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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: ‘Photo finish’ predicted in Georgia governor’s race

Gov. Nathan Deal

Gov. Nathan Deal

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Sen. Jason Carter

A week after a poll predicted that Gov. Nathan Deal would survive the GOP primary this May, another poll shows a challenge in the November general election against Democratic Sen. Jason Carter, the grandson of President Jimmy Carter.

The poll of 575 active Georgia voters conducted Sunday shows that Deal leads Carter 43 percent to 39 percent, but the margin of the lead matches the margin of error in the race. About 18 percent of voters remain undecided in the poll, conducted by Landmark Communications and Rosetta Stone Communications.

Deal has the lead among men, 48 percent to 38 percent, while Carter holds a 3 percent advantage among women, 41 percent to 38 percent. More women remain undecided (21 percent), while 14 percent of men haven’t chosen their candidate.

“Independent voters support Gov. Deal by a four-to-three margin,” said Mark Rountree, president of Duluth-based Landmark Communications. “With Deal at 41 percent, Carter at 32 percent among Independent voters, there is still a significant number of Independents who have yet to make up their mind.”

This week, a trial involving accusations that Deal interfered in an ethics investigation into his campaign is underway in Atlanta, which Democrats hope will change the outcome in November, but the poll experts weren’t sure.

“Gov. Deal still enjoys a small lead among all age groups despite a non-stop barrage of bad press,” said John Garst, president of Rosetta Stone Communications. “The governor trails Senator Jason Carter with female voters. I predict a photo finish in November.”

Kingston campaign events Saturday

Senate candidate Jack Kingston has two events planned in Gwinnett this weekend.

The Savannah congressman will address the Gwinnett GOP breakfast at 8:30 a.m. at 550 Trackside in Lawrenceville.

Later that morning, his campaign will host the first of several volunteer victory parties at his campaign headquarters in Duluth, as well as in Savannah.

One of three congressmen vying for the GOP nomination for the open U.S. Senate seat this year, Kingston is hosting the parties from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday until the May 20 primary But while you party, leaders plan to put you to work making phone calls to voters.

“Phones will be provided,” a press release said, noting that a light lunch will also be served for volunteers.

The campaign headquarters is located at 3360 Satellite Boulevard in Duluth.

For more information and to RSVP, please contact anna@jackkingston.org, or give us a call at 470-545-8206.

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

Camie Young can be reached via email at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.

For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/politics.