Rep. Coan likes Taylor's idea but credits it to Massey in 1997

One of Gwinnett's Republican leaders actually likes an idea from the Democratic candidate for governor.

State Rep. Mike Coan, R-Lawrenceville, said he's all for giving repeat child molesters the death penalty, but he's not giving Mark Taylor, who announced the initiative during a gubernatorial forum last week, any credit.

Coan said he remembers lamenting with then-Rep. Warren Massey in 1997, when Massey's attempt to give the death penalty was stripped out of a bill in the Senate.

Coan pointed out that Taylor was in the Senate at the time.

"He could have done it a few years ago, and we would have been happy to give him credit," Coan said.

"What a silly, silly thing to say," said Taylor campaign spokesman Rick Dent. "Here are the facts. The office of governor is where you get the death penalty for child molesters accomplished. Sonny Perdue had four years, for years to do it and he never even tried. Guess it didn't make Sonny's "Do List." Mark Taylor will get this done his first legislative session and he guarantees it."

Coan tried to help Massey, a Republican from Winder, with the initiative and they talked about it frequently while they carpooled to and from the Capitol, he said.

"I think it's a good idea," he said of the death penalty proposal. "These guys are dangerous. I don't want them around my little girls."

Birthday wishes

Coan got a standing ovation Monday at an event featuring Republican Gov. Sonny Perdue.

Chairman Charles Bannister led the crowd in applause for Coan's 38th birthday.

Bannister said he remembered his former House colleague's birthday because it was the same as Bannister's wife, Glenda.

So happy birthday, both to Gwinnett's first lady and to Coan.

Black in town

Gary Black, the GOP's candidate for agriculture commissioner stopped by the Gwinnett Daily Post on Friday.

But it turns out his visit to Lawrenceville wasn't just for the campaign.

Black's daughter Caroline competed in the Gwinnett County Fair on Friday night.

The proud papa bragged that Caroline, who shows beef heifers, has won the Gwinnett contest twice. Results for this year weren't in by press time.

"This is our priority family event," Black said, although he admitted it does give him an opportunity to meet voters.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young