published Friday, August 3rd, 2012

A few surprises in Georgia

There's nothing predictable about Election Day. Sure, some candidates are odds-on favorites to win, and do. But there are always a handful of races and issues that produce surprises. So it was Tuesday in Georgia, where there were a few stunners and several close calls in statewide balloting.

The biggest surprises were in races between Walker County Sole Commissioner Bebe Heiskell and Paul Shaw, and between incumbent Lookout Mountain Judicial Circuit District Attorney Herbert "Buzz" Franklin and Doug Woodruff. Franklin won by 43 votes. Heiskell triumphed by less than 250. Shaw says he will seek a recount. Woodruff likely will do the same.

That's each candidate's right, though such requests often do not fare well. Woodruff appears to have a stronger case with less than 50 votes separating the candidates for a post that serves four counties. A recount that shifts even a few votes and the addition of heretofore uncounted provisional or military ballots could change the outcome.

Shaw's effort seems less viable given the margin of Heiskell's victory. Indeed, even the question of a recount in the commissioner's race is permissible remains to be determined.

Elsewhere in Northwest Georgia, incumbents generally fared well, though there were a couple of mild upsets and a few races -- most notably for sheriff in both Catoosa and Dade counties — that will require runoffs later this month. Issues on the ballots seemed to follow form as well.

Mot observers expected Whitfield County voters to approve a 1 percent sales tax increase for city and county schools. Varnell voters were expected to approve Sunday alcohol sales. Those forecasts proved true. In Dade County, pre-election sentiment seemed to back taxpayer support for the public library. Tuesday's advisory vote confirmed that by an overwhelming majority. There's no certainty that the straw poll will prompt county officials to adopt a more proactive view toward the library, though it should.

Voters across the state, for the most part, delivered a thumping defeat to the proposed 1-cent Transportation Special Local Option Sales Tax (T-SPLOST). The defeat ends the possibility of a statewide transportation-specific tax hike. It does not eliminate the state's need to update transportation infrastructure. Ultimately, Georgians still will have to pay for construction and repairs.

Georgia voters have spoken for the moment. In doing so, they've provided fodder for both post-election analysis and for the formulation of predictions about fall elections to come.

2
Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
conservative said...

It is obvious that America is opposed to higher taxes.

August 3, 2012 at 8:03 a.m.

It's obvious that starvation isn't the way to prosperity.

But people will take a cheap pass today and ignore their tomorrow.

However there's two examples there that show support for local taxes. Apparently people do favor their own benefits. Now if only they realize they're in one big country.

August 3, 2012 at 12:45 p.m.
please login to post a comment

videos »         

photos »         

e-edition »

advertisement
advertisement

Find a Business

400 East 11th St., Chattanooga, TN 37403
General Information (423) 756-6900
Copyright, Permissions, Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, Ethics policy - Copyright ©2014, Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc. All rights reserved.
This document may not be reprinted without the express written permission of Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc.