In the Loop

  • Houle, Hull Enter ACC Commission Races


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    Jesse Houle.

    ACC Commissioner Jerry NeSmith will have a challenge from the left this year, as progressive activist Jesse Houle announced they're running against the District 6 incumbent.

    Houle was part of Occupy Athens and one of the cofounders of Athens for Everyone, the group that grew out of Commissioner Tim Denson’s failed 2014 mayoral campaign and later helped elect a slate of progressive candidates to the Mayor and Commission. Houle is also a musician, operations manager at Nuci’s Space and a fixture at the podium during the commission’s public comment periods.


  • Cedar Shoals and Clarke Central Named AP Honor Schools

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    In spite of the board of education being an ongoing reality TV show, there is some good news coming out of the Clarke County School District. Both Clarke Central and Cedar Shoals are among the 255 Georgia high schools to be named Advanced Placement Honor Schools for 2020.

    In addition, Clarke Central was one of 70 high schools named an AP School of Distinction, meaning at least 20% of students took an AP exam, and 50% of those scored a three or higher. Three is generally the minimum score to receive college credit.

    Cedar Shoals was named an Access and Support School, where at least 30% of AP students identified as black or Hispanic, and 30% scored a three or higher.


  • The Religious Left Reminds You to Vote


    Laura Mick wants to know what your voting plan is.

    It is 11 a.m. on the bitterly cold Sunday morning prior to the New Hampshire primary, and the 42-year-old Granite State native is carefully navigating the inch of ice on the sidewalks of Manchester’s low-income, heavily immigrant 5th Ward in order to remind its residents to vote. And to remind them that, even if they are convicted felon or haven’t yet registered, they can still vote in the primary. Also, they can get a ride if they need it.

    A canvasser with the New Hampshire Interfaith Action Fund, an affiliate of the Granite State Organizing Project (GSOP), which unities “religious, labor and community organizations rooted in faith and democratic values” and advocates for “policies that will build community across difference and promote a just society for all the people of New Hampshire,” Mick can relate to how tough it is to make it to the polls. 


  • The Strokes Stump for Bernie While Biden Bashes Trump



    Aughts alt-rockers The Strokes opened for Sen. Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire Monday night.

    As a primary that kicked off in disarray wraps up in New Hampshire, presidential candidates raced across the Granite State for the last time Monday night.

    On the final evening before people hit the polls, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders held the largest rally of the week.

    “In case you haven’t noticed, there are a lot of people here tonight,” Sanders said. “In fact, there are three times more people here tonight than at any other Democratic rally in New Hampshire.”

    The crowd of more than 7,500 erupted through the candidate’s stump speech decrying the power of elites, the absurdity of the American health system, the influence of corporations and big money in politics, the failed war on drugs, and rapidly accelerating income inequality.


  • Socialism Is on Trial in the New Hampshire Primary

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    Photo Credit: Derek Kouyoumjian

    Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks at a debate Friday in Manchester.

    Friday night’s debate in Manchester kicked off with a discussion on the political viability of “democratic socialism” in American elections.

    Moderator George Stefanopolis asked candidates whether the acceptance of the label by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders would damage the chances of Democrats winning back the White House and Senate in November.

    While none of his opponents explicitly said the label would be a detriment in the general election, members of the field’s more conservative wing emphasized the risk in nominating a candidate as left wing as Sanders.


  • Brian Patterson Says He's Ready to Take Over as DA

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    Chief assistant district attorney Brian Patterson said he's ready to take over for his boss, Ken Mauldin, and run no matter when Gov. Brian Kemp calls an election.

    Mauldin recently announced his resignation, which will make Patterson the interim DA effective Mar. 1 unless Kemp appoints someone else in the meantime.


  • Gonzalez: Kemp Should Call Special Election for District Attorney

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    Deborah Gonzalez.

    Western Circuit District Attorney Ken Mauldin announced earlier this week that he's resigning. No big deal, right? He wasn't going to run for re-election anyway. So Gov. Brian Kemp appoints someone who gets beaten by the favorite in the Democratic primary, Deborah Gonzalez, in November.

    Well, not so fast. An obscure law passed in 2018 means that there will be a special election in November for district attorney, not a regular one. That means no Democratic primary in May and a nonpartisan "jungle primary" where every candidate is on the November ballot together. Which means a likely runoff in January if a Republican gets in the race—and Democrats don't turn out for runoffs.

    Still, to Gonzalez, it's better than the alternative: If Kemp waits until after May 3 to appoint someone, the election gets pushed to 2022.


  • New Hampshire Students Press Candidates to Remember Poor People in Climate Change Policies



    Photo Credit:  Derek Kouyoumjian

    Deval Patrick speaks at the NH Youth Climate and Clean Energy Town Hall.

    NEW HAMPSHIRE—Students at a youth climate town hall extracted promises from several presidential candidates that their climate-change policies will benefit low-income people, not hurt them. 

    “Equity has to be at the heart of climate policy,” said Pete Buttigieg, who appeared at the NH Youth Climate and Clean Energy Town Hall Wednesday morning, hours after partial returns showed him in first place in Iowa’s Democratic caucuses. The former mayor of South Bend, IN was responding to Dartmouth College MBA student Melina Sanchez Montanes, who asked what he would do to make sure low-income households “don’t bear the brunt of the transition” to cleaner energy. 


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