Monday, July 03, 2006

Open thread

Per Hillary's request. Qualifying is done, primaries in two weeks. Talk about candidates. Here's a speculative set of questions. Who wins Athens, Taylor or Cox? Has Cox's support in Athens dwindled in recent weeks?


Anonymous said...

IMO: the excitement about Cox died when she tried to out-Taylor Taylor. dumb. note to Cox: if you're trying to beat somebody, don't try to be just like them.

Taylor's campaign has made the Cox campaign look silly. in fact, Cox's campaign has made the Cox campaign look silly. it's kinda sad because I like Cathy a lot but she doesn't look like she's ready to play in the big leagues, yet.

I like Jim Martin a lot for Lt. Gov. and I'll probably vote for him even though I don't think he'll win and he probably can't beat the Republican, anyway.

same thing for Sec. of State - I like Scott Holcomb but I doubt he'll make the runoff - I'll vote for whichever woman makes the runoff.

does it even matter who people in Athens vote for in statewide elections? we aren't even really in the state of Georgia when it comes to politics and I'm very, very proud of that!

how about that Solicitor General's race? I don't have a dog in this fight so, somebody try to convince me who to vote for.

hillary said...

Vote 4 Miss Angela, y'all.

I still feel like I'm wavering between Taylor and Cox, which probably says a lot about how close they are. I'm never undecided this close to an election. I'm leaning Cox a little though because of Taylor's not showing up to that debate and because she panders a little less on the HOPE scholarship.

Anonymous said...

In regard to the race for Solicitor General, Bill Overand seems to be the guy to beat. True-blue Dems seem to like him really well. The public hazes on races like this (and Lt. Gov, Ag Commis, etc.), so name recognition and cash are the big factors. Has there been a report on contributions and spending from these guys? A brief look at the ABH archives don't turn up anything.

In local races, it sure seems like Chasteen is everywhere. Just going about my business every day, he seems to pop up. Maybe he's sent out some clones. Are other mayor or commish candidates out there actively campaigning yet? Maybe having a statewide primary that they are not part of has everyone cooling their engines until afterward.

Anonymous said...

From the signs in town, it looks like Chisolm (sp?)is the one to beat for Solicitor.

hillary said...

Chasteen even had a card on the counter at Vine Street Cafe in the Iron Triangle. I was impressed.

Some of these dudes were at the Green Acres 4th of July parade, as covered on Athens World (not by me).

Anonymous said...

I have heard Chisholm has voted exclusively in democratic primary--other two have voted republican before--can someone check voter records?

Chisholm has support all over clarke county reaching all demographics--Overend just in Cobbham. --have yet to seen a Patterson sign?

hillary said...

Overend just in Cobbham

I believe that's what we call a load.

Anonymous said...

the sad thing is Cox and Taylor turning many off with the mud slinging. Coin toss at this point.

And I agree with Hillary, Overend not just Cobbham, Chisolm has Cobberham support also. Most noted is a very smart woman on Cobb Street, which is all I needed to make my pick. Knows her politics and worked in Solicitor's office for several years and knows all three candidates.

watch out not to get Chuck entered into Solicitor race since talking about Cobbham

Patrick Armstrong said...

My geography forces me to chime in about statewide matters...

My most important vote will be for Rev. Jim Nelson who (if y'all hinterlanders didn't know) is running for Congress from District 1.

I'm leaning pretty heavily towards Taylor as far as Governor is concerned. I just don't think Cox has the chops to run a campaign, much less the State of Georgia.

But y'all are up in the Mud-Slinging territory. I haven't seen any TV spots for either of them down in the Other Georgia.

I'll probably vote for Griffin Lotson for Lt. Governor and represent South Georgia outsiders.

I'll probably also vote for Walter Ray for Secretary of State, because he's taken the time to work Glynn County.

Majette for State School Super because she beat McKinney and I respect that.

hillary said...

I just don't think Cox has the chops to run a campaign, much less the State of Georgia.

Does one really imply the other though? Genuine question.

Publius said...

"I just don't think Cox has the chops to run a campaign, much less the State of Georgia.

Does one really imply the other though? Genuine question."

I think there's a relationship between the two. To run a successful campaign, you've got to build a coalition of supporters, and you've got to keep that coalition in line and on board. The same is true of trying to get a bill through the legislative process.

A good campaign also has to manage a budget, a decent-sized staff, etc. Cathy has had some turnover, and I don't agree with some of her campaign's decisions from a spending standpoint.

Another factor is message. Whether you're campaigning or pushing a budget through the legislature, you have to stay on message. I can tell you what Sonny's message is, and I can tell you what Mark's message is, but I can't tell you what Cathy's message is. So when Governor Cox is taking her legislative agenda to the people, will she present it well, or will she let the Republican majority define it for her?

But most importantly, how you campaign under pressure is a good indication of how you govern under pressure. To use Cathy as an example, since she sparked the discussion, I don't think her campaign has handled the pressure very well.

But as a practical matter, I'll offer the corollary to what what Patrick said. Not only is how you campaign a measure of how you'll govern, but you've got to win before you can govern at all. While I'm not sure that either Cathy or Mark can beat Sonny Perdue in November, looking at the two campaigns, I think Mark has a better chance from a nuts and bolts, well-run campaign perspective.

Patrick Armstrong said...

Well, I would venture to say that Perdue is very vulnerable in the same way Barnes was vulnerable four years hence: the educator's vote.

Sonny's greatest advantage was to run as a reformer and now he can't do that. Sonny's second greatest advantage was that he was running against Roy Barnes, and he doesn't have that this time either.

As far as a campaign is concerned, I think it ties in to leadership. I think the way someone runs a campaign is a very important view of their leadership style, and therefore governance style. If a candidate won't set the tone for their own campaign, and let staffers run things by committee, and don't set for themselves clear messages and goals to acheive, that tells me as a voter that they aren't very engaged or involved. I don't think that translates very well into leadership once you get in office.

hillary said...

Those are good arguments.

I'm not sure I know what Sonny's message is, though, other than "Sonny rulz!"

hillary said...

Next question: Is Greg Hecht's focus on children to the exclusion of all else creepy?

Publius said...

In a related note, I saw Jim Martin at a thing here in town last week, and I was pretty impressed.

Anyone else think Hecht is picking some awfully strange issues on which to focus? There's the lowering gas prices thing, wherein Greg is apparently going to kick down the door to Exxon's boardroom, DEA-style, and give those greedy oil company execs what fer. (I refuse to say he's going to "give 'em Hecht.")

And now, the mail piece featuring Greg, kids, and his plans to crack down on child porn. (Helpful hint: Never prominently feature your candidate's photo on a piece about child exploitation - people might get the wrong idea.)

How about health care, public education, protecting our dwindling water resources, etc? Too mundane to deserve being given Hecht?

Also, the mail piece itself is pretty badly designed. I don't think it even mentions which office he's seeking.

andyrusk said...

Gosh, it's good to see you guys moving again.
"Give 'em Hecht." HA! I snotted a little coffee right out of my nose on that one.
Running your campaign as a crusade against child porn IS awfully weird. He's picked a safe enemy, something unspeakably foul that... get this... doesn't really affect too many people on a day to day basis.

"A vote for me is a vote AGAINST chainsaw slayings!"

let the good times roll...

Anonymous said...

Re the SG's race, I think the signs seem to be pretty evenly split between Chisholm and Overend, with Overend clearly cashing in all his townie chips.

I know both of them and they're both good guys. Neither would be a disaster by any stretch. I will be voting for Chisholm, however.

Chisholm actually has put in time at the SG's office, so he understands the needs of that particular position (I would be afraid that Overend would see the SG's office as "DA-lite" and not realize that it's not just the little cases that go through the SG's office).

Further, I think that Overend is probably the better politician and is more charismtaic/personable, but I think that Chisholm is more of a quietly-get-the-job-done kind of guy. In my opinion, that's a quality that's very valuable in a position like SG. We don't need two grandstanding prosecutors in this town.

Anonymous said...

I would have to say, knowing all three candidates for Solicitor and having worked with all three, that both Patterson and Overend would be good for the job. Chisholm is rigid and uncaring in his approach to the job. He fails to identify with in any way the people he prosecutes, who he see as fundamentally other than himself or his Prince Avenue Baptist friends.

crewzin777 said...

I have also worked with/against all three and find the most recent "anonymous" comment to be way off the mark. To call CR "uncaring" in his approach to his job as a prosecutor is just plain ridiculous.

I'd say I've found CR to be the most professional and prepared of the three, in my dealings with them.

Also he has a great deal more experience trying DUIs than the other two. And many a criminal lawyer (pros. and defense) will tell you that trying DUIs can be touger than trying a murder case.

Anonymous said...

NO one who has tried both a murder and a dui, as i have, will tell you that trying a DUI is harder than a murder. That said, DUI is a specialized area of the law which is complex. Patterson and Chisholm both have experience in the area, so the experience factor should be a wash.

Anonymous said...


Murder trial = months of preparation, days of trial, a variety of types of possible forensic evidence, experts in various fields, intense and extensive investigation, etc., not to mention years of training before you do it right.

DUI trial = hours of preparation, up to a day of trial, typically one type of forensic evidence, one type of expert, almost no investigation (for the prosecutor), and a month or two of training before you do it right. All three candidates have the requisite training and experience to try the cases that come before the State Court (and Municipal Court). That is not the differentiator.

What I would respectfully suggest is that we try to elect the candidate with the best ability, and greatest likelihood to
- understand the community he is to represent
- understand the impact of the prosecutor upon that community
- understand the ways and means through which he can most positively influence that community
- understand who are part of the solution, and work with them to help improve issues like domestic violence, underage drinking, speeding in our neighborhoods,
- attract and retain prosecutors and staff who also understand these things, and can work for the people

crewzin777 said...

Anonymous #'s 1&2, that statement wasn't meant to be taken literally (kinda like "a DA could indict a ham sandwich if he wanted to"). It's just a comment I've heard many defense attorneys and prosecutors repeat to illustrate a point about DUI law.

DUI law is hyper-specialized and very different than trying other crimes (whether it be a theft crime or a violent crime). The law is also changing quicker in that area than just about any other IMHO. If one is not well versed, and up to date on DUI law, than trying one of those cases can be a painful experience. Especially if the prosecutor is dealing with someone like Rothman, Billy Healan, Greg Willis, or any of the numerous other skilled DUI defense attorneys who come to Athens.

And the experience factor is not a wash. Flat out CR has much more experience in prosecuting DUIs than the other candidates. I'm not going to give any specific examples of why I have this opinion. I'm trying very hard to talk about the positives of the candidate I support without speaking negatively about the others (and pretty much impossible to do that).

Anonymous said...

I know you didn't mean for it to be taken literally, and you are correct about the specialized nature of those prosecutions, and the importance of there being ASG's capable of trying those cases.

My response was more to indicate, IMHO, that this is not the prime yardstick voters should be looking at for this office. My reasoning is that:
1) 95% of DUI's are not terribly complicated, from either side .
2) This office, and its relationship with the community is about much, much more than DUI's ...

Its about people. I think that's what A#1 (the post before your previous post) was suggesting. Those comments might have been a bit over the top, but the concern is real.