June 21, 2017 6:41 AM HomePoliticsMorning Reads WITH PEACE Morning Reads WITH PEACE By edatlanta Politics 37 Comments Our CD-6-inflicted nightmare is finally over. While it seems a bit late: happy Father’s Day! “Accidents Will Happen” by Elvis Costello. Related: Gunshots are the third leading killer of children in the U.S. Good thing we don’t have a gun problem in this country. Today is the most important vote of the week. From the FBI to Emory Law School: Atlanta Big Law is Takin’ Over! Murals are the next major legal fight in Atlanta. Polk County inmates to deputy: we got you, fam. Like the rest of the Trump Administration, Chris Wray can’t go a week without a mini-scandal. Inside F1’s Quest for World Domination. Share this:TwitterFacebookTumblrRedditEmailPrint Related About Author edatlanta 37 Comments xdog Today is the first day of summer. The 2017 Northern Hemisphere summer solstice was at 12:24 AM. Be glad you’re not in Phoenix where it’s too hot for some planes to takeoff. June 21, 2017 7:10 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 You know, timing is everything – in politics and with non-political job opportunities. In Ossoff’s case, there were no heavyweight political legacy candidates vying for Price’s seat. No Jason, no Michele, no Kasim. He seemingly appeared out of nowhere. And he almost pulled it off. Right place. Right time. I really have to tip my hat in his direction. Same applies to Karen. I don’t know what political opportunities she had on her mind before Price got the nod. Interesting times. June 21, 2017 7:19 AM Log in to Reply xdog Pennsylvania starts growing medical marijuana. Here’s a look at the business at the greenhouse level. June 21, 2017 7:42 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 I’m all for it! Now bring back the same opportunities for the “bootleggers”, who before the 1900’s were often looked upon highly in their communities for their alcohol inspired creations! June 21, 2017 7:48 AM Log in to Reply chefdavid Kid Rock approves this message. https://heatst.com/entertainment/revealed-kid-rock-boasted-to-john-mcenroe-how-he-smoked-weed-on-white-house-lawn/ June 21, 2017 9:57 AM Log in to Reply chamblee54 Pro Tip to future campaigners: Don’t make a vulgar joke about your last name the campaign slogan. #VoteyourOssoff got old and annoying. https://twitter.com/KellyannePolls/status/877355893905666048 June 21, 2017 8:01 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope This interminable slog has me wondering if we’re doing elections all wrong. There were 63 days between election day (April 18) and the run-off (June 8). Sixty. Three. Days. Theresa May called for a snap election on April 18, the same day as “round 1” in GA-06. The UK, a country with 65 million people that still uses paper ballots, was able to dissolve their Parliament and have a nation-wide election faster than a Congressional district with a population of approximately 692,000. The French held their Presidential election on April 23 and the run-off on May 7. That’s two weeks between round 1 and round 2. They then held their Legislative elections on June 10 with a run-off on June 17. That’s only one week between round 1 and round 2. How can the French somehow pull off not one, not two, not three, but FOUR! nation-wide votes in the time between round 1 and the run-off in GA-06? 63 days between Election Day and the run-off made sense when this was a rural state that relied on horse-and-carriage to deliver news and information. But in an era when people have access to television, radio, Internet (although I’ve got a rant stored up about rural broadband access), do we really need to take this much time? *Also, kudos to the French for holding their elections on Saturdays as a way of increasing turnout and participation. June 21, 2017 8:19 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse Instant runoff, though it may not have made a difference in GA-6, is better than Georgia’s current system. June 21, 2017 10:14 AM Log in to Reply Saltycracker Agree, the voters have been ready. TV stations loved it. Who ever made big bucks staging Ossoff ads, his deceptive political positioning, his facial expressions and the nausous volume of them needs a Trumpism: “you’re fired.” June 21, 2017 11:08 AM Log in to Reply Will Durant Isn’t the long delay between election/primary and the final/runoff a federal/VRA mandated thing? If the Perdue-Nunn race had gone to a runoff then we would have been voting after the start of the session. However the possible Deal-Carter runoff was mandated by the GA Constitution to be run before the year’s end. Also it would have meant a total of 5 trips to the polls for Republicans during that cycle. I think