Archive for October, 2012

Joseph Lowery in radio ads: ‘Don’t let them resegregate our schools’

Opponents of Tuesday’s charter school ballot question this afternoon unveiled a series of four racially provocative, 60-second radio spots aimed at African-American audiences across the state.

Three of the radio ads include this plea from the 91-year-old Rev. Joseph Lowery, the legendary civil rights figure: “Don’t let them resegregate our schools.”

In case that message didn’t penetrate, the opposition group — Vote Smart! No to State-Controlled Schools — labeled one of the spots “Plessy” and another “Ferguson.” Plessy v. Ferguson was the 1896 U.S. Supreme Court case that legalized segregated public facilities in the South and ushered in the Jim Crow era.

It’s important to note that the charter school measure, which would reaffirm state authority to create charter schools over the objections of local systems, has significant support among African-Americans, according to polls – who figure heavily in pro-Amendment One advertising.

Listen to “Plessy” …

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Presidential candidates reduce a 4-year-old to tears

Here’s the background on the tears from 9News in Colorado:

A 4-year-old Fort Collins girl expressed her frustration over the seemingly never-ending presidential campaign.

9NEWS viewer Elizabeth Evans said she and her daughter, Abigael, were listening to NPR on a trip to the grocery store Tuesday when she started tearing up.

The mother asked Abigael why she was crying and she responded, “I’m tired of Bronco Bamma and Mitt Romney.”

NPR has apologized.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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With Obama (relatively) close in Ga., chances of a popular-electoral split are slim

The last week has been with replete with national polls showing a lead by Republican Mitt Romney, but swing state surveys that show President Barack Obama firmly in control there — leading some to wonder whether one candidate (Romney) could win the popular vote while another (Obama) wins the electoral contest.

The NYT’s Nate Silver today points to Georgia polling as a reason that this is unlikely to happen:

Mr. Obama trailed by “only” eight points, for instance, in a poll of Georgia that was released on Tuesday. Those are somewhat worse results than Mr. Obama achieved in 2008, when he lost Georgia by five percentage points. But they’re only a little bit worse, whereas the national polls are suggestive of a larger decline for Mr. Obama in the popular vote.

The survey in question is the Survey USA poll commissioned by 11Alive. An AJC poll of the presidential contest in Georgia, conducted two weeks ago, showed a similar margin. We’ll let Silver continue:

Or take the …

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Your daily jolt: Amendment One opponents scrape together cash for a TV ad

Opponents of Amendment One, the ballot issue to reinforce the state’s power to establish charter schools, have scraped up enough cash — $40,000, they say – to launch a low-budget TV campaign:

The ad features Donna Kosicki, president of the Georgia Parent Teachers Association, state School Superintendent John Barge (indirectly), and Valarie Wilson, president of the Georgia School Board Association.

The spot is seeing limited air-time in metro Atlanta and Columbus, said state Sen. Emanuel Jones, D-Decatur. “We’re hoping we can raise some more funds so we can really put it out over the state.”

Last week, the lead proponent organization for the charter school measure, Families for Better Public Schools, reported raising $1.2 million, much of it in high-dollar contributions. Vote Smart! No to State-Controlled Schools reported raising $18,164.

Jones, who is currently chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus, has emerged as the political leader of Amendment One opponents. …

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White voter registration in Ga. dips below 60 percent

For the first time, white voters in Georgia will make up less than 60 percent of all “active” registered voters in the state, according to statistics just released by Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

White voter registration, which stood at 63 percent in 2008, has dropped to 59 percent of the 5.3 million signed up to cast ballots in this year’s presidential contest. African-American registration stands at 30 percent, just as it did in 2008.

The difference comes from the growing pool of voters who decline to identify themselves by race, or describe themselves as something other than white, black, Asian-Pacific, Hispanic-Latino, or Native American. That group grew from 3.6 percent in 2008 to 8 percent today.

The decline of the white vote in Georgia has been slow but steady. In January 2001, whites made up 72 percent of registered voters; in January 2007, they were 67 percent. Blacks in 2001 made up 26 percent of the electorate, and 27 percent in 2007.

As a whole, the number of …

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Republicans rallying behind an Atlanta Democrat?

This morning, we told you that state Rep. Scott Holcomb, D-Atlanta, was leaning more and more on that yanked video by his GOP opponent, Chris Boedeker, to raise questions among Republicans.

The 30-second spot never made it to TV – so far as we know – but has had a half-life on the Internet. In it, Boedeker edited video of Holcomb at the well of the House to make it seem that Holcomb was confessing to drug use while in the U.S. Army.

