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  • Barr wants alleged vandalism
    at White House investigated
    Rep. Bob Barr, a Georgia Republican, has asked the General Accounting Office to investigate vandalism at the White House by employees of the previous administration, the Washington Times reported Thursday. The call for the federal government oversight agency to look into the cost of the vandalism comes despite efforts by the administration of President George W. Bush to downplay a spate of pranks by members of the staff of former President Clinton.
    Link to the story 1/30/00

    New state flag flying at capitol
    A new state flag was hoisted at Georgia's state capitol on Wednesday, replacing a banner that bore the Confederate battle emblem deplored by many blacks as a symbol of racism because of its evocation of slavery. The new flag, ushered into existence in the span of just a few days, was hailed as a victory for civil rights groups that had threatened economic boycotts of the state if the flag remained unchanged. Link to the story

    Senate expected to
    OK flag changes
    The Georgia Senate on Tuesday is expected to decide the fate of one of the most emotional issues to come before the General Assembly - whether to change the state flag by shrinking its Confederate battle flag so small that it probably would be unrecognizable when flown atop tall buildings. One member of the GOP leadership, Sen. Casey Cagle of Gainesville, the minority caucus chairman, predicted the bill to alter the flag will pass.
    Link to the story 1/28/00

    Little-known lawmaker has
    big impact on new flag
    A 38-year-old lawmaker barely known outside his north Georgia district is responsible for the words that will appear at the bottom of every Georgia flag, if the new banner is approved. Republican Rep. James Mills, an ordained Baptist minister from Hall County, asked House members Wednesday to change the proposed flag by adding the same words that appear on the nation's currency - "In God We Trust."
    Link to the story

    Atlanta Chamber rallies
    support for new flag
    With only a 12-vote difference in the Georgia House's historic Jan. 24 vote to drop the Confederate battle emblem from the state flag, the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce now is rallying its 8,000 members to pressure state senators to approve a new flag next week. In a mass email Thursday, Chamber President Sam Williams asked members to contact their local senators as well as email their support of Gov. Roy Barnes and Lt. Gov. Mark Taylor's stand against the current flag.
    Link to the story

    Flag design is a dud
    Politically, Georgia's proposed new flag is being praised as a great compromise. Aesthetically, though, experts say it is a visual train wreck - a jumble of stars, banners, circles, words, numbers and other flags. ``My first impression is, this is just about the worst state flag,'' said Whitney Smith, director of the Flag Research Center in Winchester, Mass. ``This is an example for the How Not to Design a Flag class. This is what you put on the board to get everyone to understand.''
    Link to the story

    Miller to help unveil
    tax proposal Monday
    Republican Sen. Phil Gramm, an influential member of the Senate Finance Committee, will introduce a tax-cut plan on Monday, an aide to the senator told Reuters on Sunday. Gramm spokesman Larry Neal declined to give details, but CBS's "Face the Nation" program reported that Gramm would offer a measure based on the 10-year, trillion-dollar tax-cut proposal that Republican President George W. Bush pushed during the presidential campaign. Link to the story1/21/00

    Bush's approval rating starts at 42%; Clinton ends with 58%
    President George W. Bush starts his first day in office on Saturday with a positive job approval rating of 42 percent, according to a Reuters/Zogby poll released on Inauguration Day. Outgoing President Clinton's positive job performance rating was 58 percent and 41 percent negative in his final days in office, according to a recent Zogby poll. Link to the story

    'Hail to the Thief'
    Thousands of noisy demonstrators lined rain-soaked streets on Saturday to boo George W. Bush's inauguration, chanting ``Hail to the Thief'' as they championed causes from abortion to electoral rights. Amid the tightest-ever security measures for a presidential swearing-in, police said they had arrested nine protesters and charged them with disorderly conduct. Some protesters said they were clubbed although this was denied by police. Link to the story


    Barr lauds Clinton settlement
    Rep. Bob Barr , a Georgia Republican who was a House impeachment prosecutor and has been one of President Clinton's harshest critics, said the deal would allow lawmakers to start repairing the damage done by Clinton to the legal system. ``Returning respect to the presidency and the Department of Justice is more important than worrying about what happens to a retiring president,'' Barr said.
    Link to the story

    Clay loses another
    to state Democrats
    Marietta Chuck Clay won't get any kudos for his stewardship of the state Republican party, especially now that the party has lost another to the Democratic Party. Citing Republican moves she said are too far to the right and too confrontational, veteran state lawmaker Kathy Ashe of Atlanta on Friday left the GOP.
    Background at Access Atlanta

