Stakes are incredibly high in Tuesday’s election

News, Politics

Brian Kemp

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – On election eve, the stakes in the 2018 midterm election could not be higher. That was reflected in the record-setting turnout during the three-week, in-person, advanced voting session that saw 2.1 million Georgians cast their votes.

Here in Dawson County, interest was through the roof. Director of Elections and Registration Glenda Ferguson reported last week that 7,036 residents voted early.

Stacey Abrams

At the top of the ballot is the race for Governor where conservative Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp faces liberal Democrat former House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams.

The candidates could not be more different. Kemp opposes the expansion of Medicaid. Abrams supports expansion. Kemp wants to deport illegal immigrants and ban sanctuary cities. Abrams opposes clamping down on illegal immigration and wants to provide a pathway to citizenship. Kemp wants Georgia to have the toughest abortion restrictions in the U.S. Abrams opposes additional restrictions. Kemp wants to preserve the HOPE scholarship but opposes letting undocumented students access the scholarship. Abrams believes it should be available to all.

Geoff Duncan

The third candidate in the race, Libertarian Ted Metz, could play the spoiler role. Pollsters say the race between Kemp and Abrams is razor thin and neither has crossed the 50 percent barrier that would prevent an unprecedented four-week runoff.

While the governor’s race has gained nationwide attention, there are other important races on the ballot.

Republican Geoff Duncan of Forsyth County and Democrat Sarah Riggs Amico are running for lieutenant governor. The candidates for Secretary of State are Brad Raffensperger (R), John Barrow (R), and Smyth Duval (L).

The race for Attorney General is between Gary Black (R) and Fred Swann (D).

Sarah Amico

Incumbent Republican U.S. Representative Doug Collins faces a challenge from Democrat Josh McCall in the 9th District.

Also on the Dawson County ballot is the race between 7th District State Representative David Ralston (R) and Rick Day (D).

There are also five constitutional amendments for voters to decide and two statewide referenda.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

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Kemp bus tour starts in Dawsonville Monday

News, Politics

DAWSONVILE, Ga. – Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp will kick off his 27-day, across-the-state, “Putting Georgians First” bus tour in Dawson County Monday morning.

Kemp will greet supporters at 8:30 am. at John Megel Chevrolet, 1392 Ga. Hwy. 400 South to start a busy week of connecting Georgia voters.

In announcing the tour, Kemp said, “I look forward to sharing my story, vision, and plan to grow jobs, lower taxes and healthcare costs, strengthen rural Georgia, invest in public education, protect HOPE, and keep Georgia families safe on the Putting Georgians First Bus Tour. As governor, I will work around the clock to ensure that our best days are always ahead.”

That Dawsonville stop will be followed by Monday appearances in Pickens County (10 a.m.), Fannin County (noon), Gilmer County (2 p.m.), Murray County (3:30 p.m.) and Whitfield County (5:30 p.m.).

In the race, which promises to be one of the most visible in the nation, there is a stark difference in the two candidates. Georgia House Speaker David Ralston said, Georgians are going to have the clearest choice that they’ve probably ever had in the general election for election for the office of governor.”

Kemp’s opponent is Democrat Stacey Abrams, a far left-wing Yale law school graduate who supports a strict ban on assault rifles, expanding medicaid and demands the carvings of Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson be sandblasted from Stone Mountain.

Kemp defines his opponent as a liberal who is “backed by billionaires and socialists who want to make Georgia into California.”

Kemp, a populist and strong supporter of President Donald Trump, says the governor’s race is a battle for “literally the soul of our state.” He supports  lowering taxes and strengthening rural counties and opposes stricter gun control and wants to “round up criminal illegals” and have them deported.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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A Message From Rick Day – Vote Day for a Better Way

Election 2018, Politics
The reason I am motivated to serve this district is impatience with the current leadership on the implementation of the cannabis (marijuana) regulatory and industrial systems long overdue. It is time to be part of the rest of the nation and a $60 billion dollar a year industry. I want North GA to be the Napa Valley of cannabis and agricultural hemp. I intend to spend the season meeting and listening to people–to their concerns, and what the state legislature should and should not do for them. For too long, the 7th has had neither meaningful regional leadership nor challenges to their decisions at the ballot. For too long, the corporate status quo established in the highest reaches of State Government dine on the lobbyist’s dime, and mockingly depend on our rural votes. Yet year after year, we see other counties thrive, while we languish as a ‘retirement community and our best and brightest young people move away. The entrenched GOP leadership fails every year to ‘bring home the bacon’. This must stop. We deserve better leadership from our leaders. We deserve more than Proclamations. We need jobs, justice reform, and we need quality affordable healthcare.
We need something different in local representation. ACTUAL representation.

Rick Day says cannabis could be the future of North Georgia

Election 2018, Politics

Blue Ridge, Ga. – Many words were used to describe Rick Day as he exited the Fannin County Democratic meeting on July 2: enthusiastic, informed, entertaining, and passionate.

Day, a 62 year old veteran, is the first from the Democratic party to ever challenge the Speaker of the House, David Ralston, for the seat of Georgia House of Representatives District 7.

