David Cooper feels he can reach across party lines and defeat Doug Collins

Election 2018, News, Politics

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – David Cooper will face off against Josh McCall for Georgia’s 9th congressional district seat Democratic nomination. The winner of the May General Primary will then run against Republican incumbent Congressman Doug Collins in the November General Election.

Collins has held the Georgia 9th Congressional District seat since 2013.

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David Cooper seeks Democratic nomination in May General Primary.

Cooper stopped by the Fannin County Democratic meeting to share with Fannin County residents why he feels that he is the best man for the job.

“I am soldier. I have served in the forces that have guarded this country and our way of life, and I am prepared to serve again,” Cooper introduced himself.

Holding a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in public administration, Cooper has also had a career working various levels of government and is currently retired from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). During his employment with the EPA, Cooper worked in hazardous waste clean up and also worked in commercializing green options, such as solar, wind, and geothermal.

Because of his background, Cooper feels that he can reach a wide audience: “I speak the language of patriotism and sacrifice. I speak the language of compassion and selfless service. I speak the language of public participation, cost effective regulation and legislation.”

“It is not about giving a speech. It’s not about making a list of here’s my issues, and wouldn’t it be cool if we could do these things. That is what every politician is taught to do,” Cooper said, explaining he wants to see real accomplishments.

“I am an unconventional candidate, and I will be running an unconventional campaign,” Cooper noted, adding that unlike his opponent, McCall, he would in fact seek to sway Republican voters. “I have the skills and experience to have those conversations.”

Cooper is convinced that there is no such thing as a single-issue voter and is confident that he can find common ground and common values among all residents of Georgia’s 9th District.

Cooper summarized his beliefs and his platform into three key elements, with the first being a need to “save democracy”. He feels this can be accomplished by stopping fake news, ensuring clean elections, and implementing term limits.

His second stance is to “protect what we hold dear.” Cooper cited a few areas that deserve our attention and care, with these being social security, medicare, women’s rights, the environment, veterans, and small businesses.

Cooper labeled his final stance as “progress for the future.” He would like to see steps made toward universal health care, common sense gun control, clean energy, fair taxes and affordable education.

“Not free education,” Cooper pointed out, “until we can get healthcare for everybody, don’t talk to me about free education.”

Locally, Cooper would like to work to support small businesses, citing that they are uniquely numerous in our area due to the tourism industry. He feels that one way to promote this would be to “energize the Small Business Administration to do more to support and provide more outreach.”

“That’s how we keep the Georgia 9th vibrant, keep these small businesses going,” Cooper added.

“Collins should not be making rules for anyone,” Cooper spoke of his Republican opponent. “His loyalties are not with the people.”

In the General Primary, Cooper said the focus should not be about himself running against McCall, but instead he advised the crowd, “You need to pick the person who can beat Doug Collins and who has a plan.”

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

Josh McCall prepares to face Doug Collins in upcoming election

Election 2018, News, Politics

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – Josh McCall hopes to receive the Democratic nomination in the race for Georgia’s 9th congressional district seat.

This seat is currently held by incumbent Congressman Doug Collins. Collins has been Georgia’s 9th District representative since 2013.

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Josh McCall seeks Democratic nomination in May General Primary.

McCall has been traveling the district during his campaign, and made a stop at the Fannin County Democratic meeting to discuss with residents why he should represent our district.

Tired of hearing negativity in politics and disagreeing with many of today’s political moves, McCall stated that it had gotten to the point where he dreaded looking at his phone to get the latest news.

“Inevitably, as though it is some kind of force of fate, I do open my phone because I do care about my country and I want to know what’s happening,” McCall added.

Criticizing the Republicans, McCall referred to the party’s Debt Clock: “because everything that goes into feeding the poor people, those Republicans are putting it on the clock.”

“They just passed a bill handing over the fortunes of our children that was supposed to go into green infrastructure and the educational facilities of tomorrow,” McCall spoke of the party’s hypocrisy, “and it went into the pockets of billionaires.”

McCall added, “Let me tell you the red letters of our (Democrats) debt clock. They are written in the blood of students who died at Parkland. They’re written in the blood of the children who died daily from gun violence in this nation, which is breaking out like an epidemic.”

According to McCall Republicans used to care about urgent matters such as the National Debt and what is being left to the nation’s children, but their concerns have since shifted.

McCall wants to see focus put on healthcare and the costs related to this field, stating, “Those are the threats that are really facing us. You deserve life and you deserve health.”

“It is my fundamental belief that nobody should die because they are poor, and that nobody should be poor because they are dying,” McCall reiterated his passion to see meaningful change.

On national matters, McCall would like to see corporations “put on check” for environmental damage, and for lobbyists and organizations to have less of a hold on our government, citing that NRA (National Rifle Association) money is what stops real change to gun control.

