On Monday, Gov. Nathan Deal chose Savannah as a venue for one of his strongest endorsements yet of a penny sales tax to boost transportation spending. From Larry Peterson and the Savannah Morning News:
Deal acknowledged that people don’t like higher taxes.
“The question,” he added, “is what is the alternative to keep your area growing and progressive?”
…He said funds from the measure would help move goods more efficiently in and out of the port of Savannah.
Deal said the increase, which would boost sales taxes in Chatham County to 8 percent, is needed because other revenues haven’t kept pace with growth.
On a similar note, Lori Geary of Channel 2 Action News draws a line between July 31 transportation vote and the burgeoning race between Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers of Woodstock and Republican challenger Brandon Beach:
Then we have the case of Cobb County Commission Chairman Tim Lee, who took time from his re-election campaign last week to refer to critics of light rail as “spoiled brats.” From Geoff Folsom and the Marietta Daily Journal:
In a Monday email to the Journal, Lee attempted to retract his remarks.
“Let me apologize for calling anyone a spoiled brat,” he wrote. “Sometimes my passion for an issue gets ahead of me and I certainly wish I had chosen a better description.”
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes a look at an anti-transportation tax group’s contention that light rail in Cobb County would double the commute time for automobiles on I-75.
Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed by The New York Times and CBS News since the announcement said they thought that Mr. Obama had made it “mostly for political reasons,” while 24 percent said it was “mostly because he thinks it is right.” Independents were more likely to attribute it to politics, with nearly half of Democrats agreeing.
The results reinforce the concerns of White House aides and Democratic strategists who worried that the sequence of events leading up to the announcement last week made it look calculated rather than principled.
In a Monday report, Paul Crowley of 11Alive allows GOP strategist Ralph Reed to theorize on the problem that President Barack Obama’s endorsement of gay marriage has posed for Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed.
For the last two years, Jessica Colotl, the former Kennesaw State University student, has been the Georgia face of young people caught in the illegal immigration trap – brought here by their undocumented parents.
We may about to get a new contender for public sympathy: A Thursday rally will be held at Pebblebrook High School for Jesus Cruz, a recent graduate of that Cobb County high school who has been in deportation proceedings since last August. Cruz has been in the country since he was 11, brought here by his mother.
Jimmy Carter will be off to Egypt next week to watch the voting. From the Associated Press:
The Atlanta-based Carter Center has been accredited by Egyptian authorities to send international election witnesses for that country’s presidential election.
The Carter Center says it received approval from Egypt’s Supreme Presidential Election Commission to deploy 22 witnesses from 14 countries. The presidential election is set for May 23 and 24.
They will be joined by a larger delegation of 80 witnesses from over 35 nations who will travel to Egypt several days before the election, led by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider