Lawmaker’s reluctance to use bathroom language results in ‘cowardly’ drug accusation

State Rep. Scott Holcomb, D-Atlanta, says his Republican challenger has taken his reluctance to use the word “pee” on the floor of the House and turned it into a “cowardly” accusation that the lawmaker engaged in illegal drug use while serving as an officer in the U.S. Army.

The incident arises from this year’s debate over a bill to require welfare recipients to submit to random drug tests. Holcomb, an opponent of the measure, took to the well and recounted his experience in the military.
Said Holcomb:

“I’ll also tell you, as someone who went through that – my luck isn’t always the best, and I would always get the call after I had – you know. And so, then I would have to sit there, and drink bottles and bottles of water until I could finally do what I needed to do take the test. It can have a real impact on productivity.”

Said Holcomb in an interview this morning: “I was talking about going to the bathroom, but wasn’t I wasn’t going to say that on the floor of the House.” At the time, Republicans got the joke. In this video of Holcomb’s entire remarks, you can see state Rep. Matt Dollar,R-Marietta, playfully hand him a bottle of water.

But the TV ad put out by Holcomb’s GOP opponent, Chris Boedeker, cuts Holcomb’s remarks at “you know” — letting the viewer infer that the lawmaker was confessing to drug use. It then links the drug use accusation to Holcomb’s opposition to the drug-testing bill. The spot was first posted at, and can now be found at Huffington Post:

“Chris Boedeker is a liar and a coward. He and his colleagues know that this ad is untrue. Republicans should be ashamed that their money is being used for this,” Holcomb said.

Boedeker and his campaign declined to comment on the TV ad, or Holcomb’s characterizations. The spot was intended for weekend use on cable TV in the district, which stretches from northern Atlanta into DeKalb County.

Don’t be surprised if that never happens.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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27 comments Add your comment

Bryan Long

October 18th, 2012
12:08 pm

Rep. Holcomb served in the Army for 12 years, including tours in Bosnia and Iraq. He was a proud member of the 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart.

This is the kind of military service that our nation honors with national holidays. If Chris Boedeker thinks that acknowledging this service is “bragging” then I don’t think he’s fit for public office in Georgia.

In addition, the speech in the ad shows Rep. Holcomb fighting for Georgia’s poorest families — working mothers making less than $26 per day.

I wish Georgia’s General Assembly had more honorable men like Rep. Holcomb.

Liz Flowers

October 18th, 2012
12:20 pm

@Bryan – Well said. If I was in a fox hole of any sort, I’d be honored to be in it with Rep. Scott Holcomb — a man of dignity, who has served his constituents with distinction.

ike sans mike

October 18th, 2012
12:21 pm

Pee for enjoyment, not for employment.

Marlboro Man

October 18th, 2012
12:22 pm

The GOP m/o is to smear,lie and degrade then accuse the opponent of the same. They use cute “catchy’ phrases and if elected their record is not good. They make fools of their flock.

[...] Jim Galloway over at the AJC’s Political Insider has the full story. State Rep. Scott Holcomb, D-Atlanta, says his Republican challenger has taken his reluctance to use the word “pee” on the floor of the House and turned it into a “cowardly” accusation that the lawmaker engaged in illegal drug use while serving as an officer in the U.S. Army. [...]


October 18th, 2012
12:26 pm

Many sitting Republican legislators have contributed to Boedeker. Now is the time for them to denounce this dishonest and shameful attack and ask for a refund of their contribution.

Between Holcomb and Boedeker, it is clear who isn’t fit to serve.

Jim Restrepo

October 18th, 2012
12:30 pm

I’d be more outraged, if a certain senator named Chambliss hadn’t used the exact same smear tactics to unseat Cleland. Standard right-wing move, smear smear and smear some more, then act outraged when the other side does the same.

Margaret Ciccarelli

October 18th, 2012
12:30 pm

Rep. Holcomb is a fine man, serves his district well, and is respected at the state capitol. He moderated a debate I attended yesterday and opened with thoughtful comments about public education and the needs of GA’s students. Boedecker took a cheap shot and should be ashamed.


October 18th, 2012
12:35 pm

Anyone that votes for someone that attacks vets is lower than dirt!

Committed to freedom

October 18th, 2012
12:38 pm

Stop handing out government welfare, put it back in the hands of private charities funded only by voluntary contributions, and let them screen their recipients any way they want. While we’re at it, end the government war on drugs completely so millions of otherwise productive folks can get out of jail and return to help provide for their families. As always, government creates a problem and then spends billions if not trillions trying to fix it with more government waste.


