Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp (right) listens to public comment earlier this month at a meeting for the State Election Board. Kemp has come under fire for how the state tracks voter registration applications, although he has defended the system and called a recent lawsuit on the issue “frivolous.” KENT D. JOHNSON/KDJOHNSON@AJC.COM
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
A Georgia judge declined Tuesday to intervene in Georgia’s voter registration process, letting stand existing measures by state and local election officials to help applicants ahead of the Nov. 4 election.
The decision came after a two-hour hearing Friday, during which Fulton County Superior Court Judge Christopher Brasher seemed skeptical of a lawsuit that sought what he called an “extraordinary legal remedy.”
“What does the law require that they haven’t done?” Brasher asked during the hearing. “That’s what I’m a bit fuzzy about here.”
The national Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights filed the suit Oct. 10, alleging tens of thousands of voters who it believes registered properly have been lost in the system.
The group wanted court-ordered mandates, including for the state and three Georgia counties to hire more staff to process applications, investigate where they went or for a court-appointed monitor to issue recommendations.
State and county officials, however, said they have already processed all applications sent to them by the state’s Oct. 6 registration deadline. They also argued that plans already existed to assist voters, including working with local applicants to verify their information or allowing voters to cast provisional ballots on Election Day pending verification of their identity.
In case you haven’t seen the plethora of commercials that link Democratic candidate Michelle Nunn to President Barack Obama, then here’s another one for your viewing pleasure from GeorgiaOne:
This week’s Courier Herald column:
One of the worst parts of modern campaigns is that by the time the “campaign” is supposed to be effective, most of us who have been in, around, or through it have forgotten what the point of it is. Frankly, a lot of us are tired. We’re cranky (even more so than usual). And we’re so over hearing the same stump speeches – many of which were devoid of substance the first time we heard them months ago – that you may have to forgive us if these campaigns are beyond yesterdays news.
And yet, they are not. For the first time in well over a decade, this week matters.
The polls are close. The big-ticket races are generally considered to be within the margin of error. Worse, there’s honest and open debate as to what a proper polling model for Georgia is.
The Democrats haven’t managed a seriously contested statewide campaign since 2002. The population and demographics of who we are, and who our voters are, are already quite different since then.
Add to that the vast amount of outside money being spent by both Democratic and Republican affiliated groups, and….we just don’t know. Despite this campaign cycle beginning on a cold January morning almost two years ago when Saxby Chambliss announced his retirement, no one really knows what to expect when we start counting the votes on November 4th.
The closest we can get to consensus is that we’re likely to be counting votes again, but that consensus divides quickly if we’re talking about voting again for Governor on December 2nd or for U.S. Senate on January 6th. Or, help us all, both.
So…we don’t know. Which is what makes this week – This one that the insiders are already tired of – matter. The votes will all be counted next Tuesday. But most likely, these races can be won or lost this week.
You see a bit of a sense of urgency – coupled with some subtle new messages – coming from the campaigns. David Perdue seems to be landing a new talking point effectively. In a Friday evening rally kicking off a week long statewide bus tour, the race seemed slightly less about retiring Harry Reid as Majority Leader and more about promoting Johnny Isakson to Chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee. The message was echoed in a GPTV/Atlanta Press Club debate Sunday evening.
Michelle Nunn has been balancing her attack ads with those featuring her former Senator father. Perdue was able to circumvent much of the Republican establishment by running commercials aimed at older voters with an “outsider” message. Perhaps part of the closeness of this race can be attributed to the fact that large number of these voters remember Senator Nunn fondly, and also see his daughter as an “outsider”.
The Governor’s race continues to spotlight the issue of education. Jason Carter continues to talk about the need for an additional $1 Billion per year of spending, but when pressed by Governor Deal and panelists during the debate, sources of the funds for the long term were mostly confined to the ever illusive “waste”.
Deal, for his part, wanted to know what bill Carter had sponsored during his Senate tenure that would have addressed these unspecified cuts to get more money to education. Deal has spent the last couple of weeks with direct counters to Carter’s pledges and plans. The polls seem to have nudged in Deal’s direction. And yet, they remain close.
So the point of all this is this: No columnist, pundit, poll, or other “expert” knows what will happen on November 4th. The candidates are making their closing arguments. For the first time in a long time, they matter.
A lot of the insiders like to deride the “undecided voter”, wondering how it could be possible to be undecided after millions of dollars of ads and years of campaigning. Many are undecided out of rational ignorance. There’s no reason to turn into these scripted games, listen to poll tested sound bites, and pick a team. Often, “undecided” doesn’t mean between the candidates, but whether to bother to vote at all.
This year, it’s close enough that the undecided voters may well choose to engage. For them to do that, however, the campaigns will need to have their best week possible. They’ll have to do that while they too are tired, cranky, and ready for it to be over.
This is a week for closing arguments. And for this to be over with on November 4th, the closing arguments will need to matter.
Two Pennsylvania teachers are fighting the state’s largest teachers union for interfering with their charitable giving.
The teachers allege in a suit filed in district court that the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) is blocking them from exercising their right to donate union dues money to charity. Pennsylvania allows religious objectors to cut ties with unions as long as they donate an equivalent agency fee payment to charity. That money is given to the union, which is then supposed to send it to the charity of the teacher’s choosing.
Jane Ladley, an elementary school teacher for 25 years before retiring in June, said that the union prevented her from directing her $435 donation to a scholarship fund to teach high school seniors about the Constitution because it was “too political.”
“Since when did the Constitution become political? It’s a legal document that is the foundation of this country,” Ladley said. “I had to have their approval for where my money went, one that would fall in line with their thinking.”
Ladley, 61, began teaching in the 1970s and was a member of the teachers union for seven years. She put her career on hold to raise her children before returning to the workforce in 1996. This time, she refused to join after discovering that the union “funneled money to Planned Parenthood.”
“As a Christian and as a mother, that was abhorrent to me,” she said.
Union officials rejected her decision then sent her a list of a dozen large charities, many of which spend thousands of dollars each year on political lobbying. She said the union is still trying to impose its agenda on her.
“They can give their members’ money to the politics and the agenda that they think are correct, yet I cannot,” she said.
The PSEA did not return request for comment.
The union contends that it has every right to monitor the donations because Ladley’s donations represent a debt owed to the union and, thus, union property.
“Pennsylvania’s law imposes an additional procedural requirement in escrowing fees of religious objectors during the pendency of the feepayer and union’s discussion on a mutually-acceptable, nonreligious charity to receive the fees,” the union said in a legal brief. “A fair share fee represents a private debt obligation owed by a nonmember to a union who performs bargaining services on the feepayer’s behalf.”
Nate Bohlander, an attorney with the non-profit Fairness Center who is representing Ladley, said that the union may handle the money, but that doesn’t entitle them to ownership of the money, just as a person’s bank deposit belongs to the depositor. The union’s actions, he said, are meant to have a “chilling effect” on the 200 Pennsylvania teachers who opt out of the union.
(To see entire article, click on to link at bottom of page.
David Perdue Rally in Dawsonville on Tuesday the 28th
Forward to your friends in the area
And Vote. Yes, you have the privilege of voting in this country!
Please join me at the David Perdue Rally in Dawsonville at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday the 28th. We need to provide strong support for this FairTax advocate as he moves closer to becoming Georgia’s next U.S. Senator and FairTax co-sponsor in the U.S.Senate.
Tuesday, October 28h
Dawsonville Gun and Pawn
5711 Georgia 53
Tom Brown, Ph.D.
Chief Operating Officer
Georgians for Fair Taxation
It’s noteworthy that the President is saving his surprise until after this year’s elections. And it’s difficult to know if he can be stopped, regardless of who wins in November.
Yet when two major, long-standing American media outlets – one leaning to the left, the other leaning to the right – both publish news and analysis detailing lies and corruption with President Barack Obama’s plan to grant amnesty to tens of millions of illegal immigrants, actual American citizens should take notice.
First, there is the left-leaning USA Today. An October 22nd headline in the Gannett-owned national newspaper read “U.S. misinformed Congress, public on immigrant release.”
But read beneath the headline, and a stark reality becomes apparent: it wasn’t the “U.S.” that did the misleading. Specifically, it was the current occupants of the executive branch of the U.S. government – President Barack Obama and staffers within his administration- that misrepresented facts about illegal immigrants flooding into the country.
The matter dates back to early 2013 when the Obama Administration ordered some 2,200 illegal immigrants to be released from U.S. jails. Officials within the Administration insisted that, because of the so-called “sequestration” government funding cuts, prisoners needed to be released from jails and it just happened to be the case that the 2,200 illegal immigrants that were turned loose were actually no danger to Americans. Their only “crime” was entering in to the U.S. without appropriate “documents.”
But now, USA Today reports that they have secured documents demonstrating that the Obama Administration’s assertions were false In the report, journalist Brad Heath writes:
“The records, obtained by USA TODAY, show immigration officials released some undocumented immigrants who had faced far more serious criminal charges, including people charged with kidnapping, sexual assault, drug trafficking and homicide.”
President Obama’s plan for an Executive Order to mandate amnesty for illegal immigrants
In the same week, the right-leaning “Washington Times” newspaper published a striking editorial detailing President Obama’s plan for an Executive Order to mandate amnesty for illegal immigrants, a plan to be initiated without a vote from the U.S. Congress and scheduled to happen after November’s midterm congressional elections. According to them, the Obama Administration is planning for upwards of 30 to 40 million new immigrants to be legalized with a stroke of the President’s pen, a move that will expand the nation’s population by a whopping 10%.
As the Washington Times notes:
“In economic terms, importing millions of unskilled workers creates competition for the diminishing number of available jobs. Combine a flooded job market with the Democratic proposals for a doubling of the minimum wage to $15 an hour, and millions more American citizens will be without a job. Those who do have jobs will pay to provide federal freebies, from Obamaphones to ObamaCare, to the formerly illegal aliens now with a green card.”
This news will continue to be ignored. Many entrepreneurs in the nation’s tech epicenters of Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Boston – all cities with lots of global commerce and where employment and wages are mostly pretty good – will remain oblivious to the President’s undermining of multiple national interests, while others will continue to write big checks in exchange for the opportunity to get their photo taken with Mr. Obama at a political fundraiser. They will remain oblivious to why the President and his policies have fallen drastically out of favor with a broad base of the American people, even as he becomes an untrusted embarrassment internationally and undermines the U.S. dollar.
Similarly, American business media outlets – almost all of which are headquartered on either the right or left coast and generally don’t care to observe much beyond the Silicon Valley or Wall Street – will continue to revel in Microsoft’s new earnings report, or Apple’s recent iPhone successes (has anybody noticed how Apple financed their recent stock buy-back with borrowed cash?), while pretending that immigration is an irrelevant subject. Instead of thinking critically and holistically about the state of the country, they’ll go-on regurgitating the latest press releases from the Small Business Administration detailing all the new small business lending initiatives, and essentially “call it all good.”
But for the rest of us trying to do business in “flyover country” – the forsaken regions of the U.S. in between L.A. and Manhattan and in faraway lands like Hawaii and Alaska – a flood of immigrants actually matters. It means, among other things, more strain on already burdened city, county and state-funded law enforcement and social services agencies; a greater risk of crime and litigation perpetrated against local and regional business ventures; and fewer jobs for American workers, including many 20 to 30-somethings who hold college degrees and mountains of college loan debt, but can’t find their way in the labor market even under current conditions.
Will American workers and business owners demand a government that serves them rather than enslaving them – or is it already too late?
“Don’t let anybody tell you that it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs.” BY: Washington Free Beacon Staff
At a Democratic rally in Massachusetts, Hillary Clinton’s attempt to attack “trickle-down economics,” resulted in a spectacularly odd statement.
Clinton defended raising the minimum wage saying “Don’t let anybody tell you that raising the minimum wage will kill jobs, they always say that.”
She went on to state that businesses and corporations are not the job creators of America. “Don’t let anybody tell you that it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs,” the former Secretary of State said.
Clinton’s comment will likely be used frequently to attack her as another big-government Democrat. She is seen by many as already running for president in 2016.
Via The Hill, the Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund is endorsing David Perdue in his race against Michelle Nunn. Expressing concern about a Democratically controlled Senate, TPP President Jenny Beth Martin urged the group’s supporters to do all they could to support the GOP candidate in the race, where recent polls have him trailing Nunn.
The endorsement is the latest indicator the Tea Party, once staunchly at odds with the establishment wing of the Republican Party, is coming around to working with their former foes in order to win back the Senate.
Conservatives have long expressed wariness of Perdue for his support of the financial bailout and support for health care reform at the federal level, and Georgia Tea Party groups backed Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) over him in the primary runoff.
The endorsement comes after the Tea Party Patriots sent an email on Wednesday to supporters asking them to weigh in on the race. Martin said that supporters’ top priority is keeping Harry Reid from controlling the Senate.
In a radio interview with Atlanta’s V-103, President Obama said a victory for Democratic Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn is critical if he is going to continue advancing his agenda.
“I’ve got a lot of stuff left to do in these last two years. … There are some very specific things that we could do to give people some help right now,” Obama said, citing issues such as increasing the minimum wage.
The only way to achieve those goals, Obama noted, was if he had a Congress “that shares that vision” and includes someone like Nunn.
“These last two years I want a Congress that does work, and the only way I can do that, even though I am not on the ballot is to make sure that our people turnout to vote. … And when we do, we win. And no place is a better example than in Georgia. Michelle Nunn will win the Senate if there’s high turnout among Democrats. And if there’s low turnout, or just ordinary turnout, then she won’t win. And if Michelle Nunn wins, that means that Democrats keep control of the Senate. And that means that we can keep on doing some good work.”
The full audio of Obama’s comments can be heard in the below video from V-103.
Democrats have attempted to distance themselves from President Obama, but in recent weeks Obama has made that increasingly difficult.
According to Real Clear Politics average, Nunn is ahead of her Republican challenger, David Perdue, by 0.4 points.