In another sign that she’s not about to disappear from the political scene, former Republican candidate for governor Karen Handel was named Thursday as co-chair of a GOP program to recruit 150 women – and elect at least half – for state-level office across the country.
Leading the venture with Handel will be Kerry Healey, the former lieutenant governor of Massachusetts. They’ve got their work cut out for them. The Huffington Post, noting Handel’s appointment, turned up these numbers:
The Center for Woman American Women and Politics at Rutgers Univerity indicates that Democrats represent the majority of women state legislators in the country. The center’s statistics show that women make up 428 out of 1,971 state senators nationwide, with 265 being Democrats and 151 being Republicans, and one independent. Women hold 1,321 out of 5,411 state House seats nationally, with 791 being Democrats and 524 being Republicans, along with four progressives and two independents. To date, 1,078 women have won state legislative primaries nationally.
The struggle of Republican Tim Lee, the Cobb County Commission chairman, to hold onto his job continues to show up in local mailboxes. His latest hit on chief rival Bill Byrne, reminds voters that the former Cobb commission chairman, invested county money in a private-public venture to recycle garbage. It eventually went bust.
A hot District 52 state Senate race has become a course in ancient history. On Sunday, an AJC look at candidates and their economic histories noted that David Doss of Rome, a former member of the state transportation board, had county property tax liens in 2003 and 2008 totalling $4,963. They’ve been paid, and were the results of investments made with two business partners, Doss said.
On Thursday night, we had a conversation with Floyd County Probate Judge Steve Burkhalter, who’s still steamed over a conversation that he says he had with Chuck Hufstetler, an anesthesia provider who at the time was on the county commission and chairman of its finance committee.
At one session with commissioners, Burkhalter said the topic of his $6,000-a-year county-paid supplement came up. The judge quoted Hufstetler as saying, “What you make will depend on how much money you bring into the county.”
Burkhalter, who is still on the bench, and has been since 1997, said he told Hufstetler what he was suggesting amounted to a felony.
Hufstetler said last night that the conversation “absolutely” never happened. “I don’t know how to respond to something like that,” the Senate candidate said.
However, Burkhalter’s salary was indeed sliced – improperly, if this $18,000 check from the county, signed by Hufstetler in 2005, is any guide.
And a 2003 note from a Floyd County grand jury also provides evidence of a salary brouhaha between Burkhalter and the county: “It is the further position of the Grand Jury that the Probate Court is not to be a revenue raising tool through the use of fines, but a way of distributing fair punishment for individuals found guilty of offenses in that court.”
A third candidate in the District 52 contest, Hayden Collins of Cartersville, means the contest is likely headed for a runoff.
We told you earlier this week of a YouTube attack launched by state Rep. Mark Hatfield, R-Waycross, against his chief rival, 26-year-old Tyler Harper of Ocilla, in the race for the District 7 state Senate race down in south Georgia. Hatfield accused the Harper family business of taking improper advantage of affirmative action contracts offered by the federal government.
Harper has sent a copy of mailer that has his response – or non-response – to the charge. It’s an endorsement from two prominent pastors.
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes a look at state Sen. Vincent Fort’s contention that a transportation sales tax, if approved on Tuesday, would result in an increase in the cost of food and some medicine.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider