On the record – off the clock.  On the Political Breakfast podcast, veteran Atlanta political reporter Denis O’Hayer hosts a conversation between strategists from the right and the left. Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson and Republican strategist Brian