“We are in too many nations right,” McCall said stating that we should pull forces out and invest at home,”There is not a single nation with a possible exception of Korea, that is any better off than it was before we invaded it.”

McCall would like to form a Public Service Coalition to serve at home and focus on social needs. The Civil Conservation Corp. could provide services such as taking care of the elderly in their homes and aid in environmental protection and clean up in exchange for scholarships to colleges.

For a two year term, McCall suggests, participants could receive a two-year technical degree scholarship, and for a four-year term, participants could receive a scholarship for a four year Bachelor’s Degree.

McCall switched gears to speak of his stance on the Second Amendment, “I firmly believe in the Second Amendment. The problem is the NRA does not. They only believe in that second part that makes them money.”

Citing that no one is safe in any public space in today’s climate, McCall emphasized that there is need for a well regulated militia.

“If they are law abiding citizens of sound mind, I want them to have that bolt action rifle. Their hunting rifle,” McCall stated, but also explained that there needs to be meaningful change.

One simple solution that he felt could have a lasting impact would be to have a 10 bullet limit on magazines, and outlaw removable clips. Other solutions would be to have gun owners secure weapons in their homes to keep them away from children. McCall stated that Georgia was number one in the nation for toddlers to die of gun related deaths.

“I don’t believe in confiscation,” McCall made very clear if new reform were to pass.

Locally McCall would like to focus on infrastructure in the 9th District, and have improvements to infrastructure done by people trained in our area.
If McCall were to receive the Democratic nomination, he spoke of where he differs from his Republican opponent Doug Collins.

“I believe that Doug Collins is most vulnerable in his complacency,” McCall stated and added that this election year Collins cannot ignore the Democratic party.

“Compassion and cooperation are the center pieces of my campaign,” McCall said and then added, “That is where he is vulnerable, he has not a compassionate or cooperative bone in his body, and that is our strength.”

McCall concluded by saying, “Am I my brother’s keeper? My answer to that is a resounding yes. This race is truly not about me. I have faith in the people of the 9th District.”

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

NRA endorses David Shafer

Election 2018, Politics

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The National Rifle Association (NRA) continues to unveil their endorsements for the upcoming May General Primary, and the latest announcement revealed their pick for the next Georgia Lieutenant Governor, Senator David Shafer.

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Georgia State Senator David Shafer.

Shafer currently serves as a State Senator of the Georgia State Senate, a position he has held since first being elected in 2002. Shafer has also held the title of President Pro Tempore. He has had this designation since 2013 when his fellow Senators unanimously elected him to this position.

Shafer received a letter from the Chairman of the NRA’s Political Victory Fund Chris Cox. In this letter Cox noted Shafer’s work in Georgia in regards to protecting Second Amendment rights: “Nearly every Second Amendment bill in the last 16 years has had your name attached to it.”

“David Shafer is a voice for freedom and faithful friend to Georgia’s law abiding gun owners,” Cox said explaining the decision made by the NRA, “This endorsement is a reflection of his unwavering support for the Second Amendment.”

Shafer received the Defender of Freedom award from the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action in 2013.

This award came after Shafer’s key role in passing Senate Bill 101 by an overwhelming majority in the Georgia Senate.

The bill essentially made what the NRA deemed as “several important changes to Georgia firearms laws”. Among these changes were increasing reciprocity for out-of-state concealed carry permit holders and preempting a ban on firearms in public housing giving residents the ability to defend themselves regardless of their economic stature.

Shafer has long held an A+ rating with the NRA Political Victory Fund and the NRA says of Shafer that he is “one of the nation’s strongest champions of the Second Amendment.”

“The framers of the Constitution intended for us to be able to defend ourselves,” Shafer said. “I am proud of my record fighting for the Second Amendment rights of every law abiding Georgian.”

The NRA’s endorsement is sure to pull some weight in the upcoming May General Primary. There are currently more than 100,000 active members of the NRA in the state of Georgia.

The May General Primary is scheduled to take place May 22, 2018. Voter registration deadline for this General Primary is April 23.

 

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

Casey Cagle receives NRA endorsement

Election 2018, Featured, News, Politics

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The National Rifle Association (NRA) announces its pick for Georgia’s next Governor, and released that the association would officially be backing Casey Cagle. Not all Republican candidates are happy with the NRA’s decision.

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Casey Cagle receives NRA endorsement.

With more than 100,000 active members in the state of Georgia, the NRA’s endorsement is sure to pull some weight in the upcoming May General Primary.

Earning an A+ rating from the NRA for each year that he has served in office, this is not the first time that Cagle has been endorsed by the organization.

