Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 28, 2014

Georgia Republicans Brawl for Conservative Mantle in Senate Debate

Georgia Republicans Brawl for Conservative Mantle in Senate Debate

Handel, left, and Perdue, right, debate for the Senate seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Georgia Republicans Brawl for Conservative Mantle in Senate DebateAUGUSTA, Ga. — Seven Republican Senate hopefuls stood before a mammoth American flag Saturday afternoon for the sixth of seven debates hosted by the state GOP.

In front of a couple hundred voters at the Columbia County Exhibition Center just outside Augusta, the candidates sought to fortify their conservative credentials on immigration, the Second Amendment, abortion and what can be done to improve confidence in the economy.

With so many candidates running for the state’s open Senate seat, none are expected to win a majority of the vote in the May 20 primary. They’re fighting to finish in the top two and advance to the July 22 runoff, when all bets are off.

Michelle Nunn, the likely Democratic nominee, wasn’t mentioned until the final three minutes of the 90-minute debate — symbolic of where the GOP’s focus still is in the race to replace retiring GOp Sen. Saxby Chambliss. Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel first uttered the Nunn name in her closing remarks, as she portrayed herself as the most electable conservative on the stage.

“I would just love to see Michelle Nunn try to drop the ‘war on women’ on me,” Handel said.

Handel is the only woman in the field of GOP candidates, five of whom have at least an outside shot at making the runoff. Former Reebok and Dollar General CEO David Perdue, the cousin of former Gov. Sonny Perdue, continually pitches himself as the outsider with the business background, grouping Handel in with the three members of Congress as the “career politicians.”

“Sometimes real change takes an outsider’s perspective,” Perdue said. “Fresh eyes, determination and a bucket-load of common sense. That’s what I will bring to the United States Senate.”

Rep. Jack Kingston, who has been among the top two in recent polls along with Perdue, said Republicans in the House have “shut down” Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and that he intends to take the fight to the Senate against Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. He sought to stand out from his House colleagues, Reps. Phil Gingrey and Paul Broun, but also pushed back against Perdue’s outsider mantra.

“I’m not going to apologize for being a long-term soldier fighting for the conservative cause,” Kingston said.

Gingrey highlighted his three decades as an OB-GYN to prove he was no professional politician, noting he has delivered 5,200 babies. On government regulations meant to curb climate change, Gingrey quipped that maybe the government should “put a surgical mask on the rear ends of every cow” to stop the release of methane.

Broun said he would “die for your right” to carry a firearm. In emphasizing the blame he puts on both parties for government overreach, Broun mentioned Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, twice, including pushing back against any attempt to pass an immigration overhaul and his vote against Boehner for speaker after the 2010 elections.

Two other candidates, Art Gardner and Derrick Grayson, made their marks on this debate, as well, but they have not raised much money and are unlikely to advance to the runoff.

The Republicans will face off once more next month in Columbus, Ga., before the primary.

 

Related stories: 

Michelle Nunn Waits Out Senate Primary

Jack Kingston Works His Base at Rural Cookout

A Low-Key Paul Broun Campaigns for Senate in Georgia

First Karen Handel TV Ad Features Sarah Palin

Westmoreland: Perdue ‘High School Graduate’ Comments ‘Stupid’

Jack Kingston Raised $1.1 Million in 1st Quarter

Gingrey Vows to Repeal Obamacare in First Term or ‘Go Home’

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  • YONATAN C

    When will the senate finally pass the much needed unemployment extension bill in the senate, for the more than two million families that were affected by the loss of benefits late last December? For more than four months now, the Republican senate has dragged their feet, and has made delay after delay to postpone passing the bill, in the hopes of making it just go away. In the mean time, these millions of families have been ruined financially, having been evicted from their homes, having their homes foreclosed upon, having to file personal bankruptcy, and being made homeless. These workers had worked many years in their jobs, and have paid into the system, believing help would be there for them if ever they needed it. However, they’ve been made to feel like social leaches, and social parasites, for asking for what they’ve already paid into from their weekly pay. While the congress quickly passed a foreign aid package for the Ukraine, worth billions of tax payer’s dollars, nothing has been passed to help these struggling families on a total verge of economical collapse, facing homelessness for lack of income to pay their living expenses. These millions of families have been used my the political parties as “political leverage”, and as “bargaining chips” to further one another’s political agendas. These people are not lazy or unwilling to work. The majority are older Americans with families to support, and mortgages to pay. These people have worked all of their lives and just happen to find themselves in one of the worst recessions in many years. How can the Republican party claim to represent “family values”, while making every effort to kill the extension bill that would help these families in the senate? I hope that the American people will have our own ” American Spring” like in other countries, and take back our country from these self-promoting, self-righteous, ego=filled, career politicians. We need to bring back the ” public servant” back into fashion once again. These politicians in Washington have totally become out of touch with common people which makes up 99 percent of this country. Shame on the Republicans for causing so much grief and pain to these millions of families without unemployment benefits. The American voters will not forget that in the 2016 elections.

