Prime time for politics: Democratic debates this week; Rome commission qualifying in August; even local 2020 campaigns simmering at GOP rally.

Prime time for politics: Democratic debates this week; Rome commission qualifying in August; even local 2020 campaigns simmering at GOP rally.

Rome voters face a busy ballot in November — and that’s going to be followed by the presidential primary in March, state and local primary in May, possible runoff elections and the November 2020 general election.


This week and August are going to be critical for the next two election cycles as candidates for municipal offices qualify, Democratic presidential candidates are featured in another two nights of early debates and then local Republicans rally in what could be a display of who’s in and who’s not for the 2020 county and legislative races.

In chronological order:

July 30, 31: Round two of the Democratic presidential candidate debates: Another two-night debate is set for this Tuesday and Wednesday beginning at 8 p.m. Ten different Democrats will appear each night in a broadcast live from Detroit’s Fox Theatre. The format is expected to be similar to the June debates.

  • Today’s Druck Report features an in-depth look at 20plus Democrats vs. a Trump incumbency only he can derail. Dr. Frank Stephenson of Berry College breaks down the 2020 presidential sweepstakes. This podcast will get your ready for Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s debates. Click here

Aug. 10: The Floyd County Republican Party’s annual Tillman Hangar Rally. Set for 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., the event is billed as “the largest annual Republican rally in North Georgia.” It will feature speakers from local, state and federal officials. The Trump Bus is scheduled to stop by as well. What to watch for: Clues about who is and isn’t running in 2020, including incumbents and challengers; we’re hearing a surprise or two already. The schedule: Doors open at 10 a.m. with a catered barbecue lunch available for purchase starting at 10:30 a.m. The event begins at 11. Admission is free.Tables will be available for conservative organizations for a donation.

Aug. 19-23. Qualifying for six openings on the Rome City Commission. Six of nine seats are on the ballot, three from Ward 1 and three from Ward 3. Qualifying is daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 19-22 and until 4:30 p.m. on Aug. 23 at City Hall. Those seats up for election: Ward 1 incumbents Bill Irmscher, Milton Slack and Sundai Stevenson. Ward 3 incumbents Bill Collins, Craig McDaniel and Evie McNiece. The top three vote-getters in each ward will get the seats.

  • About this election: Some remember when a recent election was canceled as just enough candidates qualified to fill the seats on the City Commission. We won’t have that problem this year even if any incumbents chose to retire. The past two years have been a bit rocky for a commission that tries to present itself as unified (it isn’t; check that recent mayor vote). Some of the issues: Downtown in general, including parking, smoking and so-so reaction to events designed to attract people to Broad Street; the vote to finance six indoor courts at the tennis center at more than $4 million; approval of a fourth tax allocation district for the city, this one for the East Bend development expected to rise at the old Kmart site; economic development overall, from the chamber decision to relatively no action on several SPLOST-fund inducements to attract new industry.
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