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Latest from Greg Bluestein

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A wild-card contender wages unconventional fight for Georgia governor
 Clay Tippins has pounded push-ups with high school students, talked combat maneuvers with military buddies, shed tears with medical marijuana advocates and launched a scathing Super Bowl attempt to take down his top rival. The one-time swimming star and Navy SEAL is quickly making waves in the Republican race for governor, and he talks about...

Posted: 6 hours ago

Clay Tippins has pounded push-ups with high school students, talked combat maneuvers with military buddies, shed tears with medical marijuana advocates and launched a scathing Super Bowl attempt to take down his top rival. The one-time swimming star and Navy SEAL is quickly making waves in the Republican race for governor, and he talks about...
Delta’s NRA move could put airline tax break in Georgia at risk 
 Delta’s decision to sever marketing ties with the National Rifle Association on Saturday sparked outrage from Georgia conservatives who urged state lawmakers to defy the Atlanta-based airline’s push for a multimillion dollar fuel tax break.  Several conservative groups  seized on the airline’s decision to end a...

Posted: 13 hours ago

Delta’s decision to sever marketing ties with the National Rifle Association on Saturday sparked outrage from Georgia conservatives who urged state lawmakers to defy the Atlanta-based airline’s push for a multimillion dollar fuel tax break.  Several conservative groups seized on the airline’s decision to end a...
Ossoff won’t make another run at Georgia congressional seat this year
 Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday that he won’t make another bid this year for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in suburbs north of Atlanta. “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians...

Posted: a day ago

Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday that he won’t make another bid this year for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in suburbs north of Atlanta. “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians...
Why Jon Ossoff isn’t making a comeback in Georgia’s 6th
 Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday he won’t make another bid for Georgia’s 6th District this year, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in the north Atlanta district. “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians who volunteered...

Posted: a day ago

Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday he won’t make another bid for Georgia’s 6th District this year, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in the north Atlanta district. “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians who volunteered...
Ossoff decides against another bid for Georgia’s 6th District
 Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday he won’t make another bid for Georgia’s 6th District this year, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in the north Atlanta district.  “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians who volunteered...

Posted: a day ago

Democrat Jon Ossoff said Friday he won’t make another bid for Georgia’s 6th District this year, leaving it up to lesser-known contenders to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in the north Atlanta district.  “I’m grateful beyond words for the support and hard work of the thousands of Georgians who volunteered...
It’s official: We’re no longer ‘a nation of immigrants’
 Given the current state of affairs in Washington, you had to see this one coming. From the New York Times: On the bright side, Emma Lazarus’ poem about “huddled masses yearning to breathe free” remains at the base of the Statue of Liberty. For now. The current immigration debate is being driven, in large part,...

Posted: a day ago

Given the current state of affairs in Washington, you had to see this one coming. From the New York Times: On the bright side, Emma Lazarus’ poem about “huddled masses yearning to breathe free” remains at the base of the Statue of Liberty. For now. The current immigration debate is being driven, in large part,...
At Georgia gov forum, friction over competing Democratic strategies  
 The Democratic race for governor has long shaped up as a clash in competing strategies. A question near the end of a forum featuring the two candidates Thursday put that division on vivid display.  Asked why this election can reverse a string of Democratic defeats in Georgia, the two quickly showed why this race is being watched nationally...

Posted: 2 days ago

The Democratic race for governor has long shaped up as a clash in competing strategies. A question near the end of a forum featuring the two candidates Thursday put that division on vivid display.  Asked why this election can reverse a string of Democratic defeats in Georgia, the two quickly showed why this race is being watched nationally...
Georgia House backs $8M in school security improvements after Florida shooting 
 The Georgia House will set aside $8 million in bond funding to pay for school security improvements in response to growing concerns about keeping public schools safe from mass shootings. House Speaker David Ralston’s office said Thursday the money would pay for capital improvements and not personnel hires. Though the specifics haven&rsquo...

Posted: 2 days ago

The Georgia House will set aside $8 million in bond funding to pay for school security improvements in response to growing concerns about keeping public schools safe from mass shootings. House Speaker David Ralston’s office said Thursday the money would pay for capital improvements and not personnel hires. Though the specifics haven&rsquo...
Sheriff who likened governor to ‘Lucifer’ won’t apologize
 The law enforcement official who compared Gov. Nathan Deal to “Lucifer” resigned from the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association after the group disavowed his criticism of the Republican’s proposal to overhaul the state’s cash bail system. Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said Thursday he told the group he was willing...

Posted: 2 days ago

The law enforcement official who compared Gov. Nathan Deal to “Lucifer” resigned from the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association after the group disavowed his criticism of the Republican’s proposal to overhaul the state’s cash bail system. Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said Thursday he told the group he was willing...
The Jolt: A sudden, GOP-backed move to end DeKalb’s CEO form of government
 A surprise move to eliminate DeKalb County’s CEO form of government passed the House Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday. House Bill 961 wasn’t on the agenda, and had only been introduced a day earlier by state Reps. Meagan Hanson, R-Brookhaven, and Tom Taylor, R-Dunwoody. Members of the committee were presented...

Posted: 2 days ago

A surprise move to eliminate DeKalb County’s CEO form of government passed the House Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday. House Bill 961 wasn’t on the agenda, and had only been introduced a day earlier by state Reps. Meagan Hanson, R-Brookhaven, and Tom Taylor, R-Dunwoody. Members of the committee were presented...
A Georgia GOP response to school shootings: More security officers 
 More than 1,000 demonstrators gathered at the Georgia Capitol to demand stricter gun laws after the latest school shooting in Florida. A handful of Republican legislators had a different sort of response.  State Sens. Josh McKoon and Michael Williams, both candidates for higher office, each proposed significantly boosting the number...

Posted: 3 days ago

More than 1,000 demonstrators gathered at the Georgia Capitol to demand stricter gun laws after the latest school shooting in Florida. A handful of Republican legislators had a different sort of response.  State Sens. Josh McKoon and Michael Williams, both candidates for higher office, each proposed significantly boosting the number...
Secrecy surrounding Amazon HQ2 bid keeps Georgians in the dark
 The hunt for Amazon’s second headquarters remains the buzz among lawmakers at Georgia’s State Capitol and business elite. But it’s the absence of information about Georgia’s bid to win HQ2 and its promise of 50,000 jobs that’s been most confounding to good government groups and tax watchdogs who fear winning...

Posted: 3 days ago

The hunt for Amazon’s second headquarters remains the buzz among lawmakers at Georgia’s State Capitol and business elite. But it’s the absence of information about Georgia’s bid to win HQ2 and its promise of 50,000 jobs that’s been most confounding to good government groups and tax watchdogs who fear winning...
A bill to protect pet stores riles up Baptists, foes of Big Tobacco
 The state Capitol can produce the strangest bedfellows. Over the last few years, as a means of boosting adoption rates for abandoned dogs and cats and discouraging “puppy mills,” several local governments in Georgia have banned the retail sale of pets in their jurisdictions. The trend is an alarming one for chains such as Petland...

Posted: 3 days ago

The state Capitol can produce the strangest bedfellows. Over the last few years, as a means of boosting adoption rates for abandoned dogs and cats and discouraging “puppy mills,” several local governments in Georgia have banned the retail sale of pets in their jurisdictions. The trend is an alarming one for chains such as Petland...
Isakson treads carefully on guns following Florida shootings
 Georgia U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson is taking a cautious approach to the latest gun rights debate after a teen killed 17 former classmates in Parkland, Fla., last week.  The Republican on Tuesday outlined three steps he wants Congress to take in the aftermath of the country’s latest mass shooting, but he steered clear of discussing...

Posted: 4 days ago

Georgia U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson is taking a cautious approach to the latest gun rights debate after a teen killed 17 former classmates in Parkland, Fla., last week.  The Republican on Tuesday outlined three steps he wants Congress to take in the aftermath of the country’s latest mass shooting, but he steered clear of discussing...
Georgia 2018: Republican gov candidates split on medical marijuana  
 Republican Clay Tippins sat at the end of  a semi-circle, surrounded by about a half-dozen parents of children who rely on cannabis oil to treat debilitating illnesses. The first-time candidate differs with his rivals in the governor’s race on contentious issues like “religious liberty” legislation and the escalating costs...

Posted: 4 days ago

Republican Clay Tippins sat at the end of a semi-circle, surrounded by about a half-dozen parents of children who rely on cannabis oil to treat debilitating illnesses. The first-time candidate differs with his rivals in the governor’s race on contentious issues like “religious liberty” legislation and the escalating costs...
Olens charts next course after leaving KSU
 Former Attorney General Sam Olens has joined the Atlanta office of the Dentons law firm, where he plans to leverage his work in local and state government – as well as his brief foray into higher education – to help craft policy in Georgia and elsewhere. In his most extensive comments since he stepped down from Kennesaw State...

Posted: 4 days ago

Former Attorney General Sam Olens has joined the Atlanta office of the Dentons law firm, where he plans to leverage his work in local and state government – as well as his brief foray into higher education – to help craft policy in Georgia and elsewhere. In his most extensive comments since he stepped down from Kennesaw State...
The Jolt: Same-sex marriage becomes unabashed focus of ‘religious liberty’ bill
 The Senate Judiciary Committee gave 5-2 approval this morning to Senate Bill 375, a measure offering legal protection to faith-based child placement agencies that refuse to engage with LGBT couples. A similar provision was stripped from a massive overhaul of the state’s adoption law last month, when it was condemned by Gov...

Posted: 4 days ago

The Senate Judiciary Committee gave 5-2 approval this morning to Senate Bill 375, a measure offering legal protection to faith-based child placement agencies that refuse to engage with LGBT couples. A similar provision was stripped from a massive overhaul of the state’s adoption law last month, when it was condemned by Gov...
Pro-Cagle booster launches $1.2M ad buy in Georgia gov race  
 An issues advocacy group rolled out a pair of statewide ads Tuesday praising Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle’s education policies and illegal immigration crackdown, providing air support for the Republican ahead of his own multimillion  blitz. Citizens for Georgia’s Future said the $1.2 million ad buy will launch the two ads in the Atlanta...

Posted: 5 days ago

An issues advocacy group rolled out a pair of statewide ads Tuesday praising Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle’s education policies and illegal immigration crackdown, providing air support for the Republican ahead of his own multimillion blitz. Citizens for Georgia’s Future said the $1.2 million ad buy will launch the two ads in the Atlanta...
Kemp faces new voter security questions amid Russia probe
 As evidence mounts that Russia is again trying to interfere in U.S. votes, Georgia’s top elections official faces new scrutiny of his oversight of the state’s voting system. Secretary of State Brian Kemp, a Republican candidate for governor, tells voters the state’s elections system is secure and that he doesn’t need...

Posted: 5 days ago

As evidence mounts that Russia is again trying to interfere in U.S. votes, Georgia’s top elections official faces new scrutiny of his oversight of the state’s voting system. Secretary of State Brian Kemp, a Republican candidate for governor, tells voters the state’s elections system is secure and that he doesn’t need...
In converted jail cell, Kemp talks tough on illegal immigrants 
 Secretary of State Brian Kemp launched his statewide bus tour Monday with a trip to a former city jail converted into a coffee shop, where he outlined a crackdown on illegal immigration. The Republican told a few dozen supporters it was “insane” that immigrants in the country illegally get healthcare coverage when &ldquo...

Posted: 5 days ago

Secretary of State Brian Kemp launched his statewide bus tour Monday with a trip to a former city jail converted into a coffee shop, where he outlined a crackdown on illegal immigration. The Republican told a few dozen supporters it was “insane” that immigrants in the country illegally get healthcare coverage when &ldquo...
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