“GOP CIVIL WAR RATTLES GEORGIA REPUBLICANS” AS THEY STRUGGLE TO MAKE UP GROUND IN RUNOFF. New reporting this week revealed just how concerned Georgia GOP leaders are that “a full-blown civil war” threatens to tear apart Republicans at this critical juncture. The state GOP was already facing the fall out of the bitter rivalry between Senator Kelly Loeffler and Congressman Doug Collins. Now the party has “plunged into deeper infighting” as President Trump — as well as Senators Loeffler and David Perdue — have spent recent days “attacking top Georgia Republicans.” Now GOP leaders are grappling with “the internal strains” as they try to rally support for two weak, flawed incumbents in January’s runoff and Republican officials are privately expressing concerns that the intra-party fighting “risks alienating independent-leaning voters” in a moment when they need every voter they can get. While Republicans are dealing with messy infighting in their own ranks, Democrats are united and traveling the state to mobilize Georgia voters to send new leadership to the Senate.
PERDUE CONTINUES HIS STREAK OF SHADY, WELL-TIMED STOCK TRADES. Senator David Perdue has once again “engaged in conspicuously timed trading.” The wealthy former corporate insider is under new scrutiny after a bombshell Daily Beast report revealed that Perdue bought stock in a defense contractor for the first time as he assumed the role of chairing the subcommittee with jurisdiction over the company’s federal priorities, helped steer lucrative federal funding to projects involving the same company, and subsequently dumped his shares at a profit. And this isn’t the first time Perdue’s been in hot water for self-dealing while in office. Earlier this year, Perdue came under fire for pushing to water down prepaid debit card rules while buying “stock in a company that stood to benefit from the rollback of those regulations” and in the early days of the pandemic, Perdue was caught engaging in “heavy trading” beginning the very same day the Senate held a private coronavirus briefing.
NEW REPORTING REVEALS PERDUE PUSHED FOR A LUCRATIVE TAX BREAK FOR WEALTHY CAMPAIGN DONORS. A new investigation from ProPublica detailed how Senator David Perdue “privately pushed Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to give wealthy sports owners a lucrative tax break last year.” The previously unreported letter was written and signed only by Senator Perdue and focused on one “extremely narrow rule” affecting “only a small set of the richest Americans.” ProPublica’s review of Perdue’s political donations revealed that Perdue “has taken more than $425,000 from the owners of professional sports teams and their relatives” — including his Senate colleague Kelly Loeffler, who is the co-owner of a WNBA team in Atlanta. Perdue refused to answer questions about what prompted his lobbying for a lucrative tax break for wealthy sports team owners. ProPublica: Georgia Senator David Perdue Privately Pushed for a Tax Break for Rich Sports Teamowners
WITH A RECORD LIKE THAT, IT’S NO WONDER PERDUE IS CHICKENING OUT OF DEBATES. Not only was Perdue dealing with brutal headlines and well-deserved scrutiny for his conveniently timed stock trades and corrupt self-dealing for donors this week, the vulnerable incumbent faced an onslaught of critical coverage after ducking debates in the Georgia runoffs and refusing to defend his toxic record in front of Georgia voters. While Jon Ossoff has already accepted debate invitations from local news hosts, Perdue has ducked at least one of the local news invitations and “made it clear that he doesn’t plan on debating Ossoff again.” As a result, Perdue will be replaced by an empty podium at an upcoming Atlanta Press Club debate, an apt symbol for his failure of leadership throughout the pandemic. It’s hardly surprising Perdue is chickening out of the debates: the last time he took the debate stage he was taken to task by Ossoff for prioritizing his personal stock portfolio during the pandemic and attacking Georgians’ health care.
AND PERDUE IS STILL HIDING FROM LOCAL PRESS. It’s been over two weeks since Perdue last spoke to members of Georgia’s press corps. Despite multiple attempts from local reporters to speak with their Senator who’s asking voters for another six years in Washington, Perdue has chosen to only make himself available to Fox News and Mike Huckabee, and he has failed to articulate why Georgia voters should re-elect him. Perdue is afraid to face any real scrutiny about his stock trading scandals and his crusade to take away Georgians’ health care in the middle of a pandemic.
LOEFFLER VIOLATES FEDERAL LAW AND SENATE ETHICS RULES. Kelly Loeffler illegally solicited political contributions and promoted her campaign website from inside a U.S. Senate building this week, a clear violation of the prohibition against soliciting campaign contributions in federal buildings. She is now facing multiple complaints requesting investigations from the Senate Ethics Committee and the Department of Justice, including from the nonpartisan watchdog group Campaign Legal Center. It wasn’t the first time Loeffler has raised major red flags –– since being appointed last year, Loeffler has been plagued by scandal, from a corrupt appointment process, to a series of conflicts of interest, accusations of insider trading, and more. The unelected senator and political mega-donor must answer why she blatantly violated federal law and Senate ethics rules.
LOEFFLER MAY HAVE VIOLATED FEDERAL LAW AND SENATE ETHICS RULES…AGAIN. Not a typo – Kelly Loeffler landed in hot water again for potentially violating federal law and Senate ethics rules a second time this week. A bombshell new Salon report uncovered that Loeffler “appears to have omitted a holding company from her federally mandated financial disclosures.” If Loeffler knowingly falsified the information on her personal financial disclosures, “it would amount to a violation of Senate ethics rules as well as a federal law which makes it a crime to ‘falsify any information’ or ‘fail to file or report any information’ that is required.” Loeffler has already come under fire for taking advantage of “a loophole in President Trump’s 2017 tax bill” to write off her campaign jet and let “the government eat the cost.” Salon: Kelly Loeffler’s disclosures appear to omit the holding company that operates her private jet
POLITIFACT VALIDATES CLAIMS THAT LOEFFLER BACKS ‘GETTING RID OF HEALTH CARE.’ Here’s what PolitiFact, the nonpartisan fact checker, found in its analysis:
REMINDER: LOEFFLER’S ATTEMPT TO REWRITE TOXIC HEALTH CARE RECORD IS A SHAM. Unelected Senator Kelly Loeffler tried to rewrite her toxic record on health care by releasing a new “plan” that’s short on substance and fails to guarantee coverage protections for the nearly 2 million Georgians with a pre-existing condition –– instead, it actually promotes junk insurance plans that can deny pre-existing conditions coverage. This last-ditch effort before the runoff can’t erase Loeffler’s history of supporting the dangerous lawsuit to end the entire Affordable Care Act and erase pre-existing conditions protections.
LOEFFLER AND PERDUE HAVE YET TO ANSWER FOR LINDSEY GRAHAM’S PUSH TO TOSS OUT GEORGIANS’ VOTES. There’s been radio silence from Senators Loeffler and Perdue after reporting this week revealed that Senator Lindsey Graham “appeared to suggest” that the Georgia Secretary of State “find a way to toss legally cast ballots” from the November election after President-elect Joe Biden won the state. Graham has pledged $1 million from his campaign to the GOP’s runoff efforts, and Loeffler and Perdue have not answered if they stand by this shocking suggestion from their political ally to trash legal ballots as they accept Graham’s support. But don’t hold your breath on Loeffler or Perdue speaking out––the two vulnerable incumbents have already folded under pressure from their party leadership in Washington when they leveled their own set of unfounded claims against GOP election administrators in Georgia last week. Washington Post: Ga. secretary of state says fellow Republicans are pressuring him to find ways to exclude ballots
VALDOSTA DAILY TIMES EDITORIAL: LOEFFLER AND PERDUE “FAILED THE PEOPLE OF GEORGIA.” The Valdosta Daily Times Editorial Board eviscerated Loeffler and Perdue for their irresponsible allegations against Georgia election administrators, writing that they “failed the people of Georgia” and “their senseless assault on the 2020 presidential election in our state is reckless and irresponsible.” The Valdosta Daily Times is the second local editorial board to slam Loeffler and Perdue for folding under pressure from their party leadership–last week, the AJC Editorial Board rebuked the two vulnerable incumbents in a front page editorial for their “dangerous behavior.” Valdosta Daily Times: EDITORIAL: Perdue, Loeffler let Republicans, Georgians down
NEW VIDEO: REPUBLICANS ON LOEFFLER’S BOUGHT-AND-PAID-FOR POLITICS. It’s no secret that unelected Senator Kelly Loeffler and her former rival Congressman Doug Collins pulled no punches in their “brutal feud” as the two Republicans duked it out in a “scorched-earth” fight to make it to the runoff. As Loeffler scrambles to pull her divided party back together, the Democratic Party of Georgia released a new video with Republicans’ worst attacks on Loeffler, highlighting her shady stock trades and corrupt politics. WATCH:
GEORGIA AD WATCH
– Jon Ossoff released three new ads this week:
WHAT GEORGIANS ARE READING
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