One key issue of Day’s platform and arguably one that he shows the most passion for is his pro-cannabis stance and the benefits it could bring to North Georgia.

“Somewhere in the 70’s I discovered cannabis, marijuana, and it has been a lifelong love affair with Mary Jane,” Day said about his position.

Georgia, Georgia House of Representatives, Speaker of the House, District 7, Fannin County, Gilmer County, Dawson County, David Ralston, Rick Day, Republican, Democrat, Election 2018, State Election

Democratic candidate Rick Day hopes to unseat incumbent David Ralston in November.

According to Day, almost 700,000 people have been arrested for minor marijuana possession in Georgia since Ralston’s election to the seat of District 7 in 2002.

“This man is so powerful he could have changed this law,” Day said explaining his take on Ralston’s record. “He only cares about the for-profit prisons that lobby him.”

Day would like to see Georgia move beyond the limited laws passed recently in the state that increased medical marijuana use and see cannabis legalized for recreational use as well.

Stating statistics, Day said that approximately 85 percent of Georgians are in favor of medical marijuana, 70 percent of Republicans are in favor, and 65 percent of Georgians favor cannabis oil.

“If we wait another 10 years, the crops are not going to be worth anything near what it was because it’s going to be so common,” Day spoke of the economic impact of ending the war on marijuana.

Wanting to see both marijuana and hemp become major cash crops for the state of Georgia, Day spoke of the increased tax revenue that this legislation, if passed, would create; up to 1 billion in increased revenue. Day would like to see all citizens of North Georgia benefit from this wealth by using the new revenue to eliminate or dramatically decrease property taxes.

“Thousands of jobs, good, well paying jobs,” Day expanded on the benefits of this move. “Develop the area and work with it, so that it becomes part of our identity without overtaking us.”

“My vision is to turn this (North Georgia) into the Napa Valley of cannabis,” Day enthusiastically spoke of his hope.

Acknowledging other issues facing our area Day said, “There is a growing issue with lack of affordable housing in the district.”

With no shortage of half million dollar homes, Day says that it is very hard to find homes in the $150,000 range where there is an increasingly growing demand.

Offering grants and incentives for builders to construct these more affordable homes is a possible solution that Day sees on this issue.

When it comes to his Republican opponent, Day does not mince words: “Ralston is a con. A bought and paid for conservative. Conservatives are no longer the fiscal stewards they once were or ever represented themselves to be.”

Accusing Ralston of catering to the highest bidder, Day pointed out Ralston’s $400,000 yearly pension and using his position to get his son a lobbying job: “He’s their man. He’s not our man anymore.”

As for Ralston’s impact on his district, Day shared his thoughts on that as well. According to Day, Ralston is a man who holds a position of power in the state of Georgia: “Arguably the most powerful because he’s not tenured with term limits like the governor is, and he can’t even get us one manufacturing center up here. He’s done nothing for this district.”

“I can’t out spend David Ralston. He’s already got $1,000,000 in corporate money in the bank,” Day elaborated on his campaign plans. “I can’t make a lot of promises. I won’t have a lot of political power, but I ain’t David Ralston and I will never be that man.”

Day says that his political platform is simple. Having been shown a kindness when he was a young man, his philosophy is to pay it forward. His litmus test on every issue is “Is this going to be good for our kids? Is this going to be good for our grand-kids?”.

“I oppose the things that are not, and I embrace the things that are good,” Day said of this philosophy.

“I believe in myself and I want you to too,” Day spoke to those gathered to hear his message. “I’m done watching (politics). Now is the time for action. Now is the time to bring David Ralston home.”

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

Speaker David Ralston Attends White House Speakers Conference

Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Speaker David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) is attending the White House State House Speakers Conference. This conference brings together state house speakers from across the country to receive an update on President Trump’s policy initiatives. Several administration officials will meet with the group including Secretary of Housing & Urban Development Ben Carson and Senior Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway.

“I thank President Trump for his invitation, and I appreciate his administration’s continuing outreach to state and local officials,” said Speaker Ralston. “The President understands that our government can be most effective when the federal, state and local levels work together as partners on behalf of the citizens we serve.”

Following the conference, Speaker Ralston will attend the President’s recognition of NASCAR Cup Series Champion Martin Truex, Jr., and his team at the White House.

Speaker Ralston previously visited the White House in February to represent Georgia at President Trump’s infrastructure plan announcement. That proposal would combine public-sector funding with private-sector investments to rebuild and improve the nation’s infrastructure – particularly in rural communities.

“It is refreshing to have a President who leads on issues like tax reform and infrastructure improvements,” said Speaker Ralston. “I am hopeful that Congress will support the President’s infrastructure plan, which would spur economic growth and create jobs across the country.”

 

Ralston Endorsed by Georgia Carry – Vote Ralston

Politics

Our 2nd Amendment rights are not up for debate. That’s why I refuse to entertain gun control activists who seek to undermine our safety and compromise the freedoms guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. From passing “the most pro-gun bill in state history” to ensuring that students, faculty, and visitors can protect themselves on a college campus, I am proud of my record of defending and expanding our 2nd Amendment Rights.