“Gun ownership is a right that Georgians take seriously, and the NRA endorsement is the gold standard in our state,” Cagle said explaining his enthusiasm for receiving this endorsement. “I’m an avid outdoorsman, and I taught all three of my boys how to hunt, shoot and respect firearms. That’s an American legacy that I want to see handed down to my grandchildren and to the generations that follow them.”

“I’m honored and excited to have the NRA’s support because its cause is one that I share and that I have fought for,” Cagle continued. “I’m a lifetime member of the NRA, and I’m proud of my unwavering record for the Second Amendment. Like the NRA, I believe the framers of the Constitution meant what they said when they wrote that the right to bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Having already received backing from Educators First and the Georgia Realtors, the NRA endorsement makes a third announcement of support for Cagle this week.

The NRA endorsement comes on the heels of Secretary of State of the U.S. State of Georgia and Republican Governor hopeful Brian Kemp sending an email to a top NRA lobbyist, Christopher Cox, concerning Cagle’s true allegiance to the organization.

In regards to Cagle’s stance on Delta Airlines and recent Georgia legislation passed, Kemp stated in the email, “The NRA is getting played.”

Kemp added, “As those of us involved in Georgia politics like to say…..you’ve been “Casey Cagled”.”

Brian Kemp shared his thoughts with FetchYourNews on the recent announcement from the NRA: “The 2nd Amendment is not a talking point to me. It’s a way of life. I shoot, hunt, and carry – because we have the right to protect ourselves and defend our families from harm. As governor, I won’t compromise or play games for political gain.”

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

Violent gang member apprehended in Fannin County

Featured, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga.-A police chase ended with the detainment of the suspect involved. The Fannin County Sheriff’s Office made the arrest after becoming involved in the chase shortly after midnight on Wednesday, Jan. 10.

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Edmundo Ramirez was apprehended after a police chase in Fannin County.

Fannin County Sheriff Deputy Jared Wood noticed a green Nissan Pathfinder traveling South on Ga 2 with a brake light out and failing to maintain its lane. Initially the Pathfinder pulled over, coming to a stop, when Wood signaled for the driver to do so.

After pulling over the vehicle then sped off to avoid the traffic stop. Several illegal traffic maneuvers later, the Pathfinder turned on to Old Hwy. 76 and proceeded towards downtown Blue Ridge.

Blue Ridge City Police Department was made aware of the situation and attempted to deploy spike strips at the Orvin Lance Connector and Old Hwy. 76.

The driver, identified as Edmundo Ramirez, eluded this attempt and continued closer to the downtown area. After turning off of East First Street, the Pathfinder was then observed running the stop sign at the intersection of East Main Street and Mountain Street.

Ramirez continued traveling down East Main Street going the wrong way on a One Way designated section and maintaining a speed of approximately 50-55 m.p.h.

After reaching the end of East Main Street, the vehicle turned right onto Old Hwy. 76 in the direction of Ga 2 once again. Ramirez lost control of the Pathfinder before reaching Ga 2, and struck a natural rock formation, leading to a crash that would disable the vehicle in front of Bill Holt Chevrolet.

Upon wrecking the vehicle Ramirez attempted to flee, but quickly surrendered when Deputy Wood, conducting the scene as a felony traffic stop, pulled his handgun and demanded the suspect to halt. Ramirez then put his hands in the air and lay face down on the ground.

Edmundo Ramirez, age 25 of Buford, Ga., was arrested and charged with multiple traffic misdemeanors. These misdemeanors include reckless driving, driving on the wrong side of the road, failure to stop at a stop sign, failure to obey traffic devices or police, failure to wear a seat belt, and failure to maintain lane.

Along with these traffic misdemeanors, Ramirez is being charged with driving on a suspended or revoked license and felony fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer.

Ramirez, who has a criminal history throughout the state of Georgia, was detained for similar charges in Buford. He currently has an outstanding criminal warrant in Hall County.

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A list of distinctive markings from Ramirez’s booking sheet.

As indicated by the tattoos covering his body, Ramirez also has confirmed ties with the violent street and prison gang, the Barrio Aztecas.

The Barrio Aztecas formed in the late 1980s in El Paso, Texas, and quickly grew to become an international crime group with strong ties to the Juarez Cartel in Mexico. Known for drug trafficking and contract killing, the Barrio Aztecas are considered one of the most dangerous gangs in America.

Barrio Azteca Captain Eduardo Ravelo is currently on the the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitive list.

Fannin County Sheriff Dane Kirby was unable to comment on the detainee’s affiliations.

A source with the Appalachian Drug Task Force spoke with FetchYourNews about gang related activity in North Georgia.

“North Georgia, I can not confirm,” the source said speaking about Barrio Azteca infiltration in our area, “Atlanta, yes. There is a bit of every gang there.”