    • mabramso

      This bill is not like the annual budget or a continuing resolution or debt ceiling extension, in that Congress does not actually have an obligation to pass this bill. Yes, in the short term, it would certainly be a great help to many hurting families to do so. So that said, it is just as easy to say that if Democrats want this bill to pass so much, they should be willing to compromise and sacrifice other forms of spending among the leviathan of government spending to make this happen, but they simply refuse to do it. Ergo, the stalemate. So shame on the Democrats as well.

      • Gene McManus

        mabramso:

        Clearly, you have absolutely no idea of or understanding of, macroeconomics. Yo seem to think government is a zero sum game: give some here, take some here. The curse of the two party system we have today is that the Republicans see governing as just a game, to be won, not as services to the citizens of this great country.

        Even the Egyptians, i ancient biblical times, understood macroeconomics better than you . During times of plenty, they stored up grain so that in times of famine, they would have something to eat. They didn’t give grain subsidies to the rich Egyptians, and take grain from the poor during times of famine.

        Likewise, governments borrow money to prime the economy during times of recession, and then raise taxes during good times, so as to build up surpluses.

        had you lived on a farm, you would understand this:in order to get the pump to work, one had to pour water down the pump: prime it. Then when water was flowing, the first water to come out went to the priming bucket, to refill it.

        You Republicans are dumber than a stone.

        And don’t do the knee jerk Republican come back by calling me a :liberal” I’m a card carrying Libertarian, but I understand macroeconomics.

        Gene PhD

        • mabramso

          For a guy with a PhD, you show surprisingly little understanding of how to read and interpret what is written. Nowhere in any of my comments have I made any statement having to do with economics. Why don’t you try rereading what I say before spouting off. This is PURELY a political exercise between the two parties. If you have a beef with one side’s economic beliefs, I suggest you direct your comments toward them. I made no argument one way or the other as to the merits of HAVING unemployment benefits — in fact, I think it is a very decent thing to do. My comments were directed at the pettiness of Washington and its inability and unwillingness to compromise, regardless of who is right or wrong on the issue.

          And if you are not a liberal, then don’t do the knee-jerk liberal thing and insult the intelligence of everyone who you think disagrees with you — especially with those who, unknown to you, have every bit of education (and even more) than you do.

          • Gene McManus

            mabraso:

            Your idea of “compromise” flies in the face of macroeconomics. You seem to think that, while people are starving and losing their homes, it’s ok to cut benefits, cut programs, cut support, in order to increase UI payments.

            Macroeconomics says, in agreement with the wisdom of the ancient Egyptians, that in hard times the government is the support of last resort.

            As to insulting the intelligence of those who disagree, that is the current GOP/TP mode of operation.

            So you have a PhD in English or in History: big deal.

            Gene

          • mabramso

            The compromise I suggested is purely political, not economic. It does not matter what you or I believe makes sense economically. And who said anything about cutting benefits? There are PLENTY of other places from which one can cut.

            And if you were really a libertarian, you would know that and be in favor of moving power and money out of Washington. But I suspect you are really a fiscal liberal and a social libertarian, which compared to a 21st century liberal is a distinction without a difference.

            I have a PhD in Computational and Applied Mathematics, with master’s degrees in CAAM, Operations Research, Applied Mathematics, and Aeronautical Engineering. My area of expertise is in nonlinear optimization.

          • Gene McManus

            Political compromise? The political problem is with the 80 members of the House who refuse to agree to anything. The Speaker long ago had a “compromise” worked out with the President, and he couldn’t get it through the House.

            You make a lot of assumptions, and make a lot of accusations. Just because someone has called your hand, and pointed out that you don’t know what you’re talking about is no reason to start making assumptions and calling names.

            Gene

            BS Engineering Physics,
            MA, mathematics, ABD mathematics,
            MBA, marketing and Finance
            PHD, Economics, specialty , oil and gas industries.

            I taught Ops Research for ten years; worked for both the government and industry doing IR research, radar systems design; have taught around the world: Japan, Lithuania, Ecuador, Slovak Republic

          • mabramso

            Actually, I think your second paragraph ranks as one of the most astonishing examples of Freudian projection I thing I have ever seen. I made a comment about the lack of compromise in Washington, and you automatically accuse me of knowing nothing about economics, when I never made ANY comment about economics, nor even hinted at it. You just assumed. AND you assume that I disagree with you about macroeconomics. I don’t know know if I do or not because I didn’t really read the rest of your first post because it was irrelevant to the point I was making. And now you make some comment about calling my hand. About what??? ALL I said is that the GOP wants a compromise — as an explanation of what THEY are seeking. I am not sure if I agree with their tactics or not (probably isn’t particularly productive), though I do understand their argument — which was really my only point — to explain THEIR political argument.

          • Gene McManus

            Mabramso:

            And just what is it that the GOP/TP wants to “politically compromise”? I suggest to you it’s economics, and what money gets spent where.

            Politics is ALWAYS about money, where it comes from (taxes) where it goes (spending) and how much (deficits and surpluses).

            I would also point out that cutting spending is equivalent to cutting jobs, so when the GOP/TP says they want to cut spending and increase jobs, they are contradicting themselves.

            This is getting tiresome: clearly, you’re not going to even attempt to understand what I’m saying,a dn I for the life of me can’t understand what you’re saying.

      • stevenharnack

        Passing bills isn’t a game. If Republicans have some proposals then they should put them in a separate bill and let them stand on their own merit, not as part of some blackmail scheme with the Americans people as the pawns.

        • mabramso

          No one thinks this is a game. The Republicans want things and the Democrats want things, and we have split legislative power. The founders deliberately set up this system, which requires compromise to get anything done. It’s been that way for over 200 years, and this is really no different than it’s ever been.

    • Layla

      This is baloney. You think you can blame all of this on the Republicans? We do we pass when this runs out? And for how many years?

  • Zenny Marvell

    I come here almost every day to read the news like probably most people here do that I don’t have anywhere else to tell anybody so I thought I’d tell somebody here because I’m so excited about what I’ve found. Google “Gold Trading Academy” these guys are really helping people learn how to trade, I never traded before in my life and now I’m making money doing and having a great time I can’t believe how much money you can actually make trading like this it’s amazing!

    • Gene McManus

      Or how much you can lose. Sounds like a sponsored promo to me.

  • Jose Rodriguez

    More dangerous to liberty than the notion of merit-based rewards is the notion of “distributive justice”; a notion that requires each of us be subjected to centralized control.

    • Gene McManus

      Jose:

      What are you raving about?

  • http://marketsharescorp.com/ Nick10

    “Seven Republican Senate hopefuls.” Who will Newt Gingrich endorse?

    • Vinny Gordon

      The one who buys the most Gingrich books.

      • http://marketsharescorp.com/ Nick10

        Agreed Vinny. Gingrich comic books.

  • http://marketsharescorp.com/ Nick10

    “Rep. Jack Kingston, who has been among the top two in recent polls, along with Perdue, said Republicans in the House have “shut down” Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and that he intends to take the fight to the Senate against Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.” Is this wishful thinking?

  • Vanbren5

    The two party system in GA is about to make its return. The diversity in Atlanta, Savannah, Macon, Columbus has been the tipping point. Georgia GOP doesn’t have a clue how to talk to minorites without seemingly condescending and insulting them.Trashing Obamacare in their commercials is not helping them because among minorities Obamacare is popular. White Liberals (who used to be independents) in Atlanta will never vote republican again and Deal is a drag on GOP much more than Obamacare is for Democrats. Deal is an incompetent crook and everybody knows it. He’ll be lucky to not be in prison by election day.

  • Yonatan YONATAN

    The worse cheaters currently in our country, are the politicians who have cheated the more than two million unemployed workers out of their extended unemployment benefits since last December. These politicians such as John Boehner, not only have cheated these poor unemployed families of their benefits, but have ruined their credit and financial lives in the process. These people have worked all of their lives, believing that the taxes being taken out of their weekly paychecks, may one day benefit them should they become unfortunately unemployed due to lay offs and downsizing. However after their 26 weeks were finished, they were left hung out to dry by the republican senators. Although billions of tax payer’s dollars recently was approved for the Ukraine, these families have received nothing but delay after delay, and promises after promises. Many of these families have lost their homes, have been evicted from their apartments, have become bankrupt, and homeless, While the politicians continue to play their “party politics” and using these families as bargaining chips and political leverage. It’s sad that the victims of the recession, which largely was the fault of the greedy banking and airline industries, amongst other large corporations, are made to feel that they’re asking for something that they really don’t deserve, such as financial help to support their families until they can find proper work again. Why does it seem that the government can always find the money to bailout companies, and for foreign aid, and personal raises, but not to help the most needy Americans in our country? We’re now going into 5 months of waiting and hoping for help to arrive in the form of an extension bill passing in the senate, and the Republicans are still not wanting to help these families. They have become so out of touch with the reality of the 99 percent of us in this country, that they have no clue of the amount of pain and damage that’s been caused with each passing day, week, and month that the extension isn’t passed for these families. My only solace is that in the next election in 2016, these millions of broken and hurt Americans will use their voting rights to vote all of these career politicians out from office for good. We need to bring back “public servants, not “public masters”.

