Valdosta Daily Times

State News

July 23, 2013

Michelle Nunn enters Ga.’s Senate race

CLARKSTON — Georgia emerged as a battleground state Monday in the fight for control of the U.S. Senate as Democrat Michelle Nunn announced plans to run for her father’s old seat, joining a crowded field of Republican contenders and setting off what will likely be a fiercely contested and costly race.

Nunn, the daughter of former Democratic Sen. Sam Nunn of Georgia and CEO of one of the nation’s largest volunteer organizations, moved quickly to define herself as someone with the experience to set aside partisan rancor and build coalitions to solve the nation’s problems.

“Wherever I go in Georgia people speak of their frustrations with what’s not happening in Washington, that there is a focus on fighting instead of getting things done,” Nunn said in an interview with The Associated Press. “I believe in the power of individuals to create change when they join together.”  

Nunn, 47, the daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, becomes the first well-known Democrat to enter the race for the seat of retiring U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, a Republican. Democrats see Nunn’s candidacy as a chance to make inroads in a southern state that they once dominated, but where Republicans now control all statewide offices. Meanwhile, Republicans are making a push to win control of the U.S. Senate seat and cannot afford to lose the seat now held by Chambliss.

Nunn clearly hopes that talking about issues like reducing the federal deficit will position her well in a general election matchup. Nunn said she wants to work across party lines and pointed to her work as CEO of Points of Light, which was founded by former President George H.W. Bush.

Nunn also didn’t hesitate to criticize President Barack Obama, saying she wishes more was being done to address the federal deficit.

“We need to take a much harder look at that and really make some hard choices, and I think neither side is willing to do that,” Nunn said. “I’ve spent a lot of time looking at how people are willing to sacrifice for others and to be called upon for something greater than themselves, and I think that is a big part of the equation for solving the deficit.”

Nunn, who is married with two children, also said some changes will need to be made to Obama’s signature health care law. She said she sympathizes with small business owners who “are often burdened with too much regulation and too much taxes.” She also said that some aspects of the law are beneficial, pointing to one element that allows parents to keep their young adult children on their health insurance plan until the age of 26.

“I think we need to look at it from a pragmatic perspective and fix the things that are not working and move it forward without all the politicizing,” said Nunn, whose father, a moderate Democrat, served in the Senate from 1973 to 1997.

On the issue of abortion, Nunn said that she believes abortions should be “safe, legal and rare and that women should be ultimately able to make this very difficult personal decision in concert with their doctor and their family.”

Brad Dayspring, a spokesman for the Senate Republicans’ campaign committee, sought to link Nunn to national Democrats on the issues — a preview of what’s to come in the weeks and months ahead.

“It takes more than just family ties to get elected to the Senate, and we look forward to a robust debate about the Obama/Nunn agenda and the ramifications that it has on middle-class families and women in Georgia,” Dayspring said.

Nunn plans to file her official paperwork Tuesday to become a candidate and will hit the road next month to travel the state and meet with voters, said deputy campaign manager Zac Petkanas. The other declared Democrat in the race is Branko Radulovacki, an Atlanta physician.

On the Republican side, U.S. Reps. Paul Broun of Athens, Phil Gingrey of Marietta and Jack Kingston of Savannah — along with former Secretary of State Karen Handel — have entered the race.

1
Text Only
State News
  • Ga. online tuition dropping

    Jenni Small has good reason for avoiding 8 a.m. world literature classes at Dalton State College in northern Georgia. The 23-year-old works night shifts as an operator for carpet manufacturer Shaw while finishing her bachelor’s degree in mathematics.
    Instead of heading straight to class from work, she uses eCore — an online system that focuses on “core” classes that every Georgia state college or university student must take — for 1 or 2 courses each semester.

    April 21, 2014

  • Vidalia Onion Battle_Rich copy.jpg Vidalia onion farmer back in court over ship date

    One of Georgia’s most prominent Vidalia onion farmers is going back to court in an effort to stop the state agriculture commissioner from fining growers who ship the famous sweet onions before a certain date.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • GEORGIA PORTS_Rich copy.jpg Ga. ports on track to smash cargo records

    Georgia’s seaports are on track to finish the 2014 fiscal year with record cargo volumes as third-quarter numbers show big growth capped by the ports’ busiest month ever in terms of total tonnage being shipped to and from the docks.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gov. Deal signs prisoner re-entry bill into law

    Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal signed a bill into law on Sunday that is aimed at reducing recidivism among ex-offenders and helping them successfully re-enter society.

    April 14, 2014

  • Deal reports $3.9M in cash for re-election bid

    Gov. Nathan Deal on Monday reported $3.9 million in cash for his re-election bid, after raising about $84,000 in 11 days since the legislative session ended.

    April 8, 2014

  • photoscape_eagle.jpg Ga. eagle population continues growth

    During a late-March aerial survey by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, more than 25 bald eagle nests were counted in northeastern Georgia. All but three represented viable adults and chicks.

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Private company selling Georgia accident reports

    Selling car crash reports to a private company has saved time and money according to state officials, but some drivers cite concerns over retrieval costs and privacy.

    April 7, 2014

  • Forecasters issue flood watch in Ga.

    The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch covering much of the state.

    April 6, 2014

  • Georgia wants private companies to manage student housing

    Georgia is on course to become one of the nation’s largest experiments in privatized college dorms, but it’s unclear whether the changes will lower students’ bills at a time when university costs are soaring.

    April 6, 2014

  • Ga. misses food stamp backlog deadline

    State officials say Georgia missed the deadline to clear backlogged food stamp cases, putting millions of dollars of federal funding at risk.

    April 5, 2014

Top News
Poll

Given the amount of rain recently, what's your favorite “rain” song?

Singing in the Rain
Purple Rain
Have You Ever Seen the Rain?
November Rain
Rainy Night in Georgia
Other
     View Results