we can all agree that this is SNAFU in the original context of that acronym. The State should be just as agnostic to party affiliation as it should be to religion. Period. And the feds should relent that military and expats have access to modern communications. June 21, 2017 11:32 AM Log in to Reply in_atl So, the DPoG Stacey Abrams strategy is now 0-3. This strategy consists of: A) ignoring the actual moderate Democrats who governed this state with an iron fist for decades and still exist in pretty good numbers B) finding left-liberal Democrats who have never held public office – or have not for very long – and have no voting record or campaign statements to pin them down on to pretend to be moderate Democrats and clearing the primary of opposition. Well scratch that … allow nominal, unfunded opposition from the left to make the preferred candidate look better, but no challenges from actual centrist, moderate, yellow dog, blue dog or conservative Democrats allowed. C) get the local – and national – media to run endless “articles” talking about how moderate, mainstream, bipartisan, pragmatic and qualified they are … along with a few “critics” hitting them for not being liberal enough The first two shots were “I share the last name of a famous moderate Georgia Democrat from yesteryear and I will hide the fact that I don’t share his politics” with Michelle Nunn and Jason Carter. This time it was someone completely out of left field trying his hand at the “outsider/populist technocrat” angle. The worst part: this tactic is more about suppressing ideological diversity in the DPoG – the type that existed for decades and still exists in the Republican counterpart – than actually winning elections. Jason Carter ran against an unpopular governor with real ethics problems. Michelle Nunn ran for an open seat against the cousin of an unpopular, failed governor who also had his share of ethics issues. Ossoff ran against a career politician who constantly changes her ideology to suit her electorate, is disliked by her own base (due to her past as a liberal chamber of commerce north Fulton Republican) and is not respected/liked by independents because of the Susan G. Komen debacle (which was a raw deal but most simply believe how the media reported it … which was reciting the Planned Parenthood party line lock stock and barrel). This means that had the DPoG ran good moderate Democrats, they win 1 of 3 or even 2 of 3. They probably lose the Senate race which was “nationalized” but Barrow beats Deal in 2014 easily and there are a number of Cobb or Sandy Springs Democrats that could have taken out Handel. But that means the DPoG having to support a moderate Democrat in an election (remember Barrow was initially elected before this current group took over the DPoG so they were stuck with him) and put up with a moderate Democrat as a leader in their coalition, who would inevitably raise money and recruit more candidates like him to run in other races, and broaden the base of the party as a result. The current DPoG would rather continue to lose with the party they have now than win with a bigger tent. Especially so long as they keep continuing to tell themselves that changing demographics will make Georgia more like California, Illinois and Virginia – where the minorities tipped those swing states into the GOP – and less like Florida and Texas (where a lot of the minorities were absorbed into the GOP). This is despite the mayor of Atlanta – who one would think would be all in on this strategy – being one of the most vocal people claiming that it is not going to work and stating that the DPoG needs to go back to being the big tent broad-based party that it was – in state and local politics anyway – until the current regime. What will it take for the DPoG to abandon this policy? I say the loss of its namesake, Stacey Abrams, in 2018 will be enough. June 21, 2017 8:39 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse Ideological diversity in the GOP? Climate change, guns, abortion, tax cuts for the rich, anti-environment and anti-regulation, repeal Obamacare, defense spending…. Well I guess you got the spectrum on gays…from anti-gay to grudging acceptance gays have rights under law as second-class citizens. June 21, 2017 9:18 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Where does Karen Handel’s position of “I’m ok with gay people until I need to discard them for electoral convenience” fit in that spectrum? June 21, 2017 9:30 AM Log in to Reply in_atl Simple. It shows that there is ideological diversity in the GOP. When Handel was representing Fulton County, she was a social liberal. When she ran for secretary of state, she was an agnostic on social issues because they weren’t relevant to the position. When she ran for governor, senator and in the 6th district, she took social positions that were just conservative enough to be competitive in the primary while not enough to cause her north Fulton power base to abandon her en masse. You may call that an unconscionable lack of principle. So do a lot of GOP primary voters who rejected her for governor and Senate. But the point is that she is in a party where such gyrations are possible and necessary. There are GOP enclaves with varying degrees on issues, and the state GOP is aware of that, accounts for it, and leverages as a strength to gain and maintain a majority. The Democratic Party lacks the same, which is why they are forced to resort to pretenders like Ossof, Carter and Nunn. June 21, 2017 10:09 AM Log in to Reply in_atl Well, yes there is ideological diversity in the GOP. There are plenty of north Fulton and north DeKalb GOPers who support climate change (and did back when it was called “global warming” too!), making firearm ownership illegal, making abortion the only medical procedure that is completely exempt from all federal/state/local regulation, oppose supply side economics, support environmental regulation and alternative energy etc. We know this because Karen Handel was one of them. It is impossible to get elected in Fulton, DeKalb and similar places – i.e. Athens – while being a mainstream Republican. Oh yes … there is also Johnny Isakson, longtime opponent of regulating abortion, who is the state’s senior senator. The cousin of the junior senator, Sonny Perdue, was a social conservative – though not a Ralph Reed style activist who actually pressed for making changes to the existing law mind you – but was fiscally to the left of Zell Miller. The current governor, Nathan Deal, has governed to the left of Zell Miller, Joe Frank Harris, Tom Murphy etc. on social issues and consistently repudiated his right flank on fiscal ones. By contrast, if there is a single prominent socially conservative Democrat in Georgia, please name him or her. (No, opposing bans on private ownership of firearms does not make you a social conservative; not even close, as socially liberal libertarians also support private ownership of firearms.) The Democrat in Georgia who is a hawk on national defense? Or who believes that our immigration laws should be enforced as written? Name her or him. The prominent Democrat in Georgia who explicitly opposes social democracy and Keynesian economics? Name her or him. Republicans: big tent with a social liberal as senior U.S. senator and guys from Fulton/DeKalb who support MARTA expansion into Cobb and Gwinnett in key policy posts in the state legislature (for example). Democrats: fighting over whether to be merely left-liberals who want to use corporate tax revenues to fund social programs a la Hillary Clinton or outright European style social democrats. And that is economic issues. There is no debate on social issues at all; only on rhetoric and tactics. Which means that there aren’t even DLC type Democrats left, the sort which Georgia supported in the 1992 presidential election with Zell Miller leading the way. June 21, 2017 9:57 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse “Well, yes there is ideological diversity in the GOP. There are plenty of north Fulton and north DeKalb GOPers who support climate change (and did back when it was called “global warming” too!), making firearm ownership illegal, making abortion the only medical procedure that is completely exempt from all federal/state/local regulation, oppose supply side economics, support environmental regulation and alternative energy etc.” Individuals. By that token, there’s as much diversity in the Democratic Party. My point concerned the national GOP, not local electeds. “We know this because Karen Handel was one of them.” Yeah, Handel joined the Log Cabin Republicans to get elected despite her opposition to gay rights. It’s what pandering pols do. June 21, 2017 10:20 AM Log in to Reply in_atl With all due respect the post that you replied to was “So, the DPoG Stacey Abrams strategy is now 0-3.” By going “My point concerned the national GOP, not local electeds” when my post was ENTIRELY about local electeds and contrasting the DPoG’s long history of electoral dominance as a big tent party that included both urban liberals, suburban moderates and rural conservatives to their preferring to lose in modern times in order to remain ideologically narrow, you were either trolling or wasting time. Or both. Which is it? “Yeah, Handel joined the Log Cabin Republicans to get elected despite her opposition to gay rights. It’s what pandering pols do.” You left out Barack