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Posts Tagged ‘GOP’

Blacks and Whites are in a world of trouble politically in the South; I don’t care what the election results say.  We are a house divided and it’s never healthy having political parties of one color. Never.

Steve and Cokie Roberts breakdown some amazing numbers and facts in their column recently but the essence is that Whites have left the Democrat Party in the South for the GOP and therefore the Dems are mostly Black.  The GOP in the South control most governorships and state houses but as of January, there won’t be a White Democrat in the U.S. House or U.S. Senate from the South.

http://www.albanyherald.com/news/2014/dec/11/steve-and-cokie-roberts-the-decline-of-the/?opinion

To me, elections could have been won if the people that the Clinton White House and the Obama White House sought to help would have simply voted and if the GOP far right wasn’t a well-oiled fear machine.

But, the reality is this: everyone better figuring out what is in our best interests and function accordingly.  It’s not in our best interests as southerners if GOP leaders win elections and the far right dares them to dialog with the rest of the population.  Perhaps, those people who Dems help who don’t vote will be forced into living differently when they realize that the people winning elections aren’t baby-sitting them. Hey, tough love or tough hate could get things moving.

Let me make it plain: the Black community needs to have a relationship with whoever is sworn into office.  Secondly, we need to have a frank discussion about living better without government being at the center of our universe.  Lastly, it might be time to sub-divide the interests of our community because we are spending too much time, energy and resources on a certain segment— a segment that needs everything but won’t vote.

Hillary Clinton would be a great president but the Dem Team better come up with a plan of substance.  If not, the door could be open for Senator Rand Paul or Governor Jeb Bush to secure the most productive selection of our community by finding something new and by telling the crazies on the Red Team to chill.  I hate to say it but our community might need to show numbers in the GOP primaries to select Republicans who are less nutty because that’s where the decisions are being made.

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The Democrats failed in the mid-term elections for reasons that were clear to most—except them.  I knew a year ago (no five years ago) that I would be writing these points today.

Money: Dems in Georgia raised and spent enough money for Nunn and Carter to win but they spent it in the wrong places.  Most voters are unaware of the cottage industry surrounding elections, an industry that centers on Buckhead in Atlanta.  First, you find a candidate who can raise tons of dollars with our friends then you hire our other friends to run the campaigns and still other friends to produce and do media buys for a zillion TV ads. How many people didn’t vote because they were weary from campaign ads?

The people inside this cottage industry won the election a year ago when they secured legacy candidates like Michelle Nunn and Jason Carter, rich fellows like David Perdue and sitting congressmen like Jack Kingston and a few others.  They had the money makers.

Better Money: If Nunn and Carter listened to seasoned cats like Sanford Bishop, they would have cut the media buy money by a third and put that money on old school street teams outside of Atlanta.  When the original Carter and Nunn were winning in the 1970s, the Dems knew to secure the support of old ball coaches, funeral directors, barbers, pastors and other community leaders.  These community leaders would put together teams of workers who made a few dollars.  Grandmothers would be so proud that their family members were involved and leading rallies.

I knew Michelle Nunn would make a great senator but her work history involving volunteerism concerned me from the start.  Black folks aren’t volunteering when they can see that you spent millions on T.V. ads.  They should have spent those millions on rally D.J.s and those free hot dog trucks.  Food and old school music will get the crowd out and that’s when you hook them with warmth.

Learning from Florida: There are two important lessons we can learn this election season from our neighbors to the south.  First, Gwen Graham won a U.S. House in North Florida by striking a correct balance between T.V. ads and community events.  Of course, she is from a famous political family but she rolled up her sleeves and pressed pressed pressed the flesh at dozens of free food events.  Hey, we like free food and Frankie Beverly music.  Graham took it home last week with a free Jimmy Buffet show…nice.

