Georgia Republicans Steer Right With Party Picks

Tuesday, 21 May 2013 03:22 PM

By John Gizzi

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Georgia Republicans made it clear last weekend at their state convention that the party is remaining strongly conservative as it prepares for the re-election of Gov. Nathan Deal and begins to choose a nominee to succeed outgoing Sen. Saxby Chambliss.

Peach State Republicans elected John Padgett of Athens, easily the most conservative candidate in the contested race, as the new state GOP chairman. Elected first vice chairman was Michael McNeely, considered a young up-and-coming Republican and, as his supporters say, "a conservative who happens to be black."

Meanwhile, the field of GOP contenders vying to succeed Chambliss continues to grow.

Former Secretary of State Karen Handel last week entered the race that now includes three congressmen and millionaire businessman David Perdue, cousin of former Gov. Sonny Perdue.

The hottest rumor at the state convention was that another entry would soon join the Senate sweepstakes: Kelly Loeffler, a vice president of the Atlanta-based Intercontinental Exchange.

"Kelly is attractive, a social conservative, and has also been a big donor to various Georgia Republicans over the years," Phil Kent, Augusta public relations man and longtime conservative activist, told Newsmax.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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