DAWSONVILLE, Ga. — Advanced voting for the 2018 General Election begins next week and Georgia is the home of one of the most intriguing – and expensive — gubernatorial races in the nation.
Pollsters say the race is neck and neck. On Sept. 6, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution/Channel 2 Action News poll had it 45 percent for Republican Brian Kemp, 45 percent for Democrat Stacey Abrams, 2 percent for independent Ted Metz and 7.5 percent undecided.
Folks who make a living analyzing political races say the Democrats had the momentum and that anger over President Donald Trump’s policies was driving increased voter registration on the left. But that was before the bitterly divisive hearings for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Infuriated by the “guilty until proven innocent,” sexual assault accusations of the liberal left, Republicans have seized the momentum and can be expected to turnout in record numbers to support Kemp.
Health insurance is a key policy difference between the two leading candidates. Abrams supports Medicaid expansion. Kemp says it would bankrupt the state.
Kemp carries the endorsement of President Donald Trump into the election. Abrams is the darling of Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton, Democrats who hope to change the color of Georgia from red to blue.
Advanced voting will be held Monday through Friday from Oct 15 through November 2 between the hours of 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Voters may also cast a ballot on Saturday Oct. 27 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. All advanced voting in Dawson County will take place at the Board of Elections Office, 96 Academy office in Dawsonville.
For questions about your voting location and/or status, call 706-344-3640.
The General Election will be held Tuesday, Nov. 6 from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., when all precincts will be open.
A large number of candidates will appear on the ballot, but are running unopposed. They include State Senator Steve Gooch, State Representative Kevin Tanner, Northeast Judicial District Attorney Lee Darragh, County Commissioner District 1 Sharon R. Fausett, County Commissioner-elect District 3 Tim Satterfield, Board of Education At-Large William S. Wade, Board of Education District 3 Karen Armstrong.
In addition to choosing political candidates, voters will have an opportunity to vote on five proposed Constitutional amendments and two statewide referendums.
DAWSON COUNTY BALLOT
Brian Kemp (R ) Stacey Abrams(D) Ted Met (I)
Geoff Duncan (R) Sarah Riggs Amico (D)
Secretary of State
Brad Raffensperger (R ) John Barrow (D)
Chris Carr (R ) Charlie Bailey (D)
Gary Black (R ) Fred Swann (D)
Jim Beck (R ) Janice Laws (D ) Donnie Foster (I)
State School Superintendent
Richard Woods (R ) Otha Thornton, Jr. (D)
Mark Butler (R ) Richard Keatley
U.S. House of Representatives 9th District
Doug Collins (R ) Josh McCall (D)
State Representatives 7th District
David Ralston (R ) Rick Day (D)
DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – There were no surprises in Tuesday’s general primary election in Dawson County. District 9 State Rep. Kevin Tanner (R-Dawson) easily beat back a challenge from Forsyth County’s Mark Hajduk, winning 80.88 percent of the votes (1,929) to Hajduk’s 456 votes.
Tanner’s victory was widely anticipated. He is the highly respected former Dawson County Manager, as well as a former firefighter and chief deputy for the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office. He also had a sizable geographic advantage because 90 percent of the voting population resides in Dawson County.
Former Deputy Fire Chief Tim Satterfield and District 3 County Commissioner Sharon Fausett can now take a deep breath and wait to take the oath of office in January. Neither Satterfield, who will replace Jimmy Hamby on the Board of Commissioners, nor Fausett had a primary challenger.
At-large Board of Education member William S. Wade will also return to that post. Wade was unopposed.
District 3 Board of Education member Karen Armstrong defeated her primary challenger, Joe Stapp, winning 1,825 votes to 786.
House Speaker David Ralston defeated Margaret Williamson 5,750 to 2,009 in the race for Georgia House District 7.
District 51 State Senator Steve Gooch did not have a primary opponent.
In the up ballot, statewide elections that drew most of the voters to the polls, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle and Secretary of State Brian Kemp will face a runoff. In a five-candidate field, Cagle won by a slight margin over Kemp by receiving 39 percent of the votes (227,170 total votes) to Kemp’s 26 percent or 150,051 total votes.
The winner of that race will face Democrat Stacey Abrams in the November General election. Abrams easily defeated her rival Stacey Evans, winning 76 percent of the vote statewide.
There will also be a runoff in the Lieutenant Governor’s race where David Shafer fell just shy of a clear win. Shafer pulled in a majority of the votes, 256,230, but it was not enough to avoid a runoff with Geoff Duncan in July. Duncan received 27 percent of the votes (140,741).
The winner of that runoff will face Democrat Sarah Riggs Amico in November. Amico pulled in 56 percent of the votes (245,325) defeating opponent Triana James who received 44 percent.
Campaigns have not ended for Brad Raffensperger or David Belle Isle as they will also face off in a November runoff for secretary of state. Raffensperger received 35 percent of the votes (178,502), moving him into top position. Belle Isle received 29 percent or 145,915 total votes.
Democrat John Barrow will face the winner of that runoff in November. Barrow was able to make a clean win with 52 percent over challengers Dee Dawkins-Haigler and Rakeim Hadley.
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DAWSONVILLE — With the May 24th General Primary election day fast approaching, Director of Elections and Registration Glenda Ferguson and her staff have been kept busy during the advanced voting period.
“So far, as of 9 a.m. Friday, 990 ballots have been cast for an average of about 100 per day,” Ferguson said. “I always want to see more, but I’ve been very pleased with the turnout so far. ”
Ferguson said in 2012, about 40 percent of the county’s 15,800 voters waited until election day to cast a ballot. If that percentage holds true this year, total turnout could approach 8,000.
Among the key races to be decided are Dawson County Sheriff where Tony Wooten, Jeff Johnson, Jeff Perry and Frank Sosebee are the candidates.
Voters must also decide who will fill the Ninth District Congressional seat currently held by Doug Collins. Collins is facing a serious challenge from former 10th District Congressman Paul Broun, Lanier Tea Party Patriots founder Mike Scupin, White County educator Roger Fitzpatrick and retired Army and National Guard Brigadier General Bernie Fontaine.
At the state level, District 51 State Senator Steve Gooch of Dahlonega is being challenged by John Williamson, co-founder of the Gilmer County Tea Party.
Locally, voters must fill two vacant seats on the Board of Commissioners after Chairman Mike Berg and District 2 Commissioner James Swafford decided not to run again.
Bill Thurmond and Peter J. Hill will compete for the Chairman’s seat and Chris Gaines and Tim Davis are the candidates in District 2. In District 4, incumbent Julie Nix has drawn a challenge from Heather Hulsebus, former Chairwoman of the Dawson County Republican Party.
The Tax Commissioner race features four candidates, Andi Henson Juliette, Karin McKee, Johnny Glass and Nicole Stewart.
No Democrats have qualified in any of the races, so the winner of the General Primary will take office in January.
Union County Republican Party / Union -Towns TEA Party Forum 4/30/2016.
Scroll down to watch video of each forum.