Matt Towery

So the pundits, particularly those who were catching the rise of Colbert in South Carolina, view the Georgia race as one in which Broun, whose past comments might fly in a primary but be a Todd (of the "legitimate rape" statement) Akin-like problem against a conservative Democrat in the general election. Those comments include condemning the theory of evolution and his suggestion that a civilian national service corps under President Obama might somehow be reflective of what the Nazis created under Adolf Hitler.

Thus comes the notion that Broun could win a much anticipated highly conservative GOP primary in Georgia, but lose to a conservative Democrat in November.

But then came Tuesday's vote in South Carolina. A GOP nominee who had more than just words to explain trounced a candidate with a household-known last name (Colbert is the sister of comedian Stephen Colbert). So the assumption that a Paul Broun who has ventured into non-politically correct land more than once would be toast in the ultimate contest for Chambliss' seat might not be such a safe one to make.

And the most likely Georgia Democrat to take a Republican down in 2014, Rep. John Barrow, a truly conservative Democrat (and endangered political species), announced this week that he won't be joining the race.

Now the name Democrats seem focused on is that of Michelle Nunn, daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn. Ms. Nunn is extremely bright, heads up a huge volunteer organization and could garner support from women voters in Georgia, some of which have since November drifted into the self-described "moderately conservative" category.

Of course, a "moderate conservative" in Georgia may not reflect even the conservative Democratic Party of the past Sam Nunn days. While Nunn was highly respected, he lost much of his political steam when he chose to oppose President George H.W. Bush's Operation Desert Storm in 1991. Nunn chose not to seek re-election the following year. And his name identification, as is the case for all retired politicians, exist mainly with hardcore political junkies.

But we have learned from South Carolina and in the case of Broun, who came from Democratic stock, voters have a short memory. Now the question is, how will these candidates align themselves? Will Georgia take the course South Carolina seemed to be taking for a while, or will the result mirror Sanford's victory? The political winds are blowing, and plenty of fingers are likely in the air.


Matt Towery

Matt Towery is a former National Republican legislator of the year and author of Powerchicks: How Women Will Dominate America.
 
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