At RedState: Chris Christie greeted with a slam from a Georgia gun group

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will be the first GOP presidential candidate to speak during this morning's session of the RedState Gathering in Atlanta. Gun enthusiasts are waiting for him.

Specifically, Georgia Gun Owners, a group that thinks the National Rifle Association is squishy on the Second Amendment, is greeting Christie with this flyer:

As you can see, one leg of the attack includes a Christie quote declaring his opposition to repeal of an assault weapon ban in New Jersey. It's from 1993, before Christie was even a member of that state's legislature.

In case you were wondering, no firearms will be allowed on the premises during the RedState Gathering.

Georgia Gun Owners is among the firearm groups questioning why the cattle-call that's attracting 10 Republican presidential candidates is banning weapons. Hotel Intercontinental's security is asking attendees to check their firearm on arrival in safety boxes available at the front desk.

Here's the hotel's response:

In accordance with current law, as a private property, we have the right to prohibit firearms on our premises.  This policy has been in place and is not reflective of your group, or any groups doing business here at the hotel.

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Want to watch the RedState Gathering as it's happening? Click here for the livestream.

In case you missed it -- and how could you? -- here's one of our number's lede take on last night's presidential debate from Cleveland:

He trampled over the moderators, Mexicans, actress Rosie O’Donnell and the Republican Party itself.

The first presidential debate Thursday night was The Donald Trump Show, and the billionaire is showing no signs of relinquishing the spotlight.

In front of Republican Party leaders, in the city where the party’s nominee will be selected in one year, Trump refused to rule out running as a third-party candidate if he does not win the nomination.

He raised his hand and shrugged as the boos rained down.

“I cannot say,” Trump said, raising the prospect of a Ross Perot-like bid Republicans fear will vault a Democrat into the White House.

Trump proclaimed that he enjoyed the experience: "I really had a good time. I thought it was an amazing debate."

What he did not enjoy was the moderators' questioning, particularly Fox News host Megyn Kelly's barb about Trump's past demeaning comments toward women:

"I thought Megyn behaved very badly, personally. ... I thought it was an unfair question. They didn’t ask those questions of the other guys."

The other candidates in the spin room, naturally, kept getting asked about Trump. Here's neurosurgeon Ben Carson's take:

"He was pretty subdued. [laughs] Except at the end when he thought Huckabee was talking about him he was starting to get a little riled up and then it was: ‘Oh, gosh, it’s not me.’"

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Georgia Republicans have been among the most outspoken opponents to an extension of the landmark Voting Rights Act, arguing that the legislation has outlived its usefulness.

When the Supreme Court in 2013 wiped out a key section of the Voting Rights Act that empowered the federal government to block discriminatory voting laws, the Georgia GOP trumpeted the ruling as a sign of progress.

Which made it all the more interesting Thursday when the state Republican Party sent a press release celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, with a statement from Leo Smith, the party's minority engagement director. Said Smith:

"Much has changed since the Civil Rights Movement and the passage of the Voting Rights Act but we still have work to do. Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction and we must continue to fight on the local, state, and federal level to guarantee liberty and opportunity for generations to come."

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We haven't had time to peruse it, but the Brookhaven Post has posted on YouTube the whole of last night's debate between Democrat Taylor Bennett and Republican Max Davis for the special election runoff for House District 80.

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The House District 80 race apparently has turned into a homeowners versus renters contest. Here's a portion of Democrat Taylor Bennett's op-ed piece in the Brookhaven Post:

Former Mayor J. Max Davis has pledged to cap property taxes and has taken me to task as a renter for doing less than my share. He decries renters like myself for having “no skin in the game”. This claim ignores the reality of how property taxes work, and also is an affront to the thousands hard working renters in our district. Property owners who rent to millennials and working families and seniors receive the same tax bills, but they pass the costs of property taxes along to their tenants.

We fund the same schools, police and fire, water and sewer and community needs that homeowners do. We may need to call the landlord to fix a leak or replace a broken window; but we’ve paid for the service, just as we paid for the trash pickup that stops on the former mayor’s street. Renters, homeowners and small businesses are all critical parts of our local economy. To dismiss individuals who don’t own a home as somehow incapable of understanding the issues facing our district and unable to contribute to our political process and democracy is incorrect. Anyone who asserts otherwise doesn’t understand taxes and doesn’t understand shared responsibility.

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About the Author

Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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