Secondly, Governor Rick Scott narrowly won reelection by running up the numbers in rural areas to counterbalance big Dem numbers in the Florida cities.  In Georgia, we have city Blacks in Atlanta, Blacks in the next five cities (Columbus, Albany, Macon, Savannah and Augusta) and rural Blacks.  Obviously, the plan was to get metro Atlanta to balance the GOP’s rural base.  But, those Blacks in Atlanta are real liberals who weren’t going to get pumped up to help Michelle Nunn while she ran from President Obama and ran to Governor/Senator Zell Miller.  Yes, Miller was a great Georgian back when but he spoke at the GOP national convention for Obama’s opponent. Black folks have memories.  On the other hand, rural Blacks are more conservative and more likely to support moderates like Sanford Bishop.  The Democrat efforts should have started by listening to Bishop.

Second guessing: The Democrat Party in Georgia spent the last year trying to get White Republicans to switch back…newsflash “They are gone.”  The party spent less energy getting the Obama base out.

Future: Michelle Nunn is still a big winner because she is position to be the Dem Senate candidate when Senator Isakson retires.  Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed would be the natural candidate but you know the cottage industry mentioned above must eat and they eat exceptionally well.  Again, getting money is more important than winning.

Black diversity: This blog started years ago as an effort to convince our community to take a better look at the details of politics and policymaking.  Both major political parties have incorrect approaches to us.  We need to take a hard look at the role political hope plans in how we carry ourselves because the parties and the government are indirectly hurting us.

Hillary 2016: Not so fast, we need to talk.

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The Democrat Party can’t be mostly Black nor should the GOP be all White.  This blog has been saying that for years.  First, I really don’t care too much for political parties because they are about power and control over good governing.  If we must have parties, the best ones look like America—they are comprised of a cross-section of peoples and groups or the leaders communicate with everyone.

The “All In With Chris Hayes” show on MSNBC is starting a new segment on race.  The promo for the segment features Georgian Julian Bond telling Hayes that Black elected officials need to give up some Black areas to neighboring districts to get White Democrats elected.  I love it because you don’t necessarily need Black politicians to serve Black folks (and a few Black Republicans might not be bad for understanding and informative purposes.)

If you take race off the table, congressional districts should be draw in a way where candidates from either major party can win—that keeps them on their toes.  The scary fact is that the GOP turned in the early 1990s into a party that often demands that its elected officials not listen to those with other points of view.  Look here, officials are paid by all taxpayers—not just the people that voted for them.  If you listen to a constant diet of vitriol from left or right zealots, you too would swear that the other side is the devil.

Let’s look that two congressional districts that makeup southwest Georgia.  For most of his time in the Georgia state house and the U.S. Congress, Sanford Bishop didn’t have a majority Black district.  He won by serving a cross section of people well.  Former Rep. Jim Marshall was one of the last southern White Democrats and his seat was important until he started slamming Obama and Speaker Pelosi to keep rural voters.  He had to go and he was replaced with a reasonable GOP candidate, Austin Scott.  Who knew that Scott would be one of the most conservative members of the House?

In theory during redistricting, members of congress don’t own districts but the General Assembly had no problem lumping more and more Blacks into Bishop’s district because that action made the three contiguous districts more and more GOP.  Bishop is a fighter and a true representative; he could represent anyone.  But, the Tea Party, Fox News and the far right talk radio has rural Georgia White twisted and negatively brainwashed so can you blame him for accepting more safety.  In southeast Georgia, Rep. Jack Kingston took all of Black Savannah to increase the GOP chances of taking Rep. John Barrow’s seat—Barrow is the last White Democrat in the U.S. House from the deep South.

Hey, Democrats would be fine if the people they helped legislatively would simply vote.  A surprisingly large number of GOP members of the state legislature have 25% or more Blacks in their districts but folks don’t vote.  The deciding factor for the elections in November might be the effectiveness of the Get Out the Voter efforts and that requires money—more cash should be put on the streets than on the airwaves.

http://www.msnbc.com/all-in/watch/all-in-america-behind-the-color-line-285576771633

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David Perdue, Jack Kingston

Georgia primary voters should think long and hard before next month’s runoff election.  I give myself credit for being a moderate Democrat who voted in the Republican primary because that’s where the action was in this generally red state.  So, I get to vote in the runoff and important questions must be addressed.  For the record, my interests focus on improving our state more that supporting either major political party because parties are mostly interested in power and control.

  1. Will Jack Kingston explain his comments about school kids working for free lunch?  Readers of this blog know I like Jack but that was some dirty dirty design to secure the nut vote.  Shall we humiliates children who were born into families of modest means?   Does the same apply to summer lunch programs?  Is that for high school and middle school only are will 7 year olds be mopping also?  I will say that Democrat leaders on the national level want Kingston in November because that one comment could tip the election by driving young voters to the polls.  “He wants my little sister to clean food trays!?”

 

  1. Are Michelle Nunn and David Perdue Obama-like in their newness?  I am about to hit you with a new angle on the Senate race: because Nunn and Perdue are new to the political arena they don’t have a record of statements and actions like Jack Kingston now and the Clintons in 2008.  Hillary Clinton might have made a better president (to some) in 2008 but we would have never known because the conservatives would have rallied behind Romney to keep the Clintons out of the White House.  Smart Republicans know that Perdue would be safer.

 

  1. How do we want the world to see our state?  I have a problem with President Obama.  While he is still my guy, he speaks of the USA that should be rather than the USA that is.  He see a fair, positive colorfree nation and that simply isn’t reality.  Ole Jack Kingston is similar to the average Georgian and me but doesn’t attract new industry.  David Perdue is a corporate baller who can represent an international city like Atlanta.  Chambliss and Isakson are balanced gentleman and Perdue seems senatorial like them.  Kingston has done a fine job representing southeast Georgia but we should remember that Port of Savannah funding might have been delayed because Jack couldn’t or wouldn’t get the crazies on the far Right to dial down the anti-Obama vitriol.  Perdue’s handlers are messing up because they should be spinning his time at Dollar General as a job creator in my community.  Oh, we love those baby Wal-marts on every corner in forgotten neigborhoods.

 

  1. Is Hillary Clinton reading Nunn’s putt?  In golf, players watch their playing partner’s putts to judge the greens and the line.  I think Team Hillary is watching the 2014 performance of moderate Democrat women candidates to craft their 2016 approach to the South and to gauge which states are winnable.  A Michelle Nunn win puts Georgia on the table for Hillary because some GOP women put gender over party—that’s why they should have selected Karen Handel.

 

  1.  Would the Democrats prefer Kingston or Perdue in November?  I think Dems want Kingston for the school lunch thing and the southern drawl.  Yes, I am country my dam self but Jack pours that southern twang on like Karo syrup to the delight of rural voters.  But, when Dem voters in Georgia six biggest cities pay attention in the fall,  it will be on and popping because he sounds like an overseer on Roots.

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You can’t think about public policy for the needy in the South without coming across several related Bible verses.  2 Thessalonians 3:10 says “For even when we were with you, this is what we commanded you: that if any would not work, neither should he eat.”

But, we should also consider Psalm 82:2-4 “How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked?  Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy.  Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked.”

Look, no one thinks of themselves as wicked and I am not calling anyone wicked.  However, some good people in politics and policy will do some somewhat devious things to win the battle and hopefully the war.

Everyone hates seeing hungry people and particularly hungry children.  Reasonable folks fairly state that those people got themselves into their circumstances with questionable life choices and personal responsibility.  It burns a taxpayer up to get into an old truck to leave a shift at a plant after standing 12 hours in steel-toed shoes then past grown fathers standing on the corner—guys who are too proud or crazy to do manual labor, pick crops or flip burgers.

The radio in that old pickup is blasting far Right talk radio in that worker’s ear.  “Your tax dollars provided those assistance checks, food stamps and free school lunches…you are sweating over a drill press while that bum plays video games all day in government assisted housing and sips malt liquor that was purchased with money intended for hungry kids.”  Dam, I am writing this stuff too easily…have I been watching Fox News.

We live in a free society; this isn’t North Korea or China.  Dictating better living isn’t legal.  So, children are born into struggling situations but Jesus wouldn’t want us to let them starve because their parents made bad choices.

The Farm Bill is the law that directs USDA programs and therefore seriously impacts the South.  Back when members of congress talked across the aisle, the farm bill supported commodity programs (which helped farm families) and provide food assistance programs (which helped farm families by creating  additional markets.)  Today, the far Right wanted to end most food assistance to force needy people to work and stop having kids they can’t afford.  Social media was a buzzed this week with the story of a seedy woman with 15 kids who upset that the government wasn’t doing more to help her.  Say what? I watch the news video about this family but paused it to say a little pray for those kids.

http://nation.foxnews.com/homelessness/2011/12/01/homeless-lady-15-kids-somebody-needs-pay-all-my-children

 

The school lunch/breakfast program ensures that needy kids have two meals a day five days a week during the school year.  Without those meals, the hospitals would be packed with malnourished kids and that cost would be astronomical.  Of course, hungry kids can’t focus on classwork so the labor force would be untrained and looking for ways to make fast money.  Fast money leads to prison at a cost of $35,000 a year.

U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston is the best House Republican from the Georgia but as a Senate candidate even Jack started tripping.  Kingston has represented chocolate city Savannah for 20 years, he was worked in chocolate city D.C. for the same 20 years and he has served during that time on the House Ag Committee and/or the Appropriations Sub-Committee on Agriculture.  Jack is UDSA food programs like the back of his hand.

If Kingston really said that needy kids should work at the school to pay off their free lunch, he was saying that to get Senate primary votes.  He knows that would never happen nor would he want that to happen.  So, poor people, people who grew up poor (Black, White and Brown) and those of us with compassion for the poor make up a bloc of voters who some in the GOP are simple writing off.

I watched the GOP Senate primary like a hawk and waited to see how much campaign would be done in the Black community.  Karen Handel had a wealth of supporters in the ATL and Jack has always shown the flag in every community in his district.  I never heard these two candidates making overtures to the Black community because there are few primary voters there.   For the record, I am a moderate Dem who voted in the GOP primary because that was where the action was.

Surprisingly, former Dollar General executive David Perdue was the only GOP senate candidate that my Black GOP friends said reached out to the non GOP Black community; he supposedly met with 32 Black pastors in the Albany area.  I like that right there.

I told those same GOP friends that they can mark my word:  the school lunch comment by Kingston would drive out thousands of occasional voters—it’s a hornet’s nest.  Voters sometimes vote for candidates and sometimes vote against candidates.  Remember, the confederate flag drama drove some people to vote against then Governor Roy Barnes….hell, some of them didn’t know David Perdue’s cousin Sonny at the time.

People who live off checks provide to assist kids are seedy.  Blue Dog Democrats supported Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich’s welfare reform that included work or training requirements.  As Justice Clarence grandfather taught him, public assistance makes people weak and dependent.

However, Democrat blood will boil when the T.V. ads run next fall featuring kids mopping schools as their friends laugh.  I think control of the U.S. Senate for the last two years of Obama presidency hang on that school lunch comment.  Oh, it’s going to be on and popping when child nutrition supporter Michelle Obama and Orpah see that YouTube video.   School lunch programs also teach kids about healthy food choice and that education leads to better eating as adults.

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demotivation.us_Scientists-Discovered-the-Formula-to-understand-women

As President Nixon would say, I want to make one thing perfectly clear: Nunns and Carters can’t win in Georgia in 2014 without Obamas and Clintons.  Jason Carter is running for governor and Michelle Nunn seeks an open U.S. Senate seat.

