Not everyone who attended Rick Santorum’s campaign event Sunday was a friendly.
In keeping with a long-standing tradition in Georgia politics, those who left First Redeemer Church in Cumming, Ga., were greeted at their vehicles with a yellow “smear” sheet under their wiper blades.
On one side reprinted a London Daily Mail account of a long-term romance that Karen Santorum, the candidate’s wife, once had with an abortion doctor. On the other side focused on a Daily Caller article focusing on a 2008 declaration by Santorum that “mainline Protestantism in this country…is a shambles. It is gone from the world of Christianity as I see it.”
For the easily appalled: Smear sheets in church parking lots go back at least to the late ’60s. We used to have a fellow in Cobb County who specialized in them.
As far as the latter allegation goes, the distributor of the anonymous tract clearly doesn’t know his/her theological politics. First Redeemer is a Southern Baptist church, and the Southern Baptist Convention is the largest Protestant denomination in the U.S. But the denomination has always kept itself apart from other “mainline” denominations – Presbyterians, Episcopalians, even Methodists.
Rick Santorum’s 70-minute address last night declared that the right to pursue happiness was in fact the right “to do the morally right thing.” After the meeting, early this morning, state Sen. David Shafer, the chairman of the Santorum effort in Georgia, helpfully passed on a link to the definition of “happy” established by the 1828 edition of Noah Webster’s dictionary.
GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich may have another another $10 million from Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson headed to his affiliated super PAC, Winning the Future. But a frugal Gingrich is apparently not taking any chances.
At Chicago’s O’Hare, my AJC colleague Daniel Malloy just boarded an a commuter to Tulsa – right behind the former U.S. House speaker. It’s a small plane, and all seating is coach. Gingrich spokesman R.C. Hammond says his boss has been flying a mix of commercial and charter planes all along.
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes a look at Newt Gingrich’s claim that he was exonerated of all ethics charges against him as U.S. House speaker.
On the transportation front, we have two contrary trends. From Walter Jones of Morris News Service, we have the observation that the landing of a Caterpillar plant near Athens will increase focus on an improved Port of Savannah and the roads and rail that lead to it:
At the Caterpillar announcement, Vice President Mary Bell stressed that Athens’ four hours from the port of Savannah had been a major factor in her decision of where to locate the $200 million factory that will eventually bring 1,400 jobs and another 2,800 supplier jobs.
“Logistics is a primary success factor for our business, and the proximity of Athens to the Savannah port will be a major, major plus for us,” she said.
For any Georgian who had not already embraced the gospel of deepening the Savannah River to accommodate larger freighters, Bell’s words may be convincing testimony. It was also more evidence of how interconnected the state’s economy is when a four-hour drive is close enough to sway the location of a multinational’s plant.
On the other side of the coin, late last week, Creative Loafing pointed out a letter on the website of the DeKalb County NAACP, announcing it would oppose the one-cent regional sales tax for transportation up for a July 21 vote. The motivator: The failure of an expansion of the I-20 corridor to make the project list.
Democrats have found a secret strategy sure to return them to statewide glory: Act like feuding Republicans.
Last night, Democratic vice-chair R.J. Hadley sent out a note declaring that the state executive committee hadn’t been meeting enough. He announced that he would preside over a meeting he and other members were calling for Wednesday.
Chairman Mike Berlon responded this morning with an lengthy e-mail that included this:
I have never been contacted by Mr. Hadley prior to receiving this email about his intentions to call a meeting. If he would have simply called and asked he would have realized that I planned to call one upon completion of the Legislative Session. Unfortunately, he never spoke with me about this at all prior to making this demand. I assume that the others involved in calling the meeting were not aware that he never spoke to me. In my opinion, as well as that of General Counsel, this request or demand by Mr. Hadley is completely out of order.
The second issue that is of great concern is that Mr. Hadley somehow believes that he has the authority to preside over such a meeting. Again, the By-Laws make it clear that that the Chair presides over any meetings of the Executive Committee. Furthermore, if the Chair is not available, the meeting is conducted by the First Vice Chair, Ms. Nikema Williams. There is no provision whatsoever for Mr. Hadley to act in that capacity. This has also been confirmed by General Counsel for the Party.
Berlon said the state Democratic executive committee on March 31. And that former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson will be the keynote speaker at the April 28 Jefferson-Jackson Day fundraiser.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider