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A baby wearing a mask as a preventative measure against a flu
Kin Cheung / AP

While the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak in China a global health emergency, influenza and related illness has sickened and killed far more Georgians than the number of people in the United States affected by coronavirus.

Andrew Harnik / AP

On this morning's edition of Political Rewind, Democratic candidates for president are campaigning in New Hampshire this morning even as they await the delayed results of the Iowa caucuses.

Confusion in reporting from precincts across the Hawk Eye state left the Democratic field without a clear front runner and without winnowing the field.

The turmoil in Iowa could potentially make Georgia’s late March primary even more important in picking a Democratic nominee.

Elijah Nouvelage / AP

Gov. Brian Kemp and state Superintendent Richard Woods are announcing a plan Tuesday to cut five mandatory standardized tests for Georgia public school students, including four in high school. The Republican officials are also trying to cut the length of state tests and evaluate local tests that Georgia’s 181 school districts give to evaluate student progress.

Both Woods and Kemp oppose the current amount of testing, part of a national backlash to a system largely built by Republicans in Georgia.

  • University System Of Georgia Bans Student, Faculty Travel To China
  • Jimmy Carter's Pastor To Oversee Prisoner Reentry Reform For The White House
  • Four Georgia Communitites File Suit Against Airbnb

Stephen Fowler / GPB News

About 10,000 Georgians individually gave nearly $3 million to Democratic and Republican presidential campaigns from October to December last year, giving an updated look at support from across the state ahead of the March 24 presidential preference primary.

According to filings with the Federal Election Commission, more than half of that went to President Donald Trump, who raked in more than $1.6 million from 5,096 Georgians that donated directly to the campaign or to an authorized committee. About a third of the contributions came from Georgians who listed "retired" as their occupation. During 2019, Trump picked up more than $3 million from the state as he looks to win a second term this November.

David Goldman / AP Photo

Researchers at the University of Georgia have secured a $235,000 grant to find out why more people in rural parts of the state are going to jail.

Stephen Fowler / GPB News

Monday on Political Rewind, new fundraising totals for Georgia candidates for the U.S. Senate show Republicans incumbent Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler have wide financial advantages over all Democratic challengers. Loeffler is making good on her promise to open her own checkbook for her race. She has already put $5 million into her campaign account.

But in the two hotly contested metro Atlanta races for the House, it is Democrats who have built big cash advantages.

A Bible on a stand

Many worshipers were nervous Saturday night after a rifle was found in a Peachtree City church chapel, but police said Sunday there was no attack planned.

A woman with mental health issues left the rifle at Holy Trinity Catholic Church on Walt Banks Road.

"A female who suffers from mental illness and diminished mental capacity resides with the owner of the firearm and was responsible for leaving the rifle at the church," police said in a Facebook post.


Georgia lawmakers say a bill that would broaden the number of cases in which criminal records can be sealed could open a larger conversation about the issue.

GPB News

Candidates for a pair of U.S. Senate seats and several competitive U.S. House races raked in millions of dollars in campaign contributions in the last quarter of 2019, setting the stage for an expensive election year with national implications.

Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) has nearly $8 million in his campaign account, reporting more than $1.8 million in receipts on his most recent federal filing. On the Democratic side of the race, investigative filmmaker Jon Ossoff paced his rivals with a $1 million fundraising haul, starting 2020 with $1.5 million in the bank. 

Emilia Brock/GPB

Millions of NPR listeners trust Steve Inskeep to help them make sense of the news. The Morning Edition anchor manages to sound simultaneously knowledgeable about the facts and curious about the human side of stories — attributes of an incisive interviewer and author.  

Inskeep’s third book, Imperfect Union: How Jessie and John Frémont Mapped the West, Invented Celebrity, and Helped Cause the Civil War, follows an ambitious couple through some decisive events in American history. On Second Thought host Virginia Prescott spoke with Inskeep about the book onstage at The Carter Presidential Library at an event for A Cappella books.

  • Delta Temporarily Suspends All Flights From U.S. To China
  • Gov. Kemp Introduces New Legislation To Tackle Gangs
  • Anne Cox Chambers Dies At Age 100

Andre M / Wikimedia Commons

Georgia is one of four states without a hate crime law. In 2000, state legislators passed a law forbidding acts targeting victims due to "bias or prejudice," but the state Supreme Court struck it down four years later for being too vague.

Repeated efforts to bring a new hate crime law since have failed. Last year, a bill brought by Chuck Efstration, a Republican Representative from Dacula, passed in the Georgia House. It's now up for debate in the state Senate.

Georgia is one of four states that does not have a law specifying penalties for hate crimes. Last year, State Representative Chuck Efstration, a Republican from Dacula, introduced a new hate crimes bill. It passed in the Georgia House last March and, in 2020, it is up for debate in the state’s Senate. We spoke with a reporter from ProPublica, Rachel Glickhouse, who worked on the publication’s “Documenting Hate” series, to learn more about how these laws work and what this bill, if passed, could mean for Georgia’s legal landscape. 

Dey Street Books

Marriage can be tricky. That’s why Joseph “Rev Run” and Justine Simmons wrote a book about their successful union.

The story begins in New York, where the couple met. That was at a Long Island roller skate rink in 1982. Joseph Simmons was then known as DJ Run — of the famed “new school” rap group, Run D.M.C.