October 18th, 2012
12:40 pm

Where was Boedecker during the war? I don’t know, because all I have gotten from him are smears and robo calls denouncing Scott as anti-education and, in the latest call, anti-English. Who is Boedecker? Where is he getting money to run? Why won’t he respond to questions? Who’s the real coward?

Ostrich Racer

October 18th, 2012
1:02 pm

I served briefly with Holcomb. I didn’t particularly like him, but he was an excellent Soldier and attorney. He not only did his job in Iraq, he played an important role. (His call sign was “Scorpio”. True story.) He is an absolutely honorable man, and any suggestion to the contrary is beneath contempt.


October 18th, 2012
1:11 pm

Does mr. boatanchor think the voters in the 81st District are really that stupid?
I guess anyone can become a Candidate in the OnePartyState.

Jeff Schoenberg

October 18th, 2012
2:54 pm

I am a friend of Rep. Holcomb. He is an inspiring, sincere public servant. I am appalled. Everyone involved in this disgraceful episode, from Mr. Boedeker himself to his campaign team, his consultants, his funders and his supporters all need to take a good long look at themselves. This is way, way over the line. What does it say that they believed it was OK to slander a distinguished military veteran? Holcomb did three combat deployments, honorably and well. That apparently means nothing to these political hacks. An apology is hardly enough. I want to see a formal apology and the Republican party distance themselves from Boedeker’s candidacy. He isn’t just a liar, he’s utterly unfit for public service.

Steve Perkins (De Kalb Democrat)

October 18th, 2012
3:21 pm

Reprehensible…Shallow Detestable and vile… You are a coward . a liar and a fool Boedecker!

Dump Boedeker

October 18th, 2012
4:09 pm

To add to all of the excellent comments above.

His campaign team is includes John Garst, one of the most filthy campaigners extant.

His GOTV person is disgraced former House Representative Jill Chambers, known for her disgusting and scorched earth (and untrue) campaigns.

His attack dogs besides Chambers are Tome Owen and Joe Newton. Who went to his primary opponents house at night and were threatening her because she was an abortionist. She is, in fact, a well respected gynecological surgeon.

Boedeker said he would take no money from special interests or lobbyists, “not a penny.” Look at his disclosures. There are $2500 donations from Republican legislators. Where does he think that came from? No special interests……? No lobbyists……..? No Principles.

And yes. What the heck has he ever accomplished? I see no record of serving the community. More to come.


October 18th, 2012
5:10 pm

Liars… cowards…. Yep.

[...] Holcomb’s Republican opponent, Chris Boedeker, has already pulled the ad from YouTube after receiving negative press attention. [...]

Dump Boedeker

October 18th, 2012
7:19 pm

Coward. If you thought you had the guts to smear your opponent, have the cojones to put it out there. The GOP must be real proud of the money they threw at this POS.

Dump Boedeker

October 18th, 2012
7:23 pm

Male version of Jill Chambers. All fluff and puff, no substance. The first time Jill had a real opponent in this district she got beaten. Elena was smart, beautiful, poised and articulate. All that Jill was not.

Sort of like the match up here. Veteran with law degree, community service, and brains against this guy, Boedeker, who has done nothing and is the Tea Party (no lobby money) hypocrite.

Classic Conservative

October 18th, 2012
7:37 pm

Chris Boedeker. Shame on you and your house. Shame.

Billy Vincent

October 18th, 2012
7:48 pm

I went to high school with Scott Holcomb. At a time when most boys are making foolish choices trying to prove themselves Scott always show a maturity rarely seen from an adolescence. He was a friend to all his classmates, well liked by everyone and gave his time and efforts to the community regularly. Its amazing what this clown is alleging, but I know the true character of Scott. And I am sure the people of Georgia already do too.


October 19th, 2012
8:29 am

Jim, what does Senator Chambliss have to say about this?

Amanda Mattingly

October 19th, 2012
11:08 am

Rep Scott Holcomb is a decent, smart, and honorable man who has served our country and state well. He is a fine elected official, and all Georgians should be proud to have him at the state capitol. Shame on Republicans for supporting someone who would try to spread such lies.

[...] The Boedeker campaign has pulled the video from YouTube, but the Huffington Post has posted its own copy. [...]


October 19th, 2012
11:48 am

I wonder if Boedeker and those who produced this video could pass the test. This is so typical of a lot of so-called Republican candidates for office. It’s refreshing to see that some conservatives are calling this what it is — a lie and a shameful act of desperation on the part of a losing candidate.

Nan Orrock

October 19th, 2012
3:00 pm

Scott Holcomb is widely known as a person of integrity, intelligence, and stellar character. We’ve seen these mudslinging lowdown GOP mudslinging attacks before – nothing new here – but it’s time to draw the line and expose these bozo s for who they are! Appreciate all the comments that are doing just that!