Archive for the ‘Sonny Perdue’ Category

Sonny Perdue takes himself out of 2014 race for Senate

Former Gov. Sonny Perdue has declared himself out of a 2014 contest to replace U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, but placed himself on the side of Republicans who believe the party has become too rigid in its approach.

In a statement e-mailed this morning, the governor declared himself “flattered” by the support that has been offered, but cited his reasons for avoiding the contest: A dozen grandchildren, business obligations and “a loving and devoted wife who has absolutely no interest in living in Washington.” From his statement:

Gov. Sonny Perdue has removed himself from the long list of Republicans considering a 2014 run for the U.S. Senate. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Gov. Sonny Perdue has removed himself from the long list of Republicans considering a 2014 run for the U.S. Senate. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

“Our country deserves more than the current dysfunction in Washington D.C. and our party needs to return to problem-solving conservatism. We have an opportunity, led by the examples of Republican Governors across the nation, to prove to the country that we are the party that can rise above the dogma and …

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Finding a fix for a 70-year-old wrong on the Georgia coast

In metro Atlanta, Robert Highsmith is known as one of the best fixers around.

If you’re a politician just arrested for DUI, perhaps in the company of a woman who is not your wife, this is the barrister who receives your one phone call.

Highsmith runs the Atlanta office of the Holland & Knight law firm. Connections? A steadfast Republican, Highsmith served as Gov. Sonny Perdue’s legal counsel. But he is not exclusive. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, a Democrat, is a former law partner and friend.

We all know that clout usually works on behalf those who already have it. But every now and then, people without such juice are offered a taste. This week, Highsmith announced that he and his law firm would attempt what could be the biggest fix of his career — for free.

Holland & Knight will represent the descendants of a group of black subsistence farmers and fishermen seeking the return of 2,600 coastal acres in McIntosh County taken away 70 years ago by the federal government. An act …

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Slow down the tax reform train, conservative activists say

With less than an hour to go before a massive tax reform measure comes to a first vote in the House, a bewildered group of conservative activists at the state Capitol urged lawmakers to slow down.

“Here we are, we’re voting in an hour and and we’re having this press conference. There’s something fundamentally wrong with that,” said Julianne Thompson of Georgia Tea Party Patriots.

Kay Godwin of Georgia Conservatives in Action said she and others have met with the governor, the House speaker and Senate leadership and expressed their support of tax reform – but only saw details of the bill’s conent in the last few hours. “We’re perfectly willing to stand with them to get this done,” Godwin said. “But there are bits and pieces that are not acceptable.

Among the most objectionable parts, said Bil Hudson of Madison Forum, is an income cap of $65,000 on income earned by senior citizens. In 2009, as part of a deal for the hospital bed tax, Gov. Sonny Perdue had …

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Your morning jolt: Ga. Supreme Court overturns school board ousters

The Georgia Supreme Court has unanimously overturned Gov. Sonny Perdue’s 2010 decision to remove three members of the Warren County school board in east Georgia, while it was in the midst of an accreditation crisis.

The governor can remove members of a constitutionally mandated board if they violate the state’s ethics law – but not simply because they’re dysfunctional.

Look for this one to have implications for other school boards under scrutiny. A summary of the just-released decision:

Official Code of Georgia §45-10-4 grants the governor authority to remove members of any “board, commission, or authority” created by statute who have violated the state’s code of ethics law. However, “county school boards are creations of the Constitution,” Justice P. Harris writes in today’s opinion.

“While appellees argue that administrative removal of members of constitutionally-created boards, commissions and authorities is a wise policy that is consistent with our …

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Your morning jolt: Vote identifies arms to be twisted in charter school fight

If Wednesday’s House vote on charter schools was intended to smoke out the opposition, consider it done. Supporters of the proposed constitutional amendment fell 10 votes short of the 120 needed for a two-thirds majority.

At the Georgia Report, Tom Crawford identified the defectors in an otherwise partisan affair:

[S]even Democrats voted with most of the GOP majority for HR 1162: Alisha Thomas Morgan, Rahn Mayo, Margaret Kaiser, Stacey Evans, Sheila Jones, Karla Drenner, and Ralph Long….
There were some defectors in the Republican ranks as well.

Lawmakers from rural districts, where it’s a struggle to keep public schools in operation, consider charter schools to be a metro Atlanta issue and are concerned that HR 1162 would harm their local schools.

There were nine Republicans from outside metro Atlanta who voted against HR 1162: Tommy Benton, Ben Harbin, Mark Hatfield, Susan Holmes, Tony McBrayer, Tom McCall, Ed Rynders, Kip Smith, and Jason Spencer.

Republicans Jason …

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Your morning jolt: Four Florida polls put Mitt Romney in driver’s seat

If you haven’t been polled Florida, you don’t have a phone:

– According to a Quinnipiac University survey released this morning:

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has a 43 – 29 percent lead over former House Speaker Newt Gingrich among Republican likely voters in Florida, the nation’s first big-state presidential primary…. This compares to a 38 – 29 percent Romney lead in a January 27 survey.

An NBC/Marist survey also shows Mitt Romney with a 15-percentage point lead over Newt Gingrich.

Public Policy Polling of North Carolina shows a somewhat closer contest:

PPP’s second day of tracking in Florida finds little change in the state of the race. Mitt Romney leads with 39% to 32% for Newt Gingrich with Rick Santorum at 14% and Ron Paul at 11%. Romney and Santorum are both down a single point from Saturday’s polling while Paul has gained 2 points and Gingrich has stayed in place.

— The survey showing the tightest race comes from Newsmax and InsiderAdvantage of …

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Sunday sales votes had 82 percent success rate in Ga.

In 127 cities and counties across Georgia, referendums to permit the Sunday retail sale of alcohol had an 82 percent success rate, according to a list compiled by the Georgia Food Industry Association, one of the efforts’ chief backers.

Be the first on your block to see the list here. Twenty-one counties and cities voted down the measure. Of those, 13 were south of I-20. Albany, Americus, Brunswick, Swainsboro, Sumter County, and Waycross were the largest entities to defeat the measure.

North of I-20, Elbert and Whitfield counties said no.

But the number of yes votes was breath-taking. Two-thirds of more than 266,000 Georgians who cast ballots on the issue Tuesday voted yes. Even the city of Perry, home to Sonny Perdue – who as governor blocked the legislation through his two terms – passed the measure with a 55 percent majority.

Decatur had the highest margin of passage, by 91 percent.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or …

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A taboo topic: Picking up the tab for Port of Savannah deepening

If asked to identify the most forbidden topic in the state Capitol, the taboo of all taboos, a stranger would naturally run a finger down the list of standard human frailties.

Very likely, he would think, one ought not to blab about the fellow who is smooching someone whom he ought not to smooch. Or perhaps we should kill the chatter about the lobbyist with the large and accommodating wallet.

Both choices would be well off point. These days, the one thing you must never, ever mention publicly in the Capitol is the possibility that, in this scourge of an economy, with classrooms crying out for teachers and roads crumbling, the state of Georgia might be required to pony up $600 million to lower the bottom of the Savannah River.

At the Port of Savannah, containers are off-loaded from a mammoth overseas vessel and are moved to a container field for processing and transportation to the final destination. Special/Russ Bryant

At the Port of Savannah, containers are off-loaded from a mammoth overseas vessel and are moved to a container field for processing and transportation to the final destination. Special/Russ Bryant

For more than two years, public officials from Georgia …

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Your morning jolt: Georgia’s illegal immigration bill goes too far, says Sonny Perdue

Former Gov. Sonny Perdue continues to surprise many Republicans with his comments about Georgia’s new illegal immigration law.

“The problem is the message it sends about Georgia as a friendly place,” Perdue told Lori Geary of Channel 2 Action News in a report broadcast Wednesday:

The former governor signed a 2006 bill that prohibited the use of illegal immigrants on public construction projects – but the legislation didn’t include penalties for local governments.

“I thought that was enough. We sent some signals, we put some parameters around that,” Perdue said. “We tried to do it in a way that did not dissuade people who wanted to come here for the American dream for all the right reasons.”

Perdue said this about the burden that undocumented residents place on public schools and hospitals:

“I think that, to some degree, is overstated. I believe that when we did our Declaration and Pledge [of] Allegiance, I really believe we meant liberty and justice for …

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Your morning jolt: Tim Pawlenty heads to Georgia for much-needed cash

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty will make his first appearance in Georgia as a presidential candidate next Tuesday at a West Paces Ferry fundraiser.

GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota. AP

GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota. AP

The $500-a-head event will be held at the Cherokee Town & Country Club, just down the way from the state’s most prominent public housing occupant, Gov. Nathan Deal – who has declared he’s sticking with Newt Gingrich.

But as you can see on invitation, the list of hosts – after former Gov. Sonny Perdue, former state Sen. Eric Johnson, and Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus – includes Tricia Pridemore, Deal’s unsuccessful candidate for state GOP chairman.

Otherwise, the host list looks like a reunion of Perdue staffers, led by Nick Ayers, Pawlenty’s campaign manager. Click here to see the entire invitation.

The cash is much needed. With a campaign contribution disclosure looming — which will be a measure of his viability — the Washington Post reported on …

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