The exodus of the Georgia Whites from the Democrats to the Republicans was completed when Congressman Jim Marshall was defeated by Austin Scott.  Marshall tried to paint himself as a non-Democrat Democrat by running from Barrack Obama and then Speaker Nancy Pelosi.  He basically tried to become Sam Nunn.  Sir, I staffed in the Georgia congressional delegation that was led by Sam Nunn…I met Sam Nunn during my high school years…we went to countless Hill receptions with Senator Nunn.. you, Jim Marshall, was no Sam Nunn.  You don’t run from Obama and expect my communities support.

Like it or hate it, the formula for November 2014 Dem success in Georgia is:

(n + ca)/(o x cl)=w         or (Nunns + Carters) / (Obamas x Clintons) = wins

 

First, Jason Carter and Michelle Nunn are good and decent candidates on their own.  However, Georgia is a Red State because the Democrat base is so very shaky.  The four pillars of strength that support the Dem foundation nationally are two Obamas and two Clintons.  To be honest, Michelle needs to be a flying Nunn crisscrossing the peach state with Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama or both.  As Bernie Mack would say, “you don’t understand”…. Michelle Obama still has rock star status with Dem voters; she could pack a college football stadium with only three days notice.

The reality is this: rural Whites are a lock for the GOP but suburban voters of all colors are on the table if the Dems come out with a moderate agenda focused on job creation.  Who can deny that Bill Clinton’s economy plan left the nation in great shape.  On Meet The Press this past weekend, the question was “would Hillary run as a continuation of the Obama years or restart of the Clinton years?”  I say it would be the beginning of the Hillary years.

The far Right should stop tripping on Hillary Clinton’s age because she would take office at the same age as President Reagan and a few years younger than John McCain would have been if he won.

Michelle Nunn is on that chill style like her father and that won’t get out the bloc of voters that almost won Georgia for Obama.  That’s okay because unlikely voters have a lot to think about this year….the motivation is there.  They just need a little knowledge and wisdom from the blogosphere; we call it “that fire.”  Don’t sleep: Nunn’s senate race will be studied by Team Hillary as they plan to take parts of suburbia back from the GOP.

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This election year promises to be crazy and we should list some of the craziest aspects.   The two major political parties would be crazy not to seek two groups in the South.  Democrats need rural Whites and Republicans need a 5 to 10% of the Black vote.

The GOP seems more like an elitist club than a national party but changing demographics indicate that they should seek some minority support.  It’s crazy if the GOP future plans center around suppressing Black votes or hoping people of color stay home on election day.

Democrats would be crazy to think anything is happening in the South without considerable White involvement.  Georgia Senate candidate Michelle Nunn is the great White hope for the Dems and congressional candidate Vivian Childs should be the great Black hope for the GOP.

I don’t think southern legislatures fully realize how crazy upset people are with “Stand Your Ground’ laws.  Poor people would be crazy not to realize that Dems are trying to give healthcare to everyone.  You know that people without any health insurance simply use the emergency room as a doctor’s office and that is more expensive in the long run.

I am a southern gentleman and politics should never compromise southern gentility.  The way the GOP is starting to attack Hillary Clinton makes me cringe.  While I don’t care for the politics of Sarah Palin, I never said crazy things about her.  Can my friends on the right say the same thing about the Obamas and Clintons.

Georgia is one of the best place in the world for Blacks.  Only crazy politicians run for office here without seek support from Blacks and Whites.  The statements candidates make in the primary could serve as motivation for the other side in November.  If you don’t think Hillary Clinton can get enough women voters to win several Southern states, you must be crazy.  If you don’t think that Blacks won’t vote when Obama isn’t on the ballot, crazy should be your middle name.

Finally, you must be crazy to think that I am a Republican because I am voting in the GOP primary tomorrow.  I vote every time and want my vote to have the maximum impact.  In my area, the primary action is on the GOP side.  Plus,  Blacks shouldn’t pull all of our eggs in one basket or allow anyone to take us for granted.

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