Archive for the ‘John Oxendine’ Category

Karen Handel hit with ethics complaint alleging $13k in illegal payments to staffers

Political blogger Bill Simon has filed a complaint against Republican candidate for governor Karen Handel with the State Ethics Commission, alleging that she illegally paid $13,200 to advisors of her gubernatorial campaign with money raised as a candidate for secretary of state.

Read the entire complaint here, but here’s the heart of the allegation:

Because Karen Handel did not wish to announce her candidacy for governor until after the 2009 Session of the Georgia General Assembly (as per Steve Handel’s December 12, 2008 e-mail), and because she could not raise money for governor until after she registered her campaign committee, she had no funds in which to pay any consultant or staff to work on her campaign for governor.

So, she unlawfully used funds from her Secretary of State’s account to finance the first 3 months of her campaign for governor.

Actually, Handel announced her campaign for governor in January 2009, during an impromptu session with reporters on the eve of …

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Roy Barnes bets his campaign on rural Georgia

Last Tuesday night, for the third time, Roy Barnes won the Democratic nomination for governor.

With 66 percent of the primary vote in his pocket, the former resident of the Governor’s Mansion held up the front page of that day’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The lead headline, “State falls further behind,” was a reference to school test scores.

Roy Barnes greets supporters on Tuesday night -- before leaving for rural Georgia. Associated Press/John Bazemore

Roy Barnes greets supporters on Tuesday night — before leaving for rural Georgia. Associated Press/John Bazemore

Barnes thanked his supporters, complimented his defeated opponents, and condemned Republicans who “gave tax breaks to special interests and then had to lay off teachers and shorten the school year to cover up their mistakes.”

And then he dropped off the face of metro Atlanta.

Not even an Aug. 2 visit to Atlanta by President Barack Obama will bring Barnes back. “He’s going to be in Middle and South Georgia,” campaign manager Chris Carpenter said Saturday.

Barnes has bet his campaign on rural Georgia — the one that turned its …

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Your morning jolt: A test of clout for Georgia Right to Life

The Republican runoff for governor on Aug. 10 will be major test of influence for Georgia’s most aggressive anti-abortion organization.

Georgia Right to Life has already made it clear – in a couple hundred thousand re-election robo-calls – that the group will oppose Karen Handel in favor of Nathan Deal.

And Deal has already indicated that social conservatives are at the heart of his runoff strategy.
So this message from GRTL president Dan Becker is worth noting:

Throughout the state [Tuesday], voters supported an amendment to the Georgia State Constitution that said the “right to life is vested in each human being from their earliest biological beginning until natural death” and that right should be protected by law.

In all 46 counties where the amendment was presented, it passed overwhelmingly by an amazing 75%! Georgia is the first state in the nation where voters have said “yes” to the personhood question.

The presence of the question was made at the county GOP level. (One …

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Austin Scott close to 8th District GOP win, and gets a bruising welcome from Jim Marshall

Updated at 11:50 p.m.:Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for all of your attention this evening. I’ll check in with you tomorrow morning.

Updated at 11:15 p.m.: On the Republican side of the 8th District congressional contest, state Rep. Austin Scott (R-Tifton), who until this spring was a candidate for governor, has apparently won the nomination without a runoff.

With 89 percent of the vote in, Scott is at 53 percent. Which prompted this bruising welcome from Doug Moore, spokesman for U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall (D-Macon):

“Austin Scott’s been in the legislature his whole adult life, He’s a career politician looking for his next job. Ran for governor, found no takers. Ran for Lieutenant Governor, got run off, and was told to run for Congress.

“He’s voted against taxing illegal immigrants, but he’s voted for, even proposed, multiple new tax increases on every Georgian.

“Politics makes strange bedfellows, but with Jim’s record of protecting and helping the people of this district, …

Continue reading Austin Scott close to 8th District GOP win, and gets a bruising welcome from Jim Marshall »

Your morning jolt: Anti-abortion group makes a late robo-call attack on Karen Handel

We’d been told to expect the call, and it arrived on the answering machine just before dinner. The machine missed the first few words:

“…Karen Handel’s extremely liberal record on abortion. As commission chair of Fulton County, Karen Handel voted to give over $400,000 to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.

“Karen Handel also sat back and watched an additional $800,000 go to this despicable organization. For the pro-life cause and the unborn children in Georgia, Georgia Right to Life asks you to reject Karen Handel on July 20. Thank you.”

The robo-call, presumably made to thousands of Republican voters across the state, is the first significant spending of third-party money in the GOP race for governor.

The Handel campaign has said the Fulton County cash was federal pass-through money directed to a Planned Parenthood unit in downtown Atlanta that performs no abortions.

