If anyone is keeping score, in predicting races in Georgia I got six right, two wrong, and a couple mixed.
The correct ones were Saxby Chambliss winning the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate; Kathy Cox winning the GOP nomination for school superintendent, and Barbara Christmas in a runoff with Joe Martin for the Democrats; and Charlie Norwood easily winning the nomination for a return to his congressional seat.
The iffy ones include the governors race, in which Id predicted Sonny Perdue taking the most votes and getting a runoff challenge from Linda Schrenko. Instead, Perdue got 52 percent of the vote and heads for a November showdown with Roy Barnes. In the lieutenant governors race, Mike Beatty didnt win outright, but is in a runoff for the GOP nomination.
And in the 12th District congressional race, Charles Walker Jr. is in a runoff with Ben Allen instead of a surprisingly (well, to me, anyway) weak showing by Chuck Pardue, who can pretty much kiss any thoughts of high political office goodbye after his second anemic showing in a congressional race.
My predictions were wrong on the Republican race for secretary of state. Vernadette Ramirez Broyles is barely in a runoff with the top vote-getter, Charlie Bailey. Everybody was wrong, me included, on the outcome of the Republican side of the 12th District; Max Burns beat Barbara Dooley. My early prediction is that he will go on to lose to Charles Walker Jr. in November.
A little side comment: Any conservative or Repub-lican who uses the name Champ to refer to state Senate Majority Leader Charles Walkers political heir ought to have his or her mouth washed out with soap. It is Charles Walker Jr. If he wants to wear daddys suit, make him carry the baggage of the name, too.
Blasts from the past
Speaking of baggage, it is an amazing coincidence that Tony Mundy and Ed McIn-tyre each made political headlines in the same week, 20 years after the two were earning substantial notoriety in Augusta.
Mundy is in a runoff with Mark Devoti for Columbia Countys District 3 County Commission seat. He is 20 years removed from a host of political shenanigans and skullduggery that darken his south Richmond County roots. Mundy moved away from his political linkage and settled near Harlem 10 years ago, but time doesnt erase the past - it just dims some folks memories.
Likewise, McIntyre - who finally, to no ones surprise, declared his intention to run again for mayor of Augusta - is 20 years away from the time he spent in federal prison. Hes kept his nose clean since getting his civil rights restored, but voters havent forgotten that he abused the office the last time he held it.
Will Mundy and McIntyre get redemption? That depends on whether theyve learned from their past mistakes - and whether voters believe they wont be inclined to repeat them.
Charlie & Linda
For Columbia Countys wider ambitions, the results Tuesday were mixed. Our own Charlie Norwood easily won, and will handily thrash his Democratic opponent in November. The guys name is Barry Gordon Irwin; hes a lawyer and goat-farmer; and he is just plain weird. Irwin reminds me of Kenneth Winters, who ran for mayor of Augusta in 1998 and 1995, and made building a monorail the centerpiece of his losing campaign.
Meanwhile, our own Linda Schrenko will come back home after losing a bid for the Republican Partys nomination for governor. She should focus all her attention on her current job during her final four months in office as state school superintendent, and then come home to a warm welcome and early retirement in Columbia County.
(Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail comments to barrypaschal@ yahoo.com, or call 863-6165, extension 106.)
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