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Contributor Perspective: This Week's Issues from Georgia's Political Landscape

Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Nathan Deal’s Finances

Nathan Deal once again finds himself in the media’s cross hairs over financial issues. Today’s frenzy is over the revelation that Deal’s son-in-law’s recent bankruptcy is actually the second time he has sought financial relief from the courts. This brings to light an important question: Should elected officials be accountable for the actions of all family members – including in-laws? I fully recognize the connection between Deal and his son-in-law’s bankruptcy in this case. Deal personally lent financial support to his daughter and son-in-law for a business venture. That venture failed. However, had the Deal children borrowed money from a bank, rather than Dad, would the bank be judged on the couple’s failed business? Deal has assured the public he will not file bankruptcy personally and intends to pay all his financial obligations. His own home is up for sale and in jeopardy of foreclosure. Deal’s situation is familiar to many Georgians who find themselves in financial predicaments they never anticipated or expected. Whether that commiseration will translate to votes for or against Deal will not become evident until November 2.

Name Change for Medical College of Georgia

As college expenses continue to rise for Georgia’s parents and the HOPE scholarship teeters on the brink of jeopardy, Georgia’s Board of Regents has deemed this the appropriate time to spend nearly $3 million to change the name of the Medical College of Georgia to Georgia’s Health Sciences University. I experienced a branding effort when the Tampa Tribune adopted “Life. Printed Daily.” Rebranding is not an inexpensive endeavor. Everything from marquees to business cards and notepads has to be redesigned and reprinted. The proposed $2.9 million budget is intended to change signage and printed materials. It does not include costs for “communicating and promoting the new name,” according to the college’s website.

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