Obama on the issue … he ran as a social moderate on the issue in 2008 because he knew that he would lose otherwise but flip-flopped in 2012 when he had the power of incumbency and an improving economy to insulate him. And you also left out Bill and Hillary Clinton, the latter of whom flip-flopped from supporting DoMA as late as 2008 (which Obama never did) to being to the left of Obama’s 2012 position in 2016. In fact, it is well nigh impossible to find a southern or midwestern Democrat who hasn’t flip-flopped on that and a host of social issues, and who aren’t moving to the left on criminal justice and economic these days also. (Remember when Democrats supported welfare reform, 3 strikes laws, enforcing immigration laws and charter schools for instance? It wasn’t that long ago.) So how about holding your own side to the same standard that you use to judge the opposition? June 21, 2017 10:36 AM Andrew C. Pope I’ve been holding off because there’s so much wrong with everything you’ve posted this AM and I don’t really have the time to adequately address it. I do want to push back on a one point here… “the DPoG’s long history of electoral dominance as a big tent party that included both urban liberals, suburban moderates and rural conservatives” Democrats in the South, not just Georgia, have undergone a massive ideological shift since the 1960s. This shift occurred because of national Democrats’ support for Civil Rights and the Republicans’ willingness to exploit the Civil Rights issue for political gain (see Nixon’s “Southern Strategy,” Reagan’s Philadelphia speech, and Lee Atwater’s entire political career). The state is still being run by the same types of people that were running it 20, 30, 50 years ago, those folks have just changed jerseys. Nathan Deal, former Democrat. Sonny Perdue, former Democrat. Zell Miller, Democrat in name only at this point. That isn’t the result of anything done by the Georgia Democratic Party, it’s the result of larger political shifts within both the Democrats and Republicans nationally. June 21, 2017 11:06 AM Noway2016 Pollsters’ credibility once again under the magnifying glass. Seven point Ossoff lead a few days out – then a four point actual loss? Wow! I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes this morning. First Jason, Michele and Trump. Now this? June 21, 2017 9:00 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Polls were all over the map and trending toward Handel in the last few days. I don’t think they were “off” by any stretch. The 7-point Ossoff poll looked like an outlier then. Looks like an outlier now. June 21, 2017 9:10 AM Log in to Reply bethebalance I think by and large we forget about margins of error. With races decided by 4-5%, margins of error can make polls relatively toothless. And when we look at polls, we need to look at what happens when we expand the %s to the boundaries of the margins of error. And even then, based on science, the assumption is that you can only be 95% confident that you’d be right even within the totality of that expanded range. So, polling is imperfect. Useful for a rough educated guess, but not much more. Unless you’re talking about political usefulness. June 21, 2017 10:45 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse An AJC column reported that Georgia hadn’t been bothering to use $49M in federal matching funds for school nurses. State leadership hates Medicaid that much. No worries, the state is pursuing the funding now. Just in time to waste money setting up a bureaucracy and hiring nurses as the national GOP reduces Medicaid funding. It’s what GOP fiscal conservatives do. https://www.ajc.com/news/state–regional-education/feds-consider-medicaid-cuts-state-pursues-million-for-school-nurses/7SzeBlsyPQavsZiqT02SBP/ June 21, 2017 9:09 AM Log in to Reply Saltycracker Apparently you aren’t familiar with school nurses. They have various reasons to work for half what they could in the private sector. The most typical being they are care driven for healthy children, like our schools and may like being on their child’s day schedule. Doesn’t matter what economic level is involved, today’s schools have an increasing population of children with all kinds of health issues. And with more single or working parents they may not get the health observation needed. The poorer the child the more likely they need this service or be sent to school with issues including contagious. School nurses are needed more than ever, so sayeth this right wing fiscal conservative with serious concerns with the edu-cracy. June 21, 2017 11:37 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse I am not opposed to more school nurses. The comment was a poke at the state having passed up funding only for benefits for the poor, then seek it when it would be less efficiently spent. June 21, 2017 9:43 PM Log in to Reply Will Durant Seth Meyers taped a segment of his show hours before the polls closed in CD6 with a fake Democratic Party pundit: Under the scenario in which Ossoff wins, the pundit said, “It is not an overstatement to say that the political world was turned on its head tonight” and that “anything short of victory would have been a disappointment.” And if he loses? “We always knew this was going to be a long shot. The fact that Jon Ossoff was even competitive was a major win for the Democratic Party.” If he wins, “This election was always going to be a referendum on the disastrous presidency of one Donald J. Trump.” And if he loses, “This election was always about the local issues and the people of Georgia. To extrapolate some broader national message would simply be foolish.” If he wins, “We will frame the messages of this election in a mass email to raise money for the Democratic Party,” he answered. And if Ossoff loses? “We will frame the messages of this election in a mass email to raise money for the Democratic Party.” June 21, 2017 9:38 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Great stuff from Cook Political Report this morning. The hype may have been Ossoff’s undoing. http://cookpolitical.com/story/10391 June 21, 2017 9:42 AM Log in to Reply in_atl That’s if you believe that Ossoff ever had a chance to begin with. A legitimate moderate who could have cast himself as being more conservative than Fulton County Commission chair/Fulton Chamber of Commerce/Secretary of State-era Karen Handel would have. (Handel has run to the right since then, but has no record in office of serving as a conservative, which is why she has yet to win a GOP primary for an office that anyone cares about outside of Fulton County.) But a guy with no record and doing his level best to avoid revealing his actual position on controversial and vital issues? Not a chance. Ossoff was always going to lose, whether in a high turnout race that provoked a Republican backlash or a low turnout race like the overlooked one in South Carolina last evening. June 21, 2017 10:27 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse Ossoff would have won April 18th in any of the 39 states that don’t have runoffs. And I don’t think the GOP would have had the discipline to unite about one candidate if there wasn’t a runoff. The 5% win in the deep red SC race is another red flag. June 21, 2017 9:51 PM Log in to Reply augusta52 Well, don’t get too used to the airwaves being free of political ads—the Atlanta mayoral race is four and a half months away, and it looks like Peter Aman is back on the air…. There was a lot of good commentary last night from varying sources on the airwaves—Mike Hassinger and Ladawn Jones raised good questions about polling results (anyone remember the Survey USA one that had Ossoff up by 7 a few weeks ago?), and David Axlerod noted Ossoff’s best chance (maybe only) was getting a majority in Round 1. Ossoff got about 125,000 votes yesterday—had he gotten 100,000 or so in Round 1, he would have prevailed. Looking at the county returns: (1) Ossoff needed closer to 45 percent in Cobb to win—looks like he ended up with 42, which is still pretty good for a Democrat in that part of the world. (In terms of statewide or even countywide offices in Cobb, if a Democrat is getting 42 in East Cobb, he or she is likely carrying Cobb overall, as the CD 11 part is more marginal and the CD 13 part in south Cobb is very Democratic). Late last night he was at 39 in Cobb but guess he went up overnight. (2) Ossoff needed to be close to 50/50 in the Fulton portion (maybe 49%) but fell about 7,000 votes short there. Handel benefitted from a str5ong showing in the Milton part of Fulton—she got 61% in Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones’s district up there—about a 5,100-vote margin, slightly more than half of her overall 9,700-vote win. (3) An untold story was DeKalb—yes, DeKalb hasn’t backed a Republican for president since the Berlin Wall was up and VCR’s were the cutting-edge technology of the day (the 1984 Reagan landslide), and Handel did not (nor was she expected to) win the DeKalb portion of the district last night. But Handel held her own there, breaking 40 percent in the county (about 42)—4 points higher than the 38 Trump won in the county last November. Obviously there was consolidation of GOP support in the county from Round 1. In April, Ossoff led Handel in DeKalb by 18,593 votes; last night, a much smaller 9,777 votes. George Chidi had interesting column the other day about trying to get Democratic votes in