Thursday, October 2, 2008

Let The Games Begin

After what appears to have been a slow start to the local campaign season, things are finally heating up. So, prepare to be bombarded with candidate fora, interviews, endorsements, and questionnaires.

As is their custom, the Federation of Neighborhoods and the LEAD Athens Alumni Association will sponsor dual candidate fora to be held in Masters Hall at the UGA Center for Continuing Education. Both begin at 7:00 p.m., preceded by one-hour “meet and greet” sessions, and will be broadcast live on WUGA (91.7 FM).

The first forum, slated for Thursday, 09 October, will feature candidates for the Georgia Senate and the Athens-Clarke County Commission.

Georgia Senate District 46:

Bill Cowsert (Republican – incumbent)

Sherry Jackson (Democrat)

Georgia Senate District 47:

Ralph Hudgens (Republican – incumbent)

Tim Riley (Democrat)

In either race, the Democrat may well win Clarke County and get trounced everywhere else.

Athens-Clarke County Commission District 6:

Valdis “Red” Petrovs

Ed Robinson

This is a nonpartisan contest, at least in theory that is, and to me is the most interesting local race. Petrovs has been a mover and shaker in the PPA/OneAthens initiative, so he brings a lot of experience and knowledge concerning local issues to the table. In a move that may be used against him, Petrovs took a political risk and addressed the Clarke County Republican Committee back in July. Robinson is running as the heir apparent to the retiring Carl Jordan. I do not have anything against Robinson, who is already racking up the lefty endorsements, but I think that the absolute last thing Athens-Clarke County needs is yet another self-styled “progressive” on the Commission, as that body is too much of an echo chamber as it is.

The second forum, scheduled for Thursday, 16 October, will feature candidates for the Clarke Count Board of Education and Clarke County Sheriff.

Clarke County Board of Education District 2:

J.T. Jones

Vernon Payne (incumbent)

Clarke County Board of Education District 6:

Jim Geiser

Charles Worthy (incumbent)

Clarke County Board of Education District 8:

Chinami Goodie

David Huff

Suffice it to say that there needs to be a wholesale housecleaning over on Mitchell Bridge Road, so I’m pulling for all of the challengers against all of the incumbents. The open seat in District 8 is being contested by two newcomers. Though, again, these are nominally nonpartisan contests, the voting histories of the candidates have come under scrutiny. I remain unconvinced that voters can draw much in the way of useful insight from voting histories insofar as local offices are concerned – but this is Clarke County so it will be an issue (of course, it is not like the “blue” guys who have controlled the Board for all these years haven’t made a complete mess of public education in this community). For what it is worth, Geiser is scheduled to address the Clarke County Republican Committee on 13 October.

Clarke County Sheriff:

Kenneth Brown (Independent)

Ira Edwards (Democrat – incumbent)

Brown qualified to run as an independent rather than challenge Edwards in the Democrat primary or run as a Republican. Again, I do not have anything against Edwards, but I think that a change is needed.

Uncontested races:

Georgia House of Representatives District 113:

Bob Smith (Republican – incumbent)

Georgia House of Representatives District 114:

Keith Heard (Democrat – incumbent)

Georgia House of Representatives District 115:

Doug McKillip (Democrat – incumbent)

Smith represents only a few precincts in Clarke County, the bulk of his district lying in Oconee County. As stated before, I like Bob because he is not the least bit reluctant to stick his thumb in the eye of the Athens-Clarke County political establishment (and not just for the sake of being obstinate, but on philosophical grounds with which I usually agree). Heard will show up to collect his winnings and return to Atlanta for the next 23 months (for those unfamiliar with politics in the Classic City, Heard’s seeming absence from the community between elections is something of a running joke).

Athens-Clarke County Commission District 2:

Harry Sims (incumbent)

Athens-Clarke County Commission District 4:

Alice Kinman (incumbent)

Athens-Clarke County Commission District 8:

Andy Herod (incumbent)

Athens-Clarke County Commission District 10:

Mike Hamby

In District 10, incumbent Elton Dodson has withdrawn from the race, thereby leaving challenger Hamby as the only candidate. From what I can gather, there will not be much of a difference in the approach to policy from one to the other.

Clarke County Board of Education District 4:

Allison Wright (incumbent)

Sphere: Related Content

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Who knows where to download XRumer 5.0 Palladium?
Help, please. All recommend this program to effectively advertise on the Internet, this is the best program!