As the weekend began, Holcomb received this Tweeted endorsement from Erick Erickson of Redstate.com:

“I’m proud to support Democrat Scott Holcomb for re-election in the Georgia State House. Better an honest Democrat than a lying fool.”

But more GOP shoes were dropping even as we wrote that. Over at Todd Rehm’s Georgia Pundit, Boedeker’s Republican primary opponent, gynecologist Carla Roberts, this morning condemned the fellow she said had falsely painted her as an abortionist who’d left her family.

She didn’t actually endorse …

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Your daily jolt: In New Jersey, Christie praises Obama’s handling of Hurricane Sandy

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a strong supporter of Republican Mitt Romney, may have offered up the first hint of Hurricane Sandy’s impact on the presidential contest, as he showered President Barack Obama with early praise. From Politico.com:

“It’s been very good working with the president,” Christie said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “He and his administration have been coordinating with us. It’s been wonderful.”

The GOP governor also sent out a thankful tweet: “I want to thank the President personally for all his assistance as [we] recover from the storm.”

Christie said he spoke with Obama three times on Monday, including at midnight, when Obama agreed to speed along an major disaster declaration for New Jersey without all the “normal FEMA mumbo jumbo.” The declaration was issued this morning, according to Christie.

Christie is just as effusive in this clip from CBS’ “This Morning”:

***
Saturday voting pushed the number of votes cast in …

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Hurricane Sandy and the waning finances of U.S. meteorology

In this image taken today by NOAA's GOES East, Hurricane Sandy is seen on the east coast of the United States. The storm was expected to continue moving parallel to the Southeast coast most of the day and approach the coast of the mid-Atlantic states by Monday night, before reaching southern New England later in the week. AP Photo/NOAA

In this image taken today by NOAA's GOES East, Hurricane Sandy is seen on the east coast of the United States. The storm was expected to continue moving parallel to the Southeast coast most of the day and approach the coast of the mid-Atlantic states by Monday night, before reaching southern New England later in the week. AP Photo/NOAA

J. Marshall Shepherd and John Knox, both meteorological experts at the University of Georgia, have turned this op-ed noting that Hurricane Sandy is being tracked by a U.S. climate-and-weather network – largely funded by the federal government – that is coming under increasing financial pressure:

In the waning weeks of hurricane season, nature continues to provide tricks rather than treats. Hurricane Sandy, a storm with the lowest central pressure of the 2012 hurricane season, is bearing down on the East Coast of the United States.

The trick is determining the extent of meteorological, societal, and political impacts from Hurricane Sandy as …

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Uh-oh. New Falcons stadium will ‘very likely’ require state Capitol approval

Atlanta Falcon fans begin to fill the parking lot tailgating on Northside Drive across from the Georgia Dome before the NFC divisional playoff game against the Green Bay Packers last January. Jason Getz, jgetz@ajc.com.

Atlanta Falcon fans begin to fill the parking lot tailgating on Northside Drive across from the Georgia Dome before the NFC divisional playoff game against the Green Bay Packers last January. Jason Getz, jgetz@ajc.com.

Note to Matt Ryan: No pressure, and thanks for the 6-0 start. But you and your teammates would be doing your boss a great service if the Falcons were still in the Super Bowl hunt come January.

Arthur Blank will need every advantage he can muster in the state Capitol this winter if he wants that new $1 billion stadium with the retractable roof.

After the quiet 2010 passage of legislation necessary to partially fund the enterprise — by extending Fulton County’s hotel-motel tax until 2050 — the idea was to keep the project away from lawmakers.

The problem? The hotel-motel tax is expected to contribute $300 million to the new stadium. But the bonding capacity for the Georgia World Congress Center Authority, which operates the Georgia Dome and would oversee the …

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John Barrow’s race to survive now rated ‘tilt Democrat’

The Rothenberg Political Report is now handicapping Georgia’s 12th District congressional race as “toss-up/tilt Democrat” – with an assessment that U.S. Rep. John Barrow, D-Augusta, may yet again escape Republican attempts to re-district him out of Congress.

The explanation is behind a pay wall, but Georgia Tipsheet says it includes this sentence:

“This district is one that should have never been a headache for the GOP, but after getting a weak nominee in state Rep. Lee Anderson, reality is setting in for many Republican operatives.”

Barrow has also been the beneficiary of a well-crafted TV campaign, emphasizing his dedication to gun rights and also focusing on Anderson’s refusal to meet him in debates.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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