Chamber, Georgia Power spend big to protect leaders Tuesday

The Georgia Chamber and its allies are spending big to protect House and Senate leaders and defeat a metro Atlanta legislator who voted against gas and hotel tax hikes for transportation in 2015.

Some Republicans who backed the transportation measure knew they’d likely catch flak from constituents for voting to raises taxes, and they are now facing primary opponents Tuesday who are noting that vote as a reason they should be ousted.

The Georgia Chamber and the Georgia Coalition for Job Creation, whose donors tend to overlap, have combined to spend about $300,000 in recent weeks, more than half for mailings in support of House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, House Majority Leader Jon Burns, R-Newington, Senate Economic Development Chairman Brandon Beach, R-Alpharetta and other legislative leaders with primaries Tuesday.

The coalition has sent out mailings for Canton business owner Kevin Moore, who’s running against Rep. Scot Turner, R-Holly Springs, who voted against the transportation tax hike in 2015.

In 2014, the Georgia Coalition for Job Creation was credited with helping to oust Rep. Charles Gregory, R-Kennesaw, and Rep. Sam Moore, R-Ball Ground, two Republicans who ran afoul of the House leadership.

Since the 2014 primaries, it has reported raising about $300,000, including $150,000 from Georgia Power.

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