This election, I am once again endorsed by the NRA – National Rifle Association of America and countless #2A supporters throughout the District. Together, we will stand up for our God-given rights and remain “freedom’s safest place.”

UNG gets state funds for new campus

News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – In a recent interview on FYNTV, Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston made an announcement regarding the University of North Georgia’s (UNG) Blue Ridge campus.

Ralston confirmed in the interview that the state has set $5.5 million into a line item to establish a new standalone “brick and mortar” building for the university. The budgeted funds are set for construction only, meaning that the university will be responsible for locating and acquiring a spot suitable for the new campus. Once the college purchases the location, they can utilize the state funds for their new building to expand into that new home in Fannin County.

As such, the location of this facility is yet to be determined. According to Campus Director of Blue Ridge for UNG, Sandy Ott, she hopes to begin construction as soon as possible. Ott spoke with FetchYourNews (FYN) about the fund allocation saying, “We are thrilled with the opportunity to expand the Blue Ridge campus. We are so excited for the opportunities for the students in our region. This is going to have an impact, truly.”

Ott noted some of the major capabilities that a standalone campus will allow including expanded course offerings, lab spaces for sciences and core classes, as well as development space to cater to the region’s specific needs. While college officials are still searching for the best location at this time, Ott confirmed that they are still very early in the process and uncertain if the new standalone campus will see them completely leaving their current location just off of 515 at 83 Dunbarton Farm Road.

UNG has been at that location since 2015, offering opportunities such as dual-enrollment courses for high school students, a full-time program for first-time freshmen, courses for adult learners getting started or returning to college, and continued education programs.

With the passing of the state’s budget, this is now set for UNG to utilize when available. Ott assures FYN they are moving quickly to take advantage of the funds to increase their services as soon as possible for students. See more by checking out the announcement at 14 minutes into FYNTV’s video below.

 

 

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Williamson qualifies to run against Ralston in May Primary

Election 2018

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – As Qualifying Week begins in the state of Georgia, candidates have lined up to officially get their names on the ballot for the May General Primary to be held May 22, 2018, with a voter registration deadline of April 23.

Georgia, Ellijay, Blue Ridge, Fannin, Gilmer, Dawson, Margaret Williamson, David Ralston, Georgia House of Representatives, Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives, District 7, Republican Primary, General Election 2018, Qualifying Week

Williamson qualifies for May General Primary.

One race in particular is being closely watched and it comes from Georgia’s 7th District. The seat currently held by Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives David Ralston is being challenged by Ellijay resident Margaret Williamson.

Williamson made her intentions clear when she announced earlier this year that she would be seeking the Republican nomination for the General Election to be held Nov. 6, 2018.

Williamson acknowledged in a statement previously released to FetchYourNews that she had mailed the “Declaration to Accept Campaign Contributions” form to the Georgia State Transparency & Campaign Finance Committee.

A 37 year resident of Gilmer County, Williamson says, “I consider it my home. My husband John and I raised our 4 children here and now enjoy our reward, the 11 of our 15 grandchildren who live in the county.”

Having studied Engineering, Marketing and Business, worked as a Healthcare professional, and owned a small business, Williamson says that her involvement in politics spans over 2 decades when she worked on her first campaign in 1994.

“As a regular visitor to the Georgia Capitol I keep informed on current legislation, especially those that affect the taxpayers of the Georgia State District 7,” Williamson said explaining that since 1994 she has remained active and aware in politics.

Williamson added, “It is distressing to see bills passed that fail to meet our needs but only help our big business and special interests groups, bills that increase our taxes, and bills that burden us with unfunded mandates, regulations, and growing number of fees that hurt our economy.”

Williamson discussed the economy of our area, citing that while leadership in Georgia likes to dote Georgia as the number 1 place to do business, that statistics of this claim does not add up.

Georgia, Ellijay, Blue Ridge, Fannin, Gilmer, Dawson, Margaret Williamson, David Ralston, Georgia House of Representatives, Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives, District 7, Republican Primary, General Election 2018, Qualifying Week

Williamson makes her candidacy official by qualifying on March 5.

In Georgia State District 7 the average annual income per household is below that of the national and state averages according to Williamson. She attributes this assessment to high property taxes, increasing school taxes, fees, penalties, regulations, and fuel taxes which all decrease a family’s spendable income.

Williamson says there is no one fix and added, “Without growing our tax digest, bringing in more revenue from sales tax, improving our economy, we would be left with raising our millage rate and who wants that?”

“We live in one of the most beautiful parts of the U.S.,” Williamson spoke of the growing tourism to our area. “This industry now is the biggest contributor to our economy.”

“We need to work together to make our counties even more attractive,” Williamson added, “without compromising our Conservative North Georgia values.”

“I have said from the very beginning of my campaign that I am not running against,” Williamson spoke of her intentions in the upcoming year,”I am running for the people in District 7. I will work diligently to meet their needs and not those of a minority of special interests groups.”

Upon completing the qualifying process yesterday, Williamson will continue campaigning in hopes of overcoming incumbent Ralston in the May General Primary.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

Author

Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

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