoly…that’s why the original term coined was “Public Corporation.”

for the USA

May 25th, 2010
5:08 pm

It was wrong to exclude Jeff and Ray. I knew Jeff before he entered politics. He is the one who can best be trusted to support true conservative values. I met Ray for the first time at a women’s club meeting. He made me feel “uncomfortable.” It was something about the way he looked. This was before I heard anything about the sexual accusations. I just didn’t feel right about him. Also he said two things that he had to back down on. He claimed to be the only one who had always been Republican and he was the only one supporting the fair tax. Anyone who knows anything about the other candidates know this if false. He admitted he was “mistaken.” I don’t trust him. Jeff is the best and should be heard.

April

May 26th, 2010
10:30 pm

Nathan Deal for governor! As a congressman, he had a very consistent conservative voting record, especially on illegal immigration. Check out his “report card” on http://www.numbersusa.com Also, check out other elected officials on the federal and state levels. You’ll be surprised that some of the people you thought were tough on illegals are very weak!

Randy

June 14th, 2010
11:36 am

It’s wrong to exclude any declared candidate that has campaigned from a debate. This is how the major parties control the voters. You will pick A or B because those are the choices that we give you.