Political Notes — Georgia’s still listed as a tossup state

[private]Political tradition has it that the presidential race doesn’t really start until after Labor Day, so that means the race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is now officially in progress.

With Labor Day behind us, we’re also starting to see the release of new polling data that shows Clinton still leading Trump, but in a race that is tightening a little.  The polls include:

NBC/SurveyMonkey has Clinton ahead of Trump by 48-42 percent in a two-way race, or by 41-37 percent with the minor party candidates included.

The CNN/ORC poll shows Trump with a 49-48 percent edge over Clinton.  When minor party candidates are included, Trump is up by 45-43 percent.

The poll from Franklin Pierce University/Boston Herald has Clinton leading Trump by 44-41 percent with minor party candidates included.

A WashingtonPost/Survey Monkey poll breaks out its results for each of the 50 states, which shows that the two candidates are still tied 46-46 percent in Georgia (in a four-way race, it’s Trump by 40-39 percent). Georgia is also included in the survey’s list of tossup states.

Dedicating the Sonny Perdue Highway

The portion of I-75 that extends through Houston County was officially dedicated last week as the Governor Sonny Perdue Highway.

“Governor Perdue is a strong leader and his personal commitment to the wellbeing of Georgia and its citizens is remarkable,” said state Sen. Larry Walker III. “This highway dedication recognizes the positive impact he left on this great state and our local communities.”

Kemp named to homeland security group

The National Association of Secretaries of State has appointed Brian Kemp as one of four secretaries of state who will serve on the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Election Infrastructure Cyber Security Working Group.

Other members include Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merrill, Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson, and California Secretary of State Alex Padilla in an information-sharing project between state election officials and federal agencies on election cyber security.

“This bi-partisan collaboration welcomes expert advice and respects our constitutional roles, which is the right approach to this important issue of protecting the vote,” Kemp said.

New judgeship recommended

The Judicial Council of Georgia has recommended the creation of a new superior court judgeship in the Northeastern Judicial Circuit, which covers Hall and Dawson counties.  The recommendation will be forwarded to the governor and the General Assembly for considation in the 2017 session.

The council also appointed two new members to the Board of Court Reporting: Judge Brenda H. Trammell of the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit and Savannah attorney John Bell Manly of Manly Jones. They will serve two-year terms. Appointed to a second term was Julie Brackett, court reporter for the Augusta Judicial Circuit.

The Georgia Supreme Court appointed five new members to the Georgia Commission on Interpreters: Superior Court Judge Meng Lim of the Tallapoosa Judicial Circuit, Magistrate Court Judge Ruth R. McMullin of Gwinnett County; Stephen Nevels, court administrator for the Piedmont Judicial Circuit; Christopher Paul public defender for the Cherokee Judicial Circuit, and state Rep. Bert Reeves (R-Marietta). The Commission on Interpreters is chaired by Justice Keith R. Blackwell.

Executive appointments

Gov. Nathan Deal’s office announced the following appointments to state boards and commissions —

Board of Corrections: Chris Clark of Cumming, the sales manager for Stephens Industries, and Mike Coggins of Lake Park, the director of agriculture for Generation Farms.

Board of Dentistry: Dale Mayfield of Fayetteville, an executive dental officer for Kool Smiles.

Board of Juvenile Justice:  District Attorney Penny Penn of the Bell-Forsyth Judicial Circuit.

Board of Trustees of the Public School Employees’ Retirement System: Richard Taylor of Kennesaw, a practice leader with HLB Gross Collins.

Georgia Board of Private Detective and Security Agencies: John “Bart” Mitcham of Cartersville, a licensed private detective; J. Tripp Mitchell of Villa Rica, Mitchell is a private detective; John Villines of Cleveland, the founder of John C. Villines LLC; and Timothy Williams of Fayetteville, the director of public safety for Emory Healthcare.

Georgia Child Fatality Review Panel: Kathleen Bennett of Augusta, a retired mental health specialist; Superior Court Judge C. LaTain Kell of Cobb County; Paula Sparks of Kennesaw, an investigator with the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council; and District Attorney Ashley Wright of Augusta.

Georgia Development Authority: Glen Whitley of Bethlehem, the owner of Whitley Stump Grinding.

Georgia Drivers’ Education Commission: Alfred Barber of Fortson, the president of Barber’s Driving School; Elizabeth Graham of Marietta, a teacher at Marietta/Cobb Driver’s Education; Liddell Greenway of Douglas, the vice president for economic development at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College; and William Rish of Broxton, the headmaster of Citizens Christian Academy.

Georgia Public Telecommunications Commission: Sloane Evans of Smyrna, the vice president of human resources for Georgia Power.

Stakeholder Advisory Board: Landen Boyd of Lawrenceville, a senior superintendent at Carroll Daniel Construction Co.

State Board of Accountancy: Ashley Addison of Richmond Hill, a CPA, and James Martin of Lavonia, who retired as executive director of the Georgia Society of Certified Public

State Board of Optometry: Gerald Prchal of Albany, an optometrist with Albany Eye Care, and Jody Whisenant of Gainesville, the co-owner of EyeCare Associates.

State Board of Registration of Used Car Dealers and Motor Vehicle Parts Dealers: Scott Woodward of Senoia, an insurance agent for State Farm.

© 2016 by The Georgia Report

Tags: Brian Kemp , Judicial Council of Georgia , presidential polls , Sonny Perdue