Issues: Elections

Georgia election: Democratic voters back health and transit spending

Georgia election: Democratic voters back health and transit spending

Voters in the Georgia Democratic Party primary election Tuesday showed overwhelming support for Medicaid expansion and substantial mass transit spending. Democratic Party voters also backed banning bump stocks and creating an independent commission to redraw state legislative borders. The four non-binding ballot questions gauged voters’ opinions for the Democratic Party to consider in future...
Georgia Democrats test a more liberal comeback strategy

Georgia Democrats test a more liberal comeback strategy

Georgia Democrats took a dramatic turn toward progressive policies in last week’s votes, part of a broader realignment that will reshape November’s election by shifting the party’s philosophy away from decades of centrist appeals. The sharp tack to the left was headlined by Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee for governor, who maintained that trying to appeal to moderate GOP voters...
A widening gulf on gun policy shapes Georgia races after primary

A widening gulf on gun policy shapes Georgia races after primary

There is no greater divide in Georgia politics than the one over guns. And the primary results this week showed that the clash over firearms policies will only intensify on the road to November’s elections. Democrats rewarded candidates up and down the ballot who broke with party tradition and called for new gun control measures. And they overwhelmingly backed a candidate for governor, Stacey...
Why Georgia’s runoff elections won’t be held until late July

Why Georgia’s runoff elections won’t be held until late July

Georgia voters have to wait nine more weeks for runoffs to settle the outcome of Tuesday’s primary election. The runoff election will be held July 24, when voters will decide on the Republican Party nominee for governor, lieutenant governor and secretary of state. The main runoffs on the Democratic Party ballot are races for U.S. Congress and state schools superintendent. Why do runoffs...
Democrats in Georgia congressional runoffs make Trump an issue

Democrats in Georgia congressional runoffs make Trump an issue

The Democratic primary runoffs for the Atlanta area’s two most closely watched congressional elections will feature a pair of women, a first-generation American and a South African immigrant campaigning on hot-button issues that play to their base: access to health care, gun control, immigration and equal pay for men and women. At the same time, the contenders — first-time candidates Kevin...
Podcast: Immediate reactions to the 2018 Georgia Primary results 

Podcast: Immediate reactions to the 2018 Georgia Primary results 

On the latest episode of the Politically Georgia podcast, host Greg Bluestein and AJC Washington correspondent Tamar Hallerman share immediate reactions and next-day analysis following Georgia’s 2018 primary elections. Bluestein and Hallerman discussed the primary results for races like governor, lieutenant governor and secretary of state as well as races in the 6th and 7th Congressional Districts...
Georgia Republicans face infighting while Democrats work on unity

Georgia Republicans face infighting while Democrats work on unity

Georgia Republicans braced for what’s sure to be a combative nine-week runoff for the state’s top office, while Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams quickly began to rally her party around her after emerging relatively unscathed from her primary. Abrams won a spot on the national stage after notching a 53-point victory over former state Rep. Stacey Evans, taking a big step toward becoming...
3 Republican primaries for Gwinnett House seats heading to runoffs

3 Republican primaries for Gwinnett House seats heading to runoffs

Three Republican primaries for Gwinnett-based state House seats appear headed for runoffs.  By Georgia law, if one candidate in a race does not get at least 50 percent of the vote, that race heads to a runoff between the top two vote-getters. This year, primary runoffs are scheduled for July 24.  The following House hopefuls from Gwinnett will be on the GOP ballot again:  In Duluth-based...
Senate minority leader holds off Democratic challenger

Senate minority leader holds off Democratic challenger

Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson narrowly held off his first primary challenger in 16 years Tuesday, sending him back to the chamber for his ninth consecutive term. Henson received 50.42 percent of the vote, with his opponent, Sabrina McKenzie, falling just short with 49.58 percent. The two were separated by only 115 votes, according to unofficial results from the Secretary of State&rsquo...
Georgia Election 2018: Voters kick out 8 incumbents from Legislature

Georgia Election 2018: Voters kick out 8 incumbents from Legislature

Voters booted eight lawmakers from the Georgia General Assembly in Tuesday’s primary elections. Four Republicans and four Democrats were ousted as voters chose new blood over experience. The incumbents’ defeat contributes to election-year turnover at the Georgia Capitol, where Republicans hold almost two-thirds of the House and Senate.  Another 20 seats will change hands because...
Georgia Democrats back Abrams for governor; GOP headed for runoff

Georgia Democrats back Abrams for governor; GOP headed for runoff

Former state House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams gained the Democratic nomination for Georgia’s top office on Tuesday, winning a bitter primary in her quest to become the nation’s first black female governor. Her opponent in the Republican race is still up in the air: Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle will face Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp in a July runoff. Abrams leveraged a sweep of national...
Shafer, Duncan head to runoff; Amico advances in lieutenant governor race

Shafer, Duncan head to runoff; Amico advances in lieutenant governor race

Sarah Riggs Amico will have to wait two months before she learns who she will face in November’s race for lieutenant governor.  The Marietta Democrat beat out small-business owner Triana Arnold James in Tuesday’s primary election. Both women were first-time candidates.  State Sen. David Shafer and former state Rep. Geoff Duncan will face off again in July as they battle for the...
Georgia secretary of state election: Raffensperger, Belle Isle and Barrow advance

Georgia secretary of state election: Raffensperger, Belle Isle and Barrow advance

The Republican race for Georgia secretary of state appears to be heading to a runoff between state Rep. Brad Raffensperger and former Alpharetta Mayor David Belle Isle. Meanwhile, former U.S. Congressman John Barrow defeated two other Democratic Party candidates for secretary of state. Barrow won a majority of votes, meaning he advances to the Nov. 6 general election without a runoff. FOLLOW...
Democratic primaries headed toward runoffs for key metro House races

Democratic primaries headed toward runoffs for key metro House races

The Democratic primaries for the Atlanta region’s two most closely watched congressional elections appeared headed toward extra innings, based on Tuesday’s early voting results. In Georgia, election runoffs are triggered when no single candidate captures more than 50 percent of the vote. In the state’s 6th District — which includes parts of Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton counties...
Georgia Rep. Betty Price wins Republican primary against Jere Wood

Georgia Rep. Betty Price wins Republican primary against Jere Wood

State Rep. Betty Price fended off a Republican Party challenge from former Roswell Mayor Jere Wood during Tuesday’s primary election. Price, a retired physician, came under fire from Wood after she made fun of Democratic women and questioned whether HIV patients should be quarantined. Price has said her comments regarding an HIV quarantine were taken out of context....
Dozens of seats in Georgia General Assembly in play after primaries

Dozens of seats in Georgia General Assembly in play after primaries

Dozens of seats in the Georgia General Assembly are up for grabs this year after Tuesday’s primary election, as eight incumbent legislators were ousted and 20 open seats created opportunities for newcomers. Many races will be decided in November’s general election, when the winners of the Republican and Democratic primaries will face each other. Four Republicans and four Democrats...
Georgia Election: Cagle, Kemp headed to runoff for GOP nomination

Georgia Election: Cagle, Kemp headed to runoff for GOP nomination

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle will face Secretary of State Brian Kemp in a July runoff, after the two emerged as the top finalists Tuesday in the five-man race for the Republican nomination for Georgia governor.  Whoever emerges from the grueling nine-week runoff will face a November showdown against former House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, a competition that will test whether the state is...
Ga. representative known for ‘no’ votes survives Republican opposition

Ga. representative known for ‘no’ votes survives Republican opposition

A north Georgia Republican who votes “no” more than any other state legislator held on to his House seat Tuesday despite opposition from powerful members of his own party. State Rep. Matt Gurtler, a 29-year-old general contractor from Tiger, defeated Mickey Cummings, a farmers market manager, in Tuesday’s Republican Party primary election for House District 8...
Georgia Election: Stacey Abrams wins Democratic primary

Georgia Election: Stacey Abrams wins Democratic primary

Former House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams won the Democratic nomination for Georgia’s top office on Tuesday, defeating ex-state Rep. Stacey Evans and advancing her quest to become the nation’s first black female elected governor.  She will face one of two Republicans in November in the race to succeed Gov. Nathan Deal, a competition that will test whether the state is truly competitive...
Georgia Election 2018: Polls close in primaries for governor and more

Georgia Election 2018: Polls close in primaries for governor and more

The votes are in for Georgia’s primary election for governor, Congress and state officials. Precincts closed across the state at 7 p.m., and results will come in through the night. Election officials generally reported light turnout, with a few exceptions in some areas. The governor’s race was at the top of both Republican and Democratic ballots, with the winners of the primaries...
The forces that will decide Georgia’s primary election

The forces that will decide Georgia’s primary election

Every state office is up for grabs this year in Georgia, and Tuesday’s primary will be a big first step in determining who will fill them. Republicans now control every statewide office and have a commanding majority in the Georgia Legislature. But Democrats hope a tide of new energy — along with frustration with President Donald Trump — will power the party to heights it hasn&rsquo...
Candidates make last pitches on final day before Georgia primary

Candidates make last pitches on final day before Georgia primary

The candidates for Georgia governor hit the roads, hopped on airplanes and unleashed a final volley of ads Monday on the eve of a primary vote that likely won’t settle what’s been a costly and grueling competition. The five Republicans and two Democrats scrapping for their parties’ nominations fanned out across the state to make a final pitch in a race that’s featured escalating...
Candidate appeals disqualification from Georgia election over citizenship

Candidate appeals disqualification from Georgia election over citizenship

A candidate for the Georgia House of Representatives who became a U.S. citizen last year is appealing her disqualification from this year’s elections. Maria Palacios, a policy analyst for the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials, filed a lawsuit Sunday to overturn Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s decision that she wasn’t eligible to run for the Gainesville-area...
Georgia Primary: Early voting turnout recovers from slow start

Georgia Primary: Early voting turnout recovers from slow start

Early voting turnout for Georgia’s primary election almost reached the same level as two years ago, according to figures released Monday by the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office. A total of 320,443 voters cast ballots during the three-week advance voting period, compared to 329,043 in 2016. A total of 6.1 million active voters are registered in Georgia. Election Day for the Democratic...
Georgia 2018: Cagle braces for runoff ahead of Tuesday’s primary  

Georgia 2018: Cagle braces for runoff ahead of Tuesday’s primary  

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle downplayed his chances of winning Tuesday’s primary outright and said his campaign was quietly preparing for a likely runoff against Secretary of State Brian Kemp or former state Sen. Hunter Hill. As he embarked on an eight-stop flyaround Monday to the state’s largest media markets, Cagle said it would be “very challenging” to emerge with the majority-vote...
Georgia Election: Catch up on the races before voting Tuesday

Georgia Election: Catch up on the races before voting Tuesday

Still haven’t decided how to vote in Tuesday’s primaries? Here’s what you need to know before casting your ballot. The main event on Election Day is the race for Georgia governor. Voters will also decide on statewide offices, Congress, judges and local representatives. On the issues: Where the candidates for governor stand  Stacey Abrams (D): National attention...
Democratic candidates for governor debate HOPE changes

Democratic candidates for governor debate HOPE changes

The two Democrats vying to make history as Georgia’s first female governor tangled over their roles in a 2011 deal to overhaul the HOPE scholarship in a televised debate Sunday, each framing herself as an unapologetic advocate for young people seeking educational opportunities. Stacey Evans and Stacey Abrams also extensively litigated the other’s record in the state Legislature, including...
Republican gubernatorial candidates spar in final debate before vote

Republican gubernatorial candidates spar in final debate before vote

The five Republican candidates for governor traded barbs Sunday on gun rights, “religious liberty” and rival tax plans in their final debate ahead of the May 22 primary election. In a televised matchup hosted by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Channel 2 Action News, the Republicans all hardened their stances on school safety and access to firearms two days after a 17-year-old student...
Audio: Analysis of the final primary debates in Georgia's 2018 governor's race

Audio: Analysis of the final primary debates in Georgia's 2018 governor's race

The Democratic and Republican candidates for Georgia governor faced off on Channel 2 Action News in the final debates before Tuesday’s Election Day. On the latest episode of Politically Georgia, host and AJC political reporter Greg Bluestein, WSB Radio’s Condace Pressley and AJC Deputy Managing Editor Leroy Chapman Jr. break down each gubernatorial debate and discuss what they mean...
Big changes in Georgia politics at stake in Tuesday’s vote

Big changes in Georgia politics at stake in Tuesday’s vote

The race for Georgia governor reaches a climax Tuesday when voters decide contests between two Democratic women striving to redefine their party’s philosophy and five GOP rivals dueling each other over their conservative chops. The seven candidates combined have raised more than $22 million and spent much of it in the final stretch, which has featured an escalating series of attention-grabbing...
Capitol Recap: Justices’ gambling decision could be immigration ruling

Capitol Recap: Justices’ gambling decision could be immigration ruling

The U.S. Supreme Court decision to overturn a ban on sports gambling could reach well beyond that gridiron clash between North Central A&M and Springfield State. It could go straight to sanctuary cities, The Associated Press reports, which might be why the Trump administration opposed it. The AP pointed out that seven of the nine justices — five from the conservative side of the bench and...
Georgia GOP candidates battle over who’s strongest gun rights defender

Georgia GOP candidates battle over who’s strongest gun rights defender

The five leading Republican candidates for Georgia governor tried to separate themselves from the field during a debate Thursday, making an appeal to conservative voters on gun rights and illegal immigration. With Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle leading in the polls, the rest of the candidates might be racing for second place in Tuesday’s primary. If no candidate wins a majority, the top two finishers...
Top Georgia Senate Democrat faces first primary challenger in 16 years

Top Georgia Senate Democrat faces first primary challenger in 16 years

The leader of the Georgia Senate’s Democratic caucus is facing his first primary challenger since being elected in 2002, and his opponent says it’s time for a changing of the guard. Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson, D-Stone Mountain, has served for 24 years in the chamber, first spending eight years there before leaving in 1998 to run unsuccessfully for labor commissioner. Henson, 59...
In Georgia, Democratic primary hinges on appeal to black voters

In Georgia, Democratic primary hinges on appeal to black voters

Stacey Abrams hopes the tug of history mixed with a staunchly progressive agenda will secure the black voters she needs to win Tuesday’s primary. Stacey Evans is relying on prominent African-American supporters — and a message based on boosting the HOPE scholarship — to sway the outcome of the race. The Democratic race for governor has pulled Abrams and Evans further to the left...
Two gubernatorial primary debates planned for Sunday

Two gubernatorial primary debates planned for Sunday

Channel 2 WSB-TV, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and News 95.5 and AM 750 WSB will host two gubernatorial primary debates.  The debates will air Sunday, May 20, starting at 1 p.m. on Channel 2.  The candidates are seeking to replace Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, who is ineligible to run after having served two terms in office.  The first debate will feature Democratic candidates ...
Getting on ballot first challenge for metro Atlanta independents

Getting on ballot first challenge for metro Atlanta independents

Luanne Taylor looked at Linda Davis’ notebook full of petition signatures with dismay. Davis, an independent candidate for the Lithonia-based Georgia House District 92, had collected hundreds of signatures to get on the November general election ballot in a plain notebook, not on the petition forms required by the Secretary of State’s Office.  READ | Nonpartisan Georgia voters will...
Georgia 2018: Where the candidates for governor stand on the issues

Georgia 2018: Where the candidates for governor stand on the issues

Georgia voters are set to elect a new governor in 2018.  Stacey Abrams --  the former House minority leader -- won the Democratic nomination. Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Secretary of State Brian Kemp will face off in a July runoff for the GOP nomination.  Learn about how the candidates plan to take on the major issues facing the state.  Cagle: Would cut taxes by $100 million in the...
Georgia’s U.S. House races see surge in contenders this election cycle

Georgia’s U.S. House races see surge in contenders this election cycle

For many years, Atlanta’s well-to-do northern suburbs were considered so politically safe for Republicans that Democrats often couldn’t recruit serious challengers. In the 6th Congressional District — covering parts of Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton counties — U.S. Rep. Tom Price, R-Roswell, regularly cruised to re-election with upwards of two-thirds of the votes in general elections...
At Democratic debate, a revived fight in Georgia over HOPE scholarship

At Democratic debate, a revived fight in Georgia over HOPE scholarship

Just minutes into Tuesday’s Democratic debate, the fault lines over the HOPE scholarship erupted again. Not surprisingly, the rift over the lottery-funded program that has helped define the race for governor also was a dominant theme in the televised showdown. Stacey Evans slammed her rival, Stacey Abrams, over her alliance with Republicans over cuts to the HOPE scholarship. Abrams hit back...
Decatur: Cagle not ‘man enough’ to appear at immigration board hearing

Decatur: Cagle not ‘man enough’ to appear at immigration board hearing

Decatur has ratcheted up its fight with Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, accusing him of not being “man enough” to show up in person Monday for a hearing on an immigration-related complaint he has filed against the city. While highlighting Cagle’s absence at Monday’s hearing, Decatur City Attorney Bryan Downs accused the lieutenant governor of using his taxpayer-funded office to...
Here’s a look at key contests in Georgia primary

Here’s a look at key contests in Georgia primary

Georgia holds a statewide primary election Tuesday with seats for Congress on down to the state Legislature up for grabs. Here are the biggest races to watch come Election Day, as well as how to pick a ballot, confirm your polling location and know when Georgia would hold runoffs in races where no candidate gets a majority: It’s a crowded race to succeed Gov. Nathan Deal, who cannot run for...
Stacey Abrams’ Democratic rival casts doubt on voter registration work

Stacey Abrams’ Democratic rival casts doubt on voter registration work

Democratic candidate for governor Stacey Evans is raising doubts about a major voter registration effort founded by her primary election rival Stacey Abrams, whose rise to national prominence is fueled in part on the promise that she can reach new voters. Evans questioned Abrams’ assertion that she has helped register more than 200,000 Georgia voters since 2013, when she founded the New Georgia...
Big spender plays unusual role in race for Georgia insurance chief

Big spender plays unusual role in race for Georgia insurance chief

Georgians have grown used to seeing ads from “independent” political committees in major races, but now one largely funded by a company with insurance subsidiaries is trying to influence voters to pick its candidate for state insurance commissioner. It is a rare case of such a committee — which can take unlimited contributions from deep-pocket donors — spending big money on...
Early voting slow, but Democrats gaining on Republicans in Georgia

Early voting slow, but Democrats gaining on Republicans in Georgia

Georgia Democrats are pinning their political hopes on a jolt of voter enthusiasm, and early-voting numbers indicate an uptick — if not quite a wave — of left-leaning voters casting ballots ahead of next week’s primary. An Atlanta Journal-Constitution review of the first two weeks of early-voting data shows an increase of more than 50 percent of Democratic ballots cast from the same...
Election Prep: A breakdown of Georgia’s top primary races

Election Prep: A breakdown of Georgia’s top primary races

Georgia’s 2018 primary elections are May 22. Ahead of them, Greg Bluestein and members of The AJC’s politics team broke down some of Georgia’s top races on the Politically Georgia podcast.  You can subscribe and listen on Apple Podcasts, Google Play or Stitcher. You can also download or stream the episodes below. *** James Salzer returned to the podcast to discuss everything...
These candidates have the biggest bankroll in the Georgia schools superintendent’s race

These candidates have the biggest bankroll in the Georgia schools superintendent’s race

Five men are vying for Georgia's top education job, and two of them — both of the Republicans — already have experience as state schools superintendent.  Incumbent Richard Woods is defending the seat against John Barge, who left after one term in an unsuccessful 2014 bid to replace Gov. Nathan Deal. A central plank of Barge's gubernatorial campaign was more money for...
Georgia superintendent candidates say schools need more money

Georgia superintendent candidates say schools need more money

They don’t agree on whether Georgia is doing well with its schools, but all the candidates for the state’s top education job say the same thing about money: There isn’t enough. Even the two Republicans say funding for schools is among their top priorities. Both have unrivaled experience among the five hopefuls, having served in the job already. The experience allows them to argue...
Apathy leads the field in advance voting for Georgia primary

Apathy leads the field in advance voting for Georgia primary

Four election workers. Fifteen voting machines. Zero voters. The scene at 10:30 Saturday morning at the C.T. Martin Natatorium and Recreation Center in southwest Atlanta underscored an apparent lack of excitement surrounding Georgia’s May 22 primary elections. Entering the final week of advance in-person voting, on the last weekend days when polls were open, voters trickled into polling...
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