Editorial roundup: Views from around Georgia

Rome News-Tribune: With redistricting does Cobb County become a 14th District powerhouse?

Look for congressional elections to be a bit different under the reapportioned voting district map that will be in effect for the 2022 midterms.

Despite the 14th District remaining solidly Republican even with the addition of cities like Austell and Powder Springs, it certainly will dilute that pool of support.

Up to this point Whitfield and Floyd counties, and in the past Congressional election Paulding County, have been the powerhouses within the 14th District.

The new map dropped solidly red Haralson County as well as the portion of Pickens County. Now that’s countered with what could be described as some deep blue areas of Cobb.

A sampling of the districts in the Cobb area showed a large support for President Joe Biden in the 2020 election. The 14th District overall went for former president Donald Trump with 73.4% of the votes, according to Ballotpedia.

That leaves another 25.3% who voted for Biden with the balance going to Libertarian Jo Jorgensen.

Those votes may not all be from dyed in the wool Democrats, but an infusion of Southwest Cobb Democrats could easily shift the balance of power in a staunchly, nay hardcore, Republican district.

We’re estimating that moves the needle in the district from 75% Republican to somewhere around 68-69% Republican. That’s a lot closer to the middle of the road and the division of Cobb County likely helps out the GOP in that portion of the bluer (and rapidly growing) Metro Atlanta area.

It’s also worth pointing out that Paulding County, which is also growing fairly rapidly appears to be increasingly taking on a reddish-purple tinge. In 2020, 63.9% of the population went for Trump versus 34.8% for Biden. Is that a win for Democrats? Well, not really ... at least not yet.

Overall, the configuration gives Georgia Republicans a 9-5 advantage for the House of Representatives after losing both U.S. Senate seats in 2020 to Democrats.

We did some math, always a worrisome task for writers, but what we came up with is interesting.

We went through 2020 election records and added up the registered voters from precincts we identified in that district and there are approximately 74,000 registered voters in that portion of Cobb County.

For reference there were 60,650 registered voters in Floyd County and 54,749 registered voters in Whitfield County.

Again that’s an estimate, but it looks like that small portion of Cobb may have a large impact on the 14th District.

The addition of that portion of Cobb and removal and Haralson and Pickens also adds to the diversity of the 14th District by increasing the number of people of color within the district by approximately 5%.

What that means for 14th District Rep. Marjorie Greene is tough to say. She’s got several contenders from her party interested in the seat. Now Greene won 74.7% of the vote in the 2020 election, but she was also running unopposed after the Democrat in the race dropped out. Even then, the Democrat pulled over 25% of the vote.

Since then, her antics in Congress have remained a staple on the cable news circuit and occasionally in the headlines as well. She has continued to push her way down the path of extremist political dogma, and that’s been to the detriment of her district.

The first litmus test for how much that matters will be in the Republican primary in March. We won’t be surprised if she wins in the primary and then takes the general election as well. She’s still very popular in large swaths of her district.

The question is whether or not the same issues that turned some Republican voters against Trump will do the same for Greene. The answer to that question will, and how much the area has changed, won’t likely be answered until 2024.

Only time will tell.

Valdosta Daily Times: We are thankful

All of us have so much in our lives for which to be thankful.

As we spend time with our families and friends during the holidays, giving thanks for loved ones, health, prosperity and all of life’s blessings, The Valdosta Daily Times gives thanks for this community.

Bringing us into your homes each day, sharing your stories with us, taking the time to send us letters are some of the ways you bless us as a newspaper.

We love our community and consider it an honor and privilege to be able to serve you.

Everyone will not always agree with everything we cover, the way we cover it or with every position we take on the editorial page. We understand, and respect, people seeing things differently.

We greatly respect the communities we serve and appreciate diverse viewpoints within those communities.

We remain humbled by your continued readership and respect you when you offer us feedback, disagree with something we may have written and, most especially, when you send us your opinions to publish on our editorial pages.

We do not expect readers to always agree with our point of view, and we will always protect your rights to share your points of view.

As much as we would like to be everywhere, all the time and cover every one of your events, we simply cannot be, and that is why we are always excited when you share photos and information with the newspaper so we can share your good news with our readers.

We are thankful for our many advertising partners and highly value our partnership as we work hard to help you market goods and services to our communities.

We are thankful for all the elected and public officials that serve our community. We respect your service and know that it is often a thankless task. We may not always agree with every decision you make and we take our role as a government watchdog very seriously, but as we work to hold you accountable, we will strive to do it in a fair, evenhanded and respectful way.

As we have said in the past, our intention is never to practice “gotcha” journalism, but instead we work each day to fulfill our mission as the Fourth Estate and help to provide a system of checks and balances that improves governance and supports the public.

The Valdosta Daily Times has been serving our communities for more than 150 years and we strongly believe in the future of newspapers as we continue to grow and provide news, information and advertising products in print, online and on mobile devices.

South Georgia, Lowndes County, Valdosta and all of the surrounding communities have been very good to us, and we are truly thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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