The second Democratic Incumbent Matchup in the State House

This is the second part of a two part post about Donkeys going to war, the first can be read here.

Simone Bell has represented Southeast Atlanta (Grant Park and its curtilage) since a 2009 Special election. Reapportionment has pushed her district west and combined it with that of Ralph Long. However, it is way more of Long’s old district than it was Bell’s (6 precincts to 1 by my count), as it extends into Capitol View and south, areas represented by Long since his election in 2008.  So two elections each, first on the ballot and a lady’s name probably help Bell out a bit, but Ralph, according to his web site bio, is a III, so I’m calling that even.

Out of context quotes from their bios that tell you all you need to know:

Bell: “She is the first African American OUT lesbian to serve in a State House in the United States.”

Long: “Ralph Long, III would like to use the same commitment and passion evidenced by his home renovations to better his community and Georgia in the Georgia House of Representatives.”

Progressive voters will love that Simone Bell is the first African-American lesbian in any State legislature, but Ryan Gravel, he of the Beltline has endorsed Ralph Long.

So who wins? Looks like a true toss-up with two incumbents in a battle of street money and yard signs. The June 30 disclosure might tell us all we need to know, unless one side does a mailer telling voters the other person is a huge Atlanta Dream fan. Good luck to both!


  1. Scarlett says:

    100% behind Simone in this race. She’s both the stronger legislator and better person, IMO.

  2. Baker says:

    I just read that bit of Mr. Long’s site about the home renovations….interesting.

    I think Simone wins in the website competition.

  3. The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

    In an epic race for all of the marbles to see who will serve in the Legislature as one of the least acknowledged and most ignored lawmakers in a state that is increasingly dominated by Republicans.

    Attempting to play up the drama, thrills and importance of a race between two decidedly left-wing Southwest Atlanta Democrat House candidates in a state dominated by supposedly “Conservative” politics is the political equivalent of attempting to play up the importance of a fight over a couple of dollars of cash between two homeless panhandlers on the streets of Atlanta.

    It may be an amusing little trainwreck to glance at while riding by, but in the bigger scheme of things it means absolutely nothing.

    • Charlie says:

      Your narrow life view is becoming grating. There is more to life and to Georgia Politics than the last paving contract you feel you were screwed out of.

      Based on changing demographics alone, there will be a day most likely within a decade that Democrats are competitive statewide again. Republicans who are politically tone deaf and have lost the fear of the voters may accelerate this. Maybe not.

      But the fact is that the democrats that do remain are the start of a very narrow bench. Those that remain will have to grow the party.

      Just because something doesn’t matter to you doesn’t make it inconsequential.

      As for your comments, you say quite a lot here but rarely say anything constructive. You are overly negative, and rarely bring anything new to the table. It’s time you make a choice that you’re actually going to participate here in a constructive way, or find another passtime.

      Reading paragraph after paragraph from you saying nothing more than “everyone is corrupt” and “Georgia sucks” has grown tiresome. Bring something new to the table or prepare to move on.

      • Toxic Avenger says:

        Charlie, this is why I like and respect you, although we differ politically. Thanks.

      • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

        Sorry, I didn’t realize that I was going overboard on the negativity and I didn’t mean to become grating to the point of making everyone feel depressed when they read my posts.

        I’ll take yours and Buzz’s advice and make a concerted effort to lighten up on the negativity, though I’ll warn everyone to probably not to expect me to breakout the poms-poms and the spirit fingers just yet.

        I will also say that I’ve got to cut down on these all-too-frequent visits to the Principal’s Office here at Peach Pundit.

        I will also say that even though the Democrats are not my favorite political party these days (Dems shouldn’t take it personal as the Republicans aren’t on the top of a list of my favorites these days, either), I agree with your point that the Democrats have a good shot at becoming competitive once again sometime in the future due to a combination of changing demographics within the state at-large and the political and governing incompetence of the now-ruling Republicans.

        And, by the way, for the record, it wasn’t a paving contract that I was screwed out of, it was an airport contract that my company was screwed out of in the name of “increasing diversity”, though the contract thing was an excellent guess.

  4. Mrs. Adam Kornstein says:

    In speaking with folks in the newly drawn district, many are reticent to “endorse” put a yard sign or pledge they votes in public. However once some learn of the other issues Rep. Bell worked on the more they are ready to vote for her. Many of Rep. Long’s voters remember his support of Norwood and are still grumpy about that.

    I’m consistently told how responsive she is to emails, calls and media requests.

    Toss up maybe, but I give the edge to Bell.

    • Parker says:

      I’m pretty sure that the only person still mad at Rep. Long for endorsing Mary Norwood is the Mayor. It’s definitely not the many Atlantans, especially those in the Southwest Atlanta portion of HD 58, who continue to live in a city that is largely unpoliced and filled with blight.

      The truth of the matter is that the numbers in this race are not at all in Rep. Bell’s favor and she won’t have the time or the savvy to catch up to Long.

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