Handel is the only one of six Republican candidates for governor not endorsed by GRTL, …

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Yet another poll shows John Oxendine slipping

InsiderAdvantage and Channel 2 Action News are out with a new poll – tapping 1,619 voters last night via automated phone calls.

The survey state Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine, who eight days ago was the undisputed front-runner, struggling to remain in the Republican hunt for governor.

Here’s the horse-race, with a 2.3 percent MOE:

Handel, 28%

Deal, 17%

Johnson, 14%

Oxendine, 13%

Chapman, 6%

McBerry, 3%

Putnam, 0%

Undecided, 19%

A Georgia Newspaper Partnership poll published Sunday in the AJC showed Oxendine in second place – with Nathan Deal in a statistical tie.

Scott Slade, the morning host of WSB (750AM) who moderated the Republican debate for governor last night, sends this link of a radio-based forum of eight candidates for governor – four on the Democratic side, and four on the Republican side.

Political veteran Bill Crane did the interviews, which aired Sunday.

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

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Your morning jolt: Republicans put distance between themselves and the state Capitol

Georgia Republican candidates for governor take part in a final debate. Curtis Compton/AJC

Georgia Republican candidates for governor take part in a final debate. Curtis Compton/AJC

The campaigning side of the state GOP couldn’t afford to be seen with the governing side of the Republican party on Sunday night.

Much was made of Karen Handel’s absence from the Atlanta Press Club debates for governor, held at Georgia Public Broadcasting headquarters.

But with one runoff berth – possibly two – at stake, the most interesting aspect of the GOP confrontation was the effort made by each candidate to separate himself from the Republican-controlled Legislature and Gov. Sonny Perdue.

Asked – by yours truly – whether $96 million in fee increases passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Perdue amounted to a tax increase, each candidate answered in the affirmative:

Nathan Deal: “It comes closer to a tax increase than anything else I can call it.”

Eric Johnson: “Anything that increases revenue to state government is just like a tax increase, no matter what you call …

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Sarah Palin sets off a ‘mama grizzly’ war in the GOP race for governor

Sarah Palin and GOP women have apparently given Karen Handel the boost she needs to survive on Tuesday — and her male rivals know it.

From a Saturday campaign summary by the Associated Press:

The fireworks were in the GOP race, where a recent poll showed state insurance commissioner John Oxendine, former secretary of state Karen Handel and ex-U.S. Rep. Nathan Deal battling for an expected runoff.

Handel accused Deal of sexism by pointing to a press release from his campaign saying that “real women” support his campaign. Handel said that attacked her own female supporters, including her most prominent backer: former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

“That just really disappointing,” Handel told The Associated Press.
Asked if the attack was sexist Handel said, “of course it is.”

Deal called the claim “absurd” and said he was simply using campaign branding — the word “real” — he’s adopted since the election began. His campaign slogan is “Deal. Real.”

“That certainly was not meant to …

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Your Saturday jolt: The Facebook campaigns to come

Over at Slate, John Dickerson uses Sarah Palin’s endorsement of Karen Handel in the Republican race for governor to forecast a 2012 trend:

Sarah Palin speaking in Duluth last month. AP

Sarah Palin speaking in Duluth last month. AP

The next Republican presidential campaign will happen in lots of new places. There will be all the familiar locations we love so much—Iowa, New Hampshire, diners, and Lincoln Day dinners—but this week offered another reminder, as if we needed one, that the race for the 2012 nomination will play out in the virtual world and at hyperspeed.

For the next 18 months, there will be stories and controversies and entire news cycles (or mini-cycles) in which the candidates deliver their messages but in which no one is actually seen speaking.

The most successful adopter is Sarah Palin on Facebook. She’s been posting messages on the social network for months. This week she endorsed Karen Handel in the Republican primary in Georgia, which drew a sharp response from one of Handel’s GOP challengers, and …

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Of prison camps, secret identities and final words

A pair of taped debates featuring Democratic and Republican candidates for governor – broadcast is tomorrow morning — ate up much of the first day of the last campaign weekend.

Immigration dominated both conversations:

Eric Johnson said Friday that he wanted to round up illegal immigrants in Georgia and he was willing to build prison camps to house them for deportation if elected governor.

“If we have to set up a Guantanamo Bay of Georgia, I would do it,” the Savannah Republican said….

Karen Handel was not present at the GOP forum — because Ray McBerry was. Early this morning, her campaign focused on the identity of the actress in this Nathan Deal attack in this TV ad:

The Handel campaign declared – and the Deal campaign confirmed – that the unnamed woman is Mandy Cronan, daughter-in-law of Deal’s business partner Ken Cronan.

The two own the auto salvage business, Recovery Services, Inc., that became the focus of an investigation by a congressional ethics office – which …

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