The first of three Friday polls: CNN says Michelle Nunn, Jason Carter leading races

-- Republican David Perdue: 44 percent;

-- Libertarian Amanda Swafford: 5 percent;

For governor:

-- Democrat Jason Carter: 48 percent;

-- Republican Gov. Nathan Deal: 46 percent;

-- Libertarian Andrew Hunt: 6 percent;

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We picked up word that the National Republican Senatorial Committee added another $200,000 to its buy in Atlanta and Macon, bringing its total to $625,000 for the final week. Also, the Michelle Nunn-aligned Emily's List added $200,000 to its buys in Savannah, Macon, Augusta and Albany for this week,, bringing its total to $600,000.

In addition, Americans For Prosperity -- a conservative group funded in part by the Koch Brothers -- is spending $25,000 on phone banking against Nunn.

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The entire interview will be broadcast between 8 and 8:15 a.m. on Sunday.

-- The 5th congressional district of U.S. Rep. John Lewis now has the most registered voters (413,107) of Georgia’s 14 districts. The district is 56 percent African-American.

-- The 14th District in northwest Georgia, represented by U.S. Rep. Tom Graves, has the fewest (316,900) voters. It’s 82 percent white.

-- In the Gwinnett-based 7th District, represented by U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall, the combined black (18 percent), Asian (5 percent), and Hispanic (5 percent) population marks it as a future gelectoral battleground.

Our number-cruncher also produced the chart below, which you need to keep in mind as poll numbers roll through this weekend. In the 2010 general election, Republicans averaged margins of 55 percent. The fact that you see polls showing few Republicans above 50 percent is a measure of how much the landscape has changed in a mere four years:

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Our AJC colleague Nicholas Fouriezos says the ad may be intended to blunt charges from Democratic challenger Chris Irvin that Black has let safety standards slide and favored large agribusinesses.

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He told a gathering of the Georgia School Superintendents Association in Athens yesterday that the panel would be tasked with coming up with a reliable metric to measure teacher performance, partly so the best educators can be compensated so they won't leave their gigs for administrative jobs.

“I know why teachers are worried about that kind of merit-based pay. They don’t want politics injected into the process. And neither do I,” he said. “The real measure is what is the growth of children in that classroom.”

The details will be hashed out by the panel, and Deal said his staff would recruit several from their ranks to serve should he win.

"In this big debate about how we fund public education, one thing we should all keep in mind, is that it doesn't benefit us in the long run to point fingers at each other," he said. "We're all partners in this process."

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But that's what happened when the agency was named the "best in class" in a survey of executives and site selection analysts released this week at the International Economic Development Council Annual Conference.

Gov. Nathan Deal's aides were quick to point out that this was the same agency that Democrat Jason Carter once said was a political office whose workers "set up ribbon cuttings."

Deal spokesman Brian Robinson sent a dispatch from London -- there's an American-style football game over there, it seems -- saying the award demonstrates Carter's "addiction to hollow rhetoric on topics he doesn't understand."

"Just like our three rankings as the best state in the nation in which to do business, this recognition provides yet another example of how Gov. Deal has done everything the right way when it comes to bringing jobs to Georgia," said Robinson.

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Cameras, Shepherd says, can be used for voter intimidation or by someone who has been paid for his vote -- and needs to document the transaction.

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Earlier this week, a grand jury indicted Michael Hubbard, speaker of the Alabama House, on 23 felony ethics counts.

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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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