Well, so much for that coronation. Jeepers Creepers. Give me $10.5 million in
campaign contributions and the endorsement of one of our most popular governors
in recent times and I could have gotten Cameron Charles Yarbrough elected
Instead, with all that money, Gov. Nathan Deal’s endorsement, very high name
recognition, two decades of collecting politics IOUs and an early and sizable
lead in the polls, you barely got a third of the vote in the Republican primary
runoff in Georgia and less than 50 percent in your home county of Hall.
If you want to know how you lost the race, go look in the mirror. Your
opponent, Secretary of State Brian Kemp, didn’t win the runoff as much as you
Much has been made of Kemp’s television ads where he intimidates a little dweeb
who wants to date his daughter by reminding him that he has a gun in his lap. I
was hoping the little dweeb would tell Kemp that he, too, had a gun and was
bad-prone to kneecap trash-talking daddies that got on his nerves.
In fact, Brian Kemp could have read recipes out a cookbook (“Y’all cook up one
of these here taters and whup it to tarnations and then go find you some pappy
ricker and throw it on the tater. Yum! Yum! Them’s some good eatin’.”) and he
still would have waxed you.
Your undoing was your intemperate comments sprinkled with salacious locker room
language to former Republican gubernatorial rival and fourth-place finisher
Clay Tippins (or rather to Tippins’ hidden cellphone) which were absolutely
stupefying. You said you were trying to secure his endorsement. So much for
that good idea. The guy is a Navy Seal, for Pete’s sakes. You just don’t mess
around with Navy Seals. They are different hombres. You are lucky he didn’t rip
out your jugular vein and feed it to you for lunch.
Yours was one of the worst political gaffes I have witnessed in my long life
except for that dodo-head legislator in Woodbine who got duped into yelling
racial epithets, pulling down his red underwear (yuck!) and showing his ample
behind on national television. That one defies all logic.
I am still trying to figure out what compelled you to say the things you didn’t
need to say to a guy you didn’t even know that well. Did you consult with your
crack staff of political consultants prior to the meeting? If so, did you tell
them you were going to discuss having forced the passage of a private school
tax credit bill that you called bad “in a thousand different ways” so that
special interest groups who have nothing but disdain for public education
wouldn’t dump a few million on your rival, former state Sen. Hunter Hill?
If you did consult with your political consultants about the fact you were
going to open your verbal kimono to this guy and they said, “Brilliant idea,
chief. And don’t forget to mention that the whole campaign has been about ‘who
had the biggest gun, who had the biggest truck and who could be the craziest.’
Ha! Ha! Ha! You da man!” you need to ask for a refund.
Obviously, they didn’t pass along my advice that in politics you should never
write what you can say and never say what you can nod and never nod what you
can wink. Had you chosen to wink-wink your way through your meeting with Clay
Tippins, we might be talking about you being our next governor and not our
soon-to-be former lieutenant governor and the consultants might still be gainfully
employed instead of trying to explain to potential clients why they let you
blow an almost unsurmountable lead.
OK, what’s done is done. The good news is it looks like you are going to have
lots of free time on your hands. If you are looking for some fun stuff to do,
don’t hesitate to give me a call. I owe you that much for not telling you
earlier that you were running the wrong kind of campaign. Trying to out-mud
wrestle your right-wing opponents was a big mistake. Talking too much instead
of wink-winking was a fatal mistake.
In the meantime, if you do decide to take some much-needed R&R, I would
strongly suggest you avoid the Georgia Aquarium. That place is full of seals
and we know the kind of damage they can do.
All the best,