Qualifying ended this week, but on Saturday the spin began. The Democrats trumpeted the fact that they had qualified the most Democratic candidates since "Reconstruction."
Is the Democratic Party actually crowing about qualifying the most Democrats since the Democratic Party in Georgia started stripping away the rights of newly freed slaves to vote?
The AJC quickly picked up on the Democratic Party press release making a big deal about the 800+ Democrats who qualified across the state, especially the 187 who qualified for legislative seats, the most since 1996.
However, in 1996, Georgia Democrats ran the State House, State Senate, and had most of the statewide constitutional officers, and typically incumbents are not challenged in the primary.
While Republicans were winning the state at the federal level (Bob Dole would carry Georgia in 1996 after Bill Clinton carried it in 1992), we were still searching for relevancy at the state and local level.
And while the Democrats are challenging in every Congressional seat, the first time since 2008 that has happened, the GOP is taking on every Democratic member of Congress too, something that is not a common occurrence. What's more, over 1,500 Republicans qualified across Georgia for local, state, and federal office.
In Cobb, we did not shy away from challenging supposedly "safe" Democrats either with Jim Hickey taking on Erica "Publix" Thomas (should she win her primary) and Stephen George facing off against Democrat Michael Smith.
Then there is Rose Wing (HD-37) and Taryn Bowman (HD-40), both are challenging incumbents that flipped from red to blue in 2018. And while several Democrats are facing primary challenges in their Cobb legislative seats, the same is not so for our Republican General Assembly members, none of whom had primary challengers. There is a Democratic Primary to challenge Sen. Lindsey Tippins, there are also Democratic primaries in House Districts 35, 39, 42, and 46.
Locally, however, it was two countywide elected Republicans who saw themselves re-elected for four more years as neither State Court Clerk Angie Davis or Tax Commissioner Carla Jackson saw any challenge.