Archive for October, 2011

Your morning jolt: Herman Cain courts Georgia congressmen

With several glowing polls at his back, GOP presidential candidate and Georgia entrepreneur Herman Cain apparently thinks its time for his home state’s Republican leadership to take him more seriously. From Politico.com:

Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.) [said] that Cain – the former Godfather’s Pizza executive who’s been near the top of recent national polls – is coming to meet with fellow Georgia Republicans next Wednesday in his Cannon office.

“I’m looking forward to that opportunity,” said Gingrey, who is already endorsing Newt Gingrich. To date, Cain has not earned any endorsements in Congress.

While he scores well with local tea partyers, Cain has yet to obtain any endorsements from ranking leaders of the Georgia GOP. In addition to Gingrey, Gov. Nathan Deal and U.S. Reps. Jack Kingston of Savannah, Tom Price of Roswell, and Austin Scott of Tifton are still with Gingrich, the former U.S. House speaker. Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle has declared himself a fan of Texas …

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State lottery board study: Three casinos could bring nearly $1 billion by 2014

Three casinos in metro Atlanta, Savannah and Jekyll Island, equipped with 10,000 video lottery terminals, could generate nearly $1 billion a year for the state as quickly as 2014, according to a daring, 84-page report requested and received by the Georgia Lottery Corporation.

It may be the first time a state entity has, in an official paper, broached the possibility of establishing state-licensed gambling houses in Georgia.

The $91,000 study was quietly handed to Gov. Nathan Deal last week. Just returned from a trip to China, the governor has yet to review it, a spokesman said Wednesday.

Which means you can read it before the governor does by clicking here. (Journalistic compadres: You, too, can download the report. But please credit this newspaper.)

A casino industry representative browses through rows of new slot machines on display at the industry's G2E conference earlier this month in Las Vegas. AP/Julie Jacobson

A casino industry representative browses through rows of new slot machines on display at the industry’s G2E conference earlier this month in Las Vegas. AP/Julie Jacobson

In metro Atlanta, the report gauged the potential …

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Georgia fined Herman Cain $8k for failure to pay taxes

Four years ago, the state of Georgia placed an $8,558 lien on the Henry County home of GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain for failure to pay personal income taxes, ABC News reported today.

From the website:

Cain’s campaign was quick to point out to ABC News that Cain was undergoing treatment for Stage 4 cancer in 2006. A Cain spokesman said that due to his illness, Cain had requested — and was granted — a six-month extension of his federal taxes and had requested the same from the state, which Georgia allows.

Nevertheless, the state sent a delinquency notice to Cain in late 2007 and filed the lien in early 2008. Cain spokesman J.D. Gordon said Cain’s accountant had protested the delinquency to no avail.

The lien is for taxes in 2006. It was lifted in November 2008.

From Cain campaign J.D. Gordon:

”The experience serves as an example of how broken our federal and state bureaucracies are with respect to the collection of revenue. The entire process is driven by …

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Your morning jolt: A smokin’ Herman Cain ad flares

Like a smoldering cigarette, Herman Cain’s Internet ad had lain unnoticed for nearly a week.

On Tuesday, it flared. Exhaling a white cloud has once again become a symbol of rebellion. Not in an unfiltered, James Dean fashion. More of a style that shouts, “Get off my back. Medicare will eventually cover it.”

Cain’s campaign manager Mark Block takes up most of the 56 seconds. The GOP candidate’s smile – how does that grab you? – makes a cameo at the end:

The video was at once variously dissected as iconic, bizarre and baffling. Cain’s people rolled with it. Block on Fox:

“You walk into a veterans’ bar in Iowa and they’re sitting around smoking, and yeah, we are resonating with them. I’m not the only one that smokes in America for God’s sake. It’s a choice that I made, and was at the end of the ad,” he said.

But by putting the focus on Block, you also shine light on his biography – not the candidate’s. From the Daily Caller:

[Block] was also banned from …

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It’s official: Occupy Atlanta just got strange

On Monday, Occupy Atlanta went toe-to-toe with Kasim Reed in a City Hall press conference in which the mayor put the protesters on notice that they soon would be removed from Woodruff Park.

This evening, these same protesters attempted to arrange the levitation of the Georgia Pacific building — unless the Koch brothers, who own the building, remove all their money from Georgia politics. From Channel 2 Action News:

Oh, but wait. There’s more. 11Alive reports that Tim Franzen, the red-capped voice of Occupy Atlanta, has had a previous career.

From the TV station’s web site:

In a series of YouTube videos between 2006 and early this year, Franzen is on camera enjoys cigars in Miami, talking about the pillars of leisure which include dancing and conversation, and warning about managing money, that people shouldn’t spend so much money that their ‘handcuffed’ to their jobs.

Franzen is clearly the on camera star of the International Leisure Club, which also has a Facebook …

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Wright McLeod becomes third GOP candidate in 12th District

A third Republican formally entered the 12th District congressional race on Wednesday – carrying a good-looking resume and an endorsement that may have some punch.

12th District GOP candidate Wright McLeod

12th District GOP candidate Wright McLeod

Wright McLeod, an Augusta real estate attorney, on Tuesday filed his federal paperwork to begin fundraising for the right to challenge U.S. Rep. John Barrow, D-Savannah.

McLeod, a native of the area, is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Acdemy who flew F-14 Tomcats for 20 years, including 38 combat missions during Operation Desert Storm – the invasion of Iraq organized by George H.W. Bush. He’s also got a UGA law degree, and a masters in national securities studies from Georgetown University.

McLeod also has the endorsement of Gloria Norwood, wife of the late U.S. Rep. Charlie Norwood of Augusta. Which matters in east Georgia.

A statement by Gloria Norwood from McLeod’s nascent campaign:

“Wright embodies what it means to serve our country,” stated Mrs. Norwood. “I have …

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Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich pair up for ‘Lincoln-Douglas’ debate

It looks like the two presidential candidates with Georgia roots are teaming up. From National Review Online:

A group of tea-party activists in Texas will host a “modified Lincoln–Douglas debate” between Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich next month.

Bill O’Sullivan, the treasurer of Texas Tea Party Patriots, tells National Review Online that both candidates have confirmed their attendance at the forum, which will focus on fiscal issues.

O’Sullivan says the event, which will be held on November 5 at the Woodlands Resort near Houston, will also feature Rep. Steve King (R., Iowa) as an emcee.

No word on who will be Lincoln, and who will be the Little Giant.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

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Herman Cain continues high-altitude ride in CBS/NYT poll

GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain continues to fly high in national polls, as a new CBS/New York Times survey today has him “squeaking” past former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney:

Cain garnered 25 percent support of Republican primary voters in the poll released on Tuesday, compared to Romney’s 21 percent.

Former U.S. House speaker Newt Gingrich finished third with 10 percent. The surprise is Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who has deflated to a distant fifth – behind his Texas rival Ron Paul – at 6 percent.

***
Meanwhile, in an attempt to bring some academic heft to the debate over his “9-9-9” plan, Herman Cain has arranged for a friendly, Friday discussion of his economic policy via the American Enterprise Institute. The event will be livestreamed. Panelists will include William G. Gale of the Brookings Institution; Rich Lowrie of Friends of Herman Cain, and Stephen Moore of the Wall Street Journal.

***
Another sign that Cain is getting into the swing of things in …

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Your morning jolt: A hip-hop concert becomes weak spot for Occupy ATL

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. left, is separated from Occupy Atlanta protesters, right, by a securtiy guard as they face off during the mayor's press conference at City Hall in Atlanta on Monday afternoon. Curtis Compton, ccompton@ajc.com

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. left, is separated from Occupy Atlanta protesters, right, by a securtiy guard as they face off during the mayor's press conference at City Hall in Atlanta on Monday afternoon. Curtis Compton, ccompton@ajc.com

The man with Ludacris’ phone number sought the high ground in the battle for Woodruff Park on Monday.

In press conference packed with weirdness, Mayor Kasim Reed announced that Occupy Atlanta protesters would be cleared from the green space “at a time of my choosing.”

He asked a cadre of religious leaders, lined up behind him, to negotiate a peaceful exit for Occupy Atlanta. If there is no deal, force will be used, the mayor promised.

But it was the way the mayor built his case before reporters – arguing he was obligated to oust a group he had sanctioned two weeks ago — that was unusual. In declaring that the city’s relationship with Occupy Atlanta had changed for the worse, the former music industry attorney based his decision largely …

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Police placed on 12-hour shifts around Occupy Atlanta

An interesting tidbit was dropped inside a noon report by Channel 2 Action News. Two dozen cops patrolling the Occupy Atlanta campsite downtown are now on 12-hour shifts, and have been since Saturday.

That means increased overtime costs to the city, and a human strain on a police force with finite personnel resources. When taking into account the likelihood that — once it ramps up pressure, City Hall is unlikely to retreat — then it becomes hard to see campers remaining in Woodruff Park for another two weeks.

See the video below:

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

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