Republican nominee for governor Nathan Deal aims to get back on message today with the following TV spot aimed at metro Atlanta and points south:
Nathan Deal: The recession hit Georgia hard. Plants closed. People lost their jobs. Too many others fear they might. I’ll bring real prosperity to Georgia with tax cuts that create jobs. We’ll cut taxes on businesses that already call Georgia home. Incentivize private lending pools. And cut government red tape, so new businesses come here and bring their jobs.
Male voiceover:Nathan Deal. He’ll get it right — the first time.
Shannon McCaffrey of the Associated Press has this into-the-weeds look at the financial disclosures filed by GOP nominee for governor Nathan Deal:
When Republican gubernatorial candidate Nathan Deal amended his campaign disclosure form last week, he added some business properties to his asset column and increased the value of another property — boosting his net worth.
Now, questions are being raised about whether the correct property values were used.
The head of the state Ethics Commission, Stacey Kalberman, said Monday that candidates are required to use the assessed value set by county tax officials. Deal’s camp used a higher appraised value, which they said was set by a bank evaluating the property.
Last week, Deal listed his half ownership in a Metter, Ga.-based property owned by his Gainesville auto salvage business at $300,000, saying the entire 37.7-acre property in Candler County was worth $600,000. But local tax records show the overall property was valued by county officials at about $304,000.
Deal also listed his half ownership on business property in Gainesville as worth about $2.5 million, with the entire property worth just over $5 million. Again, local tax records value it as almost half. They show the total value for the three parcels of property which make up the salvage site is $1.2 million.
On Monday, Deal’s campaign referred questions to Tifton, Ga.-based accountant, Jimmy Allen, who said he believes the higher values are correct.
“I’m going to stand by the way I filed the form at this point,” Allen said.
Emil Runge, a spokesman for Deal’s Democratic opponent Roy Barnes, said his candidate used the most recent local tax assessors appraised value to list his property on his disclosure.
The higher values have helped boost Deal’s net worth, which is listed in the latest form at $2.8 million despite facing questions about his financial solvency.
Deal’s campaign filed a revised form with state ethics officials on Thursday, the second time in a week they had changed the document which provides the public with a look at candidates’ liabilities and assets. The Deal campaign acknowledged mistakes in the earlier versions and suggested that after 18 years of filing federal disclosures when Deal was a congressman they were not used to the state requirements.
Deal’s finances have been under scrutiny for several weeks after word that he is facing a Feb. 1 deadline to repay a $2.3 million loan for a failed sporting goods venture launched by his daughter and son-in-law. He also failed to disclose $2.85 million in business loans on the initial form.
Allen has maintained Deal is solvent and is liquidating an IRA to help pay the debt.
Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell is taking up the fundraising cause of U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop, the Democrat from far-away Albany:
I am writing you in support of my friend and yours, Congressman Sanford Bishop. Congressman Bishop is in the election fight of his career and he needs our help. I do not ask lightly – Congressman Bishop is a true Statesman and has delivered for all of Georgia – and we need to show him our support.
The Republicans have targeted Congressman Bishop and committed huge amounts of money to defeat him. Clearly, they’ve underestimated him and us. We will not allow their anger, rhetoric and divisive politics to drown out Sanford’s message.
Congressman Bishop needs our help today to ensure he has the resources to get his message out and win this race. There are 5 media markets that cover the 2nd district and he must compete in every one of them. The end of the financial quarter is midnight on Thursday – he needs our support to post big numbers to help ward off outside attacks….