Georgia's not a presidential battleground - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Georgia's not a presidential battleground

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July 19, 2004

Albany-- Most polls show the upcoming presidential election will once again be extremely close. You probably expect the candidates to be concerned about every single, but you may be wrong.  Georgia voters have reason to feel ignored.

The major candidates are rolling out new television commercials, but you probably won't see of them. "The polling data is indicating that this is not a battleground state," Darton College Political Science Professor Roger Marietta said. The campaigns figure 17 states are battlegrounds, states that could go either for Bush or Kerry. The candidates are spending nearly all their campaign time and money there.

Marietta understands the strateg, but doesn't necessarily like it. "I think it could be a mistake, and I think they should be competing," Mariett said. He's a Democrat and he hopes the addition of John Edwards to the ticket will close President Bush's big lead in the polls in Georgia. He said, "I think there will be the potential to turn this into a battleground state."

Republican Dougherty County Commissioner Lamar Hudgins doesn't think Edwards can make that big a difference. He said, "I'm confident of the outcome for President Bush. I feel like he'll carry Georgia well."

Apparently, President Bush and even Senator Kerry agree. Neither candidate even has a Georgia campaign headquarters right now. Last week, neither campaign ran a single commercial on WALB, but a station in the battleground area of Toledo, Ohio ran nearly 200 presidential commercials.

Hudgins hopes that lack of attention from the candidates won't discourage Georgia voters. "Georgians know what's important, and I think they'll do their civic duty and vote."

One thing many Georgia Republicans and Democrats agree on, they'd like both candidates to pay us a visit. "I'd love to see the president come of course, but I don't think it's very likely," Hudgins said.

It's not likely because in a race that's so close, the candidates don't want to waste any of their fight in a state they don't consider a battleground.

 

posted at 10:40 p.m. by ben.roberts@walb.com