By Elaine Owen, Editor:
A huge crowd greeted Karen Handel, candidate for U.S. Senate, at the April 9 Republican Women’s meeting.
“It’s good to see you haven’t forgotten me. We’ve been trying to get up here to talk to you and this time it worked out that we could get to Fannin County,” she told the enthusiastic group of men and women.
Wasting no time in telling why she was in Fannin County, Handel told the crowd there were two important considerations in the race for U.S. Senator; (1) who would be the right person to be Georgia’s U.S. Senator, and (2) who is the strongest person to beat Michelle Nunn.
“Let’s face it–we can talk about it all we want, but if don’t win–we’ve got nothing,” she said.
Handel said the candidates are all proclaiming to be “the most conservative, the Constitutional conservative…and now we have the self-proclaimed outsider who thinks that somehow a gal like me isn’t smart enough to handle the complex issues of Washington D.C.”
Pausing a few seconds, Handel continued, “I’ll stack my record of results against anyone else in this race–because that’s what it’s really about. It’s about who can be the most effective conservative in the United States Senate. And there is only ONE person who has a track record of putting conservative principles into practice, including a really tough political environment.”
Mentioning her work with KPMG and the Chamber of Commerce, Handel said she learned that RESULTS MATTER.
“Every day, in all of our jobs, don’t we have to get up and deliver results for our customers our bosses–whatever? The same should apply in elected office, too. Shouldn’t we expect the individuals we elect to deliver results on our behalf in our communities, our country and our state? I believe we should.”
Handel briefly talked about her career and entry into politics.
She said, “I was first elected in 2003 as Chairman of the Fulton County Board of Commissioners, and I quickly learned that I would have to stand up to a lot of people in order to accomplish what I was elected to do. As Commission Chairman, I was able to balance the budget and stand up to the corrupt officials. When I came in we had a $100 million budget deficit. The Democrats controlled that commission and they had a 3 mil property tax increase on the board and could have voted it in that very first meeting. But I was able to show them a different path…I was able to put together a budget that had good, solid parts to it. We did not raise taxes that year or any year that I was chairman. And at the end of my term, we were able to have a balanced budget for the first time in decades.”
Handel told the audience that it was a tremendous privilege when they elected her Georgia’s first Republican Secretary of State. She took their vote of confidence seriously and set about doing what was expected of her, which included reducing the size of the agency by 20 percent and instituting strong ethics policies. She also fought the Obama Justice Department to demand implementation of photo ID and to ensure only U.S. citizens could vote. This Voter ID law became the national model to ensure fair and honest elections.
“You didn’t care about the state having a budget crisis or my agency having a budget crisis–you cared about me getting the job done. And that’s what I did–I delivered results because that’s what you expected me to do. And that’s the kind of results that I will deliver when I go to the United States Senate.”
Going through a list of what is wrong with Washington, Handel said, “We are over taxed; we are over regulated. Our national debt is unsustainable. What is lacking is people who have the guts to do what is necessary to solve our problems.”
Saying she was proud of her reputation and convictions, Handel spoke of her priorities if she is elected to the U.S. Senate.
“I don’t just put my thoughts on a piece of paper and say I’m going to do this. I want you to look at my past experience. Look what I did in Fulton County; look at my record as secretary of state. Ladies and gentlemen,
I do what I say I am going to do. I will fight for our conservative values and our constitutional rights. You can count on me.”
Handel says she will promote job creation; reign in the EPA and other agencies that are stifling job creation.
“We need a simpler, fairer consumption tax system that stops IRS abuse, ends tax giveaways to the politically powerful and lowers rates for individuals. That means we should move toward repealing the 16th Amendment and doing away with the income tax,” she said.
She also said she would work to get out-of-control spending in check; reform the bloated welfare bureaucracy and balance the budget.
A secure nation is also a top priority. Handel said until our borders are secured, our current immigration laws are enforced, and the reliability of our temporary visa programs are established, there can be no immigration reform.
Speaking with passion, Handel said Obamacare is the biggest government intrusion into our lives in American history and must be repealed before it bankrupts our nation.
“I realize we have some issues with our healthcare system and we need changes. But let’s do it in a way that protects your relationship with your doctor and keeps it a free market system; let’s do it in a way where you get to control your health care decisions. We must repeal this tax–and that’s what it is–a tax; before it bankrupts our nation. And I want you to think about this, if the federal government can tell us what our healthcare is, doesn’t it also mean that the federal government can tell us what our healthcare system is not? We need to repeal it–and that’s another reason we need a majority in the United States Senate.”
Handel mentioned that Congressman Tom Price’s bill was a good health care plan that deserves consideration. She emphasized that the United States is a smart country and is capable of figuring out a healthcare system that works. “After all, didn’t we put a man on the moon?” she quipped.
Taking questions from the audience and posing for pictures took another 20 minutes of Handel’s time, but she seemed reluctant to leave this clearly supportive and appreciative group of Republican women and men.
One women in a field of six men might be formidable odds for anyone else; but for Karen Handel, who has faced daunting odds throughout her life, the path to victory is “following through on what you say you’re going to do and delivering results to those who put their trust in you.” Karen Handel. That’s what she’s about.
Early voting begins April 28.