  • Yonatan YONATAN

    The worse cheaters currently in our country, are the politicians who have cheated the more than two million unemployed workers out of their extended unemployment benefits since last December. These politicians such as John Boehner, not only have cheated these poor unemployed families of their benefits, but have ruined their credit and financial lives in the process. These people have worked all of their lives, believing that the taxes being taken out of their weekly paychecks, may one day benefit them should they become unfortunately unemployed due to lay offs and downsizing. However after their 26 weeks were finished, they were left hung out to dry by the republican senators. Although billions of tax payer’s dollars recently was approved for the Ukraine, these families have received nothing but delay after delay, and promises after promises. Many of these families have lost their homes, have been evicted from their apartments, have become bankrupt, and homeless, While the politicians continue to play their “party politics” and using these families as bargaining chips and political leverage. It’s sad that the victims of the recession, which largely was the fault of the greedy banking and airline industries, amongst other large corporations, are made to feel that they’re asking for something that they really don’t deserve, such as financial help to support their families until they can find proper work again. Why does it seem that the government can always find the money to bailout companies, and for foreign aid, and personal raises, but not to help the most needy Americans in our country? We’re now going into 5 months of waiting and hoping for help to arrive in the form of an extension bill passing in the senate, and the Republicans are still not wanting to help these families. They have become so out of touch with the reality of the 99 percent of us in this country, that they have no clue of the amount of pain and damage that’s been caused with each passing day, week, and month that the extension isn’t passed for these families. My only solace is that in the next election in 2016, these millions of broken and hurt Americans will use their voting rights to vote all of these career politicians out from office for good. We need to bring back “public servants, not “public masters”.

  • Barbie Dunn

    It takes money to mud sling…Grayson has raised the least amount of money but has gained the most momentum than ANY of the other 6 you mentioned. Grayson’s staff are completely VOLUNTEERS consisting of “We The People”. Grayson has been very frugal with the spending of donations, which by the way has come from individual donors verses the establisment elites, PACS or SUPER PACS. Watch how the other candidates are spending their donations. It’s a great indicator of how they plan to spend your tax dollars. Don’t be surprised if Grayson IS in the run off…he’s earning votes like crazy!!!!

  • Allison Kirkpatrick

    What a clown circus…

  • Osaka Williams

    No matter how egotistical or altruistic a person may be, the human needs that one can gauge accurately are limited to a small circle of influence and thus a tiny slice of civilization.

  • GraceD

    Kingston has voted against the ACA 50 plus times, shutting down the gov., refusing to vote for immigration reform, gun reform, Food stamp cuts.
    Gosh, I can’t list all the things he is against. (All the other GOP candidates, too.)
    I wonder what he/ & all Gop candidates are for? Does anybody know?

  • Fido Shery

    As new ideas, goods, and services percolate among us, the spontaneous social processes of trial and error help clarify their usefulness, determine their appeal, and identify needed improvements.

  • Jasmine An’deez

    While we may not think about them nor fully understand why we follow them in a particular instance, we tend to use the ways learned from the lessons of others’ experience.

  • Yonatan YONATAN

    I can’t believe that after ALL of this time, and after break after break, we still have no extension bill passed in the senate. This proves that the republican party never had ANY intention to pass this bill REGARDLESS of what concession was offered to them. These republican senators have shown their true distain for the poor people in this country. There can be no other explanation for their lack of total compassion and empathy with those in our country who are hurting financially in one of the worse recessions in many years. As a “FORMER” republican, I’m shocked and disappointed by the party that once was my own. I will NEVER EVER vote for a republican again in the future, and will encourage family and friends to do the same. The republican party has lost it’s way and are no longer relevant to it’s constituents. Just what kind of game are they playing here? When we have more than two million families out of work, without any benefits, struggling from day to day to keep a roof over their children’s heads, and food on the table, they’re playing party politics? These senators are heartless, soulless, bureaucrats, who do not care about you and me, but ONLY themselves and their party. We need to make a huge change in the next elections, and make sure that the republicans are never in charge again to do this sort of thing to helpless people

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