The source did confirm that there is known drug trafficking related to cartel activity in North Georgia, and added about why Ramirez might have been in Fannin County, “If he doesn’t live there, I would say it is likely that he was passing through for a specific reason.”

Ramirez made an initial appearance in court on Wednesday, Jan. 10. Magistrate Judge Brian Jones set bond at $12,500 for the charges in Fannin County.

Ramirez is currently being held at the Fannin County Jail. A hold has been placed on the detainee for transfer to Hall County, Georgia where Ramirez has an outstanding criminal warrant.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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JQC Dismisses all Claims against Judge Brenda Weaver

Featured, News

“No evidence has been presented to show any violation of code of Judicial Ethics by Judge Weaver. Instead, the evidence appears to show a personal dislike of the Judge.”

Last week the Georgia Judicial Qualification Commission dismissed the complaint against Appalachian Judicial District Chief Superior Court Judge Brenda Weaver. 

Judge Brenda Weaver

“The complaint of Thomason, Stookey, Doss and the GCSPJ are without any basis in law or fact. The complaints are nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to enlist the JQC in their fixation upon harming Judge Weaver. The JQC will have no further part in it. All complaints are hereby dismissed.”

The complaint was submitted to the JQC by Mark Thomason, former publisher of the Fannin Focus, his attorney Russell Stookey and Fannin County Attorney Lynn Doss.

In the JQC conclusions they addressed the Georgia Chapters Society of Professionals Journalist complaint that Weaver mounted an attack on freedom of the press.

“Calling oneself a “journalist” and “reporter” should not be a cover for pursuing personal vendettas.”

Stookey and Thomason with the assistance of Fannin County Attorney Lynn Doss raised a complaint to the FBI to initiate an investigation.   

JQC, “The FBI investigated the allegations raised by Stookey and Thomason but found no wrongdoing.”

On June 15th Atlanta Attorney Gerry Weber, representing Russell Stookey and Mark Thomason, sent a demand letter and Ante Litem Notice to Judge Brenda Weaver, District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee and Pickens County Board of Commissioners.

Part of Weber’s summary of claim, “This case has already garnered national attention. It involves breathtaking abuse of power by a Judge, prosecutor, and law enforcement who manipulated the criminal justice system to wage a personal vendetta against a local newspaper publisher and his attorney.”

Weber’s claim for damages conclusion, “Further accounting for damages stemming from the emotional distress in false arrest and malicious prosecution and for the punitive damages due to egregiousness of the actions leading to the arrests, Stookey’s and Thomason’s damages exceed 1,000,000.”

How far will this case go considering the FBI and JQC have closed their investigation both dismissing the possible charge of wrongdoing.

Click to read “Fannin Focus Publisher Mark Thomason Arrested, Journalist or Vendetta?

 

Georgia Speaker of The House David Ralston Talks About Rural Georgia Issues, Health Care…

Featured, Politics

Our interview Friday with Speaker of The House David Ralston focused on rural Georgia. Ralston went into detail about the new Rural Georgia Economic Council. This council will be co-chaired by (R) Terry England from Auburn, (R) Jay Powell from Camilla and Vice Chair (R) Sam Watson from Moultry. The council will be holding meetings across Georgia to hear from elected officials, local businesses and citizens about how they feel rural Georgia economy can best be improved. Ralston said jokingly that he better not find out that one meeting took place in Atlanta.

Health care is a major concern in rural Georgia. Several hospitals have closed in rural Georgia areas including one in Ralston’s district in North Georgia. We spoke to Ralston abut one possible solution to meet rural Georgia health care needs. Ralston used the example of the first stand alone emergency room, opened by Piedmont Mountainside Hospital in Gilmer county. In this interview we asked Ralston if Gilmer county still had the possibility of having a full hospital.

Ralston told us that sometime within the next month Governor Nathan Deal would be visiting Gilmer county’s Fire Station 1 to sign the fire fighter’s workmen’s compensation bill.  We asked Ralston the difference in this years campus carry bill opposed to last year’s bill which Governor Deal vetoed. Not being able to speak for the Governor, Ralston said he felt they made the changes necessary to get Deal to sign the bill. We also discussed the pay raises agreed upon in the 2017 legislative session for teachers, state law enforcement, and D.F.C.S workers.  

Our final question in our interview friday: Speaker Ralston do you see the governor’s mansion in your future?

National Court Appointed Special Advocate of the Year – Superior Court Judge John Worcester

Community, Featured

Appalachian Judicial Circuit Superior Court Judge John Worcester  has been named the National CASA Judge of the year. More than seven hundred thousand children experience abuse and neglect each year. Judge Worcester talks about his time as Chief Juvenile Court Judge and his appointment to Superior Court Judge.

 

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