Most of the political talk for the last few weeks has centered on the US Senate seat now open in 2014 – and for good reason. Sen. Saxby Chambliss’ retirement is an important moment in Georgia politics.
But let’s not lose sight of another vulnerable seat, which could be, were the right stars to align, a fight just as important as the open Senate seat: Governor.
That’s right, Governor Deal shouldn’t be sitting as comfortably as Georgia’s politcos and mainstream media would want you to believe.
Hear me out.
Better Georgia recently conducted our fifth statewide issues poll in a little over a year. There’s a lot of really interesting data in the toplines and I encourage everyone to download them read them for themselves.
Download here at: BetterGeorgia.com/2013Q1
But here’s what we know about Deal’s re-election chances:
Gov. Deal’s approval rating has slumped to 46 percent and only 32 percent of registered voters believe that Georgia is headed in the right direction, compared with a majority, 52 percent, believing our state is headed down the wrong track.
When asked to think ahead to the next general election for Governor in 2014 only 29 percent would vote to re-elect Nathan Deal while 41 would prefer “someone else”.
While many of these folks are Republican who will vote for Gov. Deal if he is the nominee they would still prefer someone else.
With 42 percent of Republican primary voters undecided and 35 percent wanting someone more conservative that leaves only a quarter of Republicans excited to support Gov. Deal. You can imagine an ambitious, prominent Republican picking this one-to-one primary over the crowded field for US Senate.
But here’s the great news.
The Governor has much more immediate problems than next year’s Republican Primary. His politically toxic appointment of disgraced former senator Chip Rogers has dogged the news since mid-December and (not surprisingly) voters are not happy with the Governor.
A whopping 62 percent of voters find Gov. Deal’s appointment of Chip Rogers to be a convincing reason to vote against him.
In more than a full year of testing criticisms against Gov. Deal no single issue has stirred as much anger as this political appointment. Even amongst voters who are certain to vote in the GOP primary 49 percent responded that it was a convincing reason to vote against the Governor.
So while everyone needs to go to FireChipRogers.com because we’re 4,000 strong and growing, I also kind of hope Gov. Deal keeps fighting the inevitable departure of Chip Rogers as long as possible.
Because every day between today and that impending day we’re connecting with more and more voters across Georgia who have had enough of this Governor and conservative supermajority failing to meet our states biggest challenges while using our tax dollars to solve the Governor’s political problems.
Sign and spread this important petition, please. Despite their best efforts they cannot ignore us.
The Governor’s “inevitable re-election” is far from a Done Deal.
Don Weigel is the Political Director for Better Georgia, the state’s fastest growing progressive advocacy organization. He previously worked for the Georgia House Democratic Caucus for three years. www.bettergeorgia.com