the heavily Democratic Pleasantdale Road precinct in north DeKalb (the only majority-black precinct in the DeKalb portion of CD 6)—interestingly in that precinct, turnout was just 34 percent of registered voters, compared to 50+, maybe near 60 districtwide) 1,245 votes were cast there out of 3,678 registered voters. Had the turnout rate there matched the district, you probably would have seen closer to 2,000 or 2,100 votes cast there. Perhaps anecdotal evidence that minority turnout in the district was not what was needed for Ossoff to win. June 21, 2017 11:03 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse As always, numbers and analysis appreciated. June 21, 2017 10:01 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Ya think? http://www.politico.com/story/2017/06/21/nancy-pelosi-fallout-georgia-special-election-239804 June 21, 2017 1:51 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope While I understand the thought process, this would be a yuge mistake for House Democrats. One of the few things Democrats have going for them at the moment is the GOP’s inability to govern in a coherent or competent manner. Compare what the Democrats in the House (and Senate) were able to accomplish in the first two years of the Obama Administration: Obamacare, stimulus package, Dodd-Frank, saved the American auto industry, 2 SCOTUS judges, Lilly Ledbetter, etc. with what Republicans have accomplished since January: Gorsuch and a halfway done Obamacare repeal. Granted, the GOP still has time to spare, but they’re well beyond the pace set by Democrats back in 2009-2010. That pace, by the way, can be attributed to Pelosi and Reid’s ability to control their caucus in the House and Senate respectively. I’m curious as to Eiger’s thoughts, but I have yet to personally meet a Republican who has spent time on the Hill and doesn’t respect Pelosi’s abilities as a leader of her caucus. Paul Ryan, by comparison, is struggling… bigly. The first-round of the AHCA was an absolute disaster politically and legislatively, and evidenced Ryan’s biggest shortcoming: he’s not that great at whipping his votes. Dumping Pelosi for an unproven replacement is a foolish move, especially when you know that whoever replaces her will just wind up being GOP ad-fodder anyway. June 21, 2017 2:19 PM Log in to Reply The Eiger Of course I want the democrats to dump Nancy. That’s mostly because she runs a tight ship and is able to herd her cats better than we are. There is no doubt that when she was speaker she was able to get things done. I envy that. She ruled with an iron fist that kept her folks in line. I respect that and wish my team had that ability. Many of our cats really are stupid and need herding. Paul Ryan is many things. Most of them good. He is not a Nancy Pelosi style leader. Meaning he tries to govern by consensus and not by force. You mention the AHCA in the House and I don’t disagree that it was a cluster, but it got through. Mitch runs the Senate better than anyone in recent history and the AHCA will get through and without all the mess that happened in the House. June 21, 2017 2:45 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Yeah, tried to specify that the first go-round at AHCA was a disaster… second was a much better go. To Ryan’s credit, the GOP caucus is full of a lot of “stupid cats,” something Boehner struggled with as well. I think Boehner was certainly more inclined to use force and threats to get his folks in line. Maybe Ryan should drop the nice guy shtick and start knocking some skulls together. I agree McConnell is one of the smartest and savviest majority leaders we’ve had in some time. I think that his tactics have done irreparable damage to the Senate as an institution but I’ll be darned if he doesn’t accomplish exactly what he sets out to accomplish. Schumer has impressed me so far as minority leader… watching these two maneuver on AHCA is going to be entertaining (destructive for America, sure) but entertaining. June 21, 2017 3:00 PM Log in to Reply MikeSilver Paul Ryan isn’t stuggling. He is accomplishing his goals as a Never-Trumper exceedingly well. When him as Speaker, there is no chance Pres. Trump’s campaign promises ever see the light of day. June 21, 2017 2:42 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 You want genuine obstruction? Here it is… http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2017/05/bombshell-ag-loretta-lynch-made-sure-fbi-investigation-hillary-clinton-didnt-go-far-video/ June 21, 2017 4:32 PM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse At least Benghazi is being given a break. June 21, 2017 10:05 PM Log in to Reply Add a Comment Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.