Republican Brad Raffensperger got 67.1 percent of the vote in Oconee County in the runoff for secretary of state on Tuesday, up just slightly from his 66.8 percent vote on Nov. 6.
Democrat John Barrow received 32.9 percent of the vote in Oconee County on Tuesday, up from the 30.7 percent he received in the three-way contest on Nov. 6.
Democrat Lindy Miller received 31.9 percent, up from the 27.3 percent she received in the three-way race on Nov. 6.
The Athens-Clarke County Board of Elections broke state law when it went into executive session in September to discuss opening an early voting site at Cedar Shoals High School, according to the ACC Attorney’s office.
Tension continued in the Board of Elections on Tuesday as they discussed the closed-door meeting. The attorney’s office concluded the board was in violation of the Georgia Open Meetings act. Assistant county attorney John Hawkins provided the results of the review to board members.
On Sept. 4, the BOE decided to go to executive session to discuss “personnel matters” since more poll workers would be needed for an additional early voting location. Under the Open Meetings Act, the board is permitted to go to executive session if it involved personnel matters. However, other topics were discussed, and the personnel exemption is meant to cover discussions about specific employees or candidates for positions, not hiring more personnel in general.
Democrat John Barrow lost his bid to become Georgia's secretary of state Tuesday to Republican Brad Raffensperger, and Republican incumbent Chuck Eaton kept his seat on the Public Service Commission, defeating Democrat Lindy Miller.
Barrow's loss means that a Republican will be running Georgia's elections in 2020—when President Donald Trump and one of his staunchest supporters, GOP Sen. David Perdue, are on the ballot—and 2024, when Gov.-elect Brian Kemp will be up for re-election.
It also comes amid widespread accusations among Democrats that voter suppression efforts under Kemp, the former secretary of state, cost Democrat Stacey Abrams the gubernatorial election.
Photo Credit: Blake Aued
"Whoever wants it more wins," Athens Democrat John Barrow told a small group of supporters during a last-minute campaign stop on Monday night, just hours before polls opened for a runoff election for secretary of state. "We need all the hay in the barn we can get."
Barrow is running to be Georgia's top election official, and Stacey Abrams supporters need no reminder of how important that position can be after her narrow loss to Republican Brian Kemp last month amidst widespread accusations of voter suppression and irregularities at the polls.
"Y'all know the stakes," Barrow said. "I'm running for an office nobody knew anything about. Now the whole country has gotten a crash course."
Photo Credit: Savannah Cole
It’s been four months since Bird scooters began hatching around downtown Athens and soaring through the University of Georgia campus in August as part of the company’s nationwide “University Pop-Up Tour.”
After a week, university officials began confiscating Birds on campus, and ACCPD and UGAPD later started ticketing riders who did not obey the law. Now, Bird scooters are causing another problem for University of Georgia officials since the company has refused to pick up the impounded scooters or pay fines.
As of Nov. 19, the University of Georgia had confiscated a total of 1,096 Bird scooters since August and stored them in the Carlton Street parking deck. At that time, Bird owed the university $504,360, according to UGA spokesperson Rebecca Beeler.
The Watkinsville City Council has hired Athens-Clarke County Commissioner Sharyn Dickerson as its first-ever city administrator, according to the Oconee Enterprise.
“I’m super, super excited about the vision this mayor and council have,” Dickerson told the Enterprise. “I’m so grateful for the meaningful, thoughtful, deliberative process that the mayor and council have gone through to bring someone in. It’s a dream job; it’s my dream job, and I look forward to serving the community.”
Republican Brad Raffensperger was a no-show for an Atlanta Press Club debate with Democrat John Barrow for the runoff for secretary of state.
The debate aired Tuesday on Georgia Public Broadcasting. Raffensperger claimed he had a scheduling conflict, but the press club said it had been trying to negotiate a date and time for almost three weeks.
His absence allowed Barrow—a former congressman and Harvard Law graduate—to run roughshod over an empty podium as he contrasted himself with both Raffensperger and Gov.-elect Brian Kemp, who was widely criticized for voter suppression as secretary of state while overseeing his own election.
Even though Stacey Abrams fell a bit short in her bid for governor, there will still be a runoff Dec. 4.
Athens’ own John Barrow faces Republican Brad Raffensperger for secretary of state, so if you’re not happy with the way the election was conducted under Brian Kemp, you know what to do. Barrow may be a centrist white guy who doesn’t quite give you that tingly feeling Abrams did, but he wants to get rid of Georgia’s antiquated voting machines, and he’s certainly not going to go along with suppressing minority voters on behalf of the GOP. The importance of having a Democrat in this office come 2020 can’t be overstated.
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