Delta plane
Delta Airlines

Delta Airlines is suspending all flights from the U.S. to China until April 30.

The Atlanta-based company made the decision due to ongoing concerns about the coronavirus.

Liz Fabian

When Macon-Bibb County voters go the polls this spring, they’ll use new voting equipment and might even vote in a new location.

Elections supervisor Jeanetta Watson said nearly 115,000 people are now registered to vote.

“That’s a historical high for Bibb County,” Watson said Thursday. It suggests that nearly every person old enough to vote in Bibb County is registered.

The spike comes through automatic registration at the Department of Drivers Services and the politically active climate, she said.

Nolan Helmly / Sarah Rose / GPB News

The Center for Puppetry Arts in downtown Atlanta is hosting a special exhibit dedicated to Jim Henson’s cult classic film The Dark Crystal through June of this year.

The exhibit features props, puppets, and notes from the film – as well as an in-depth walkthrough of the history of its production and the fan culture it inspired. While the film wasn’t necessarily a blockbuster hit during its time, it went on to build a cult following that would lead to the creation of books, comics, conventions, fan communities, and eventually a Netflix prequel series, The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, that premiered last year.

David Goldman / AP

Delta Air Lines plans to launch a new uniform program for its flight attendants and some airport customer service agents after complaints that uniforms that employees are required to wear are causing serious medical problems.

The Atlanta-based airline announced the new program Wednesday. The director of Delta's New Uniform Program calls it “a big decision,” but says “we side with our people, and we are making a change.”

Rama / Wikimedia

On Friday's Political Rewind, House Speaker David Ralston has ended speculation that the legislature could pass a bill forcing primary elections for both Georgia U.S. Senate seats this year. The proposed measure appeared to be designed to offer GOP Senate candidate Doug Collins a leg up in his battle with Sen. Kelly Loeffler.

It could have put legislators on a collision course with Gov. Brian Kemp, who favors an election that puts candidates of both parties on a special election ballot in November.

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger wants to postpone any changes to a so-called "jungle primary" rule until after this November's special election, avoiding a May primary contest between appointed Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) and Congressman Doug Collins (R-Gainesville) while making other changes the chief elections official desires.

In a statement, Raffensperger agreed with earlier comments House Speaker David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) made about eliminating the election rule that sees all candidates, regardless of party, on the same ballot.

In Macon, insights from the annual day of community conversations are in, and in talking to each other, people in Macon gave voice to both optimism as well as concern.

According to the results in the most recent On The Table event,  three quarters of the people who chose to eat lunch together around town, and have difficult conversations, on one day last October said they felt like Macon as a city was on the right track and getting better. 

GPB Evening Headlines For Jan. 30, 2020

Jan 30, 2020

  • Raphael Warnock Enters Special Senate Election
  • After Complaints, Delta To Introduce New Uniforms
  • New Georgia Voting Machines Get Next Test In Special Election

Courtesy of Greensboro News and Record

Saturday, Feb. 1, marks the 60th anniversary of a watershed moment in the civil rights movement. 

The scene took place at a Woolworth's lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina.  The players were four black college students who decided to go into the store, sit at the counter and refuse to move until they were served.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Officials from Savannah and Atlanta are heading to Super Bowl LIV in Miami this weekend — to help with security.


Four of the major league professional sports teams based in Atlanta are teaming up to push for legalization of some forms of sports betting in Georgia.

The Georgia Professional Sports Alliance, a conglomerate of the Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Falcons, Atlanta Hawks and Atlanta United voiced support for mobile and online wagering in a letter published just before the start of the new legislative session in the Georgia General Assembly.

David Goldman / AP

Thursday on Political Rewind, Rev. Raphael Warnock, the pastor of historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, announced he is a candidate for Sen. Kelly Loeffler’s U.S. Senate seat.

Georgia Democrats have urged Warnock to enter the race because they see him as a unifying candidate the party can rally around.

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

The senior pastor of Martin Luther King Jr.’s church in Atlanta on Thursday entered the race for a U.S. Senate special election, hoping to capitalize on a politically and demographically shifting Georgia and unite Democrats heading into November.  

The Rev. Raphael Warnock released a campaign video that positions him as perennially preparing to be ready for what was next, whether it was family, his education or his work at Ebenezer Baptist Church. 

GA Department of Corrections

A Georgia man convicted of killing his ex-wife and her boyfriend more than two decades ago was put to death Wednesday evening, becoming the state’s first inmate to be executed this year.

Donnie Cleveland Lance, 66, received a lethal injection at the state prison in Jackson. His time of death was 9:05 p.m., Warden Benjamin Ford told witnesses.

Lance said nothing when he was given a chance to make a final statement and declined to have a chaplain say a prayer. Strapped to a gurney, he lay mostly still but wiggled his feet.

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

Elections officials in three southwest Georgia counties reported no issues with the state’s new touchscreen ballot-marking device system during early voting, but poll watchers and staff noted issues with several parts of the process on Election Day.

The $104 million BMD system includes a poll pad that checks voters in, a touchscreen computer to make selections, a printer that creates a paper ballot with a text summary of choices plus a QR code and a scanner that tabulates votes and stores the paper.