    Barnes, Waters chair campaign to get Maynard Jackson elected
    Maynard Jackson, the first black mayor of Atlanta and a board member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, wants to be chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Georgia Gov. Roy Barnes is his campaign chairman and Rep. Maxine Waters of California is a co-chairwoman. The election is scheduled for Feb. 3.
    Link to the story

    State Assembly hoping
    for nicer session
    The tone of the upcoming General Assembly can't get much nastier than last year when a senator called the governor an "S.O.B." - short for "Supreme Omnipotent Being" - and the House Speaker got so annoyed he told another lawmaker to "Shut up out there!" In preparing for this year's session, which begins Monday, state legislators say they want to avoid that sort of bitter partisan backbiting. But no one can offer any guarantees of good behavior.
    Link to the story

    Clay's term as GOP chair
    a legacy of political failures, embarrassment
    Marietta's Chuck Clay is ending his term as chairman of the Republican Party in Georgia, marked by one failure after another. As party head, Clay was unable to stop Governor Barnes' education program, one that the GOP was against. Democrats made more gains in the state as the South as a whole continued to go Republican. While chairman, the party lost a US Senate seat and oversaw an inept campaign to reclaim it.

    Right in his own backyard Clay saw Republican legislator George Grindley lose to a Democrat and nearly lost another when Judy Manning won by only 19 votes. Perhaps the worse part was the black mark given to the Clay family name when it was revealed last year that an uncle was allegedly involved in the barbaric lynching of Leo Frank. But it wasn't all a bust. Clay and the GOP were able to wrestle a state House seat away from Randy Sauder and give it to Ginger Collins. (Jan5)

    Redistricting task
    awaits Georgia lawmakers
    Winning two extra seats in Congress, as Georgia did last week, was the easy part. Now legislators face the challenge of redrawing congressional and legislative district maps. It's never simple. Last time, the job took six years. The process is called redistricting. After every census, states must redraw election boundaries to reflect population changes. Link to the story

    Country reverting to regional political split as South goes Republican
    When you look beyond the litigation and the recounting, the greatest significance of the election of 2000 may be in its confirmation that the United States is reverting to the tradition of regional politics that ruled from the Civil War to the coming of the New Deal. This time, however, the parties are reversing their roles: The Democrats, once the party of the South, have become predominant among northerners, while the Republicans have turned into the party of Dixie. Moreover, there is a distinct possibility, judging by the results of the past three presidential elections, that the Republican Party is becoming what the Democrats were from 1860 to 1928: the minority party
    Link to the story

    Manning wins with
    new margin of 19 votes
    There were no hanging chads, swinging chads or pregnant chads. No butterflies. No former secretaries of state. But a bit of the contentiousness of the presidential vote count in Florida popped up in Cobb County Wednesday during a recount for the state House District 32 seat. Judy Manning beat Pat Dooley by just 19 votes. 11/16/00
    Background story at Access Atlanta

    Ousted Grindley challenges
    voting results in House 35
    State Rep. George Grindley (R-Marietta) filed legal proceedings Wednesday to challenge the results of the general election, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He also requested a new election. Grindley, who lost to Democrat Terry Johnson by 217 votes, charged that people who had moved out of House District 35 were allowed to vote. "And since the election was determined by 217 votes, these illegal voters could have determined the outcome of the election," Grindley said. 11/16/00

    Candidates lining up for
    Sabiston's city council seat
    With rumors that Paul Sabiston won't seek re-election to Marietta city council, a host of people are lining-up for his seat. One name prominently mentioned candidate could be Pat Dooley who just barely lost her challenge to Judy Manning. Firmly interested are political gadfly Cherry Spencer Stark, best known for forming a state-wide gay rights organization, and Cobb District Attorney Van Pearlberg.

    ousts Georgia House leader
    After two years of Republican losses in the Georgia House, minority leader Bob Irvin has taken the fall. Lawmakers voted to replace Irvin with Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Sharpsburg. Westmoreland will now lead Republicans in the Democratic-controlled legislature when they meet again in January. Link to the story

    Is Marietta going Democratic?
    Besides the presidential race, the biggest shocker in our area has to be the defeat of Republican George Grindley by Democrat Terry Johnson for the Georgia District 35 House seat. In District 32, Democrat Pat Dooley nearly defeated incumbent Judy Manning, whose district is in the heart of Marietta. Dooley lost by 12 votes and a recount is expected. For Grindley, there has been speculation that his lost had to do with his close association with Newt Gingrich. Manning's district has seen an increase in Latinos and northern Catholics, who traditionally vote Democrat, and there may have been some resentment over her family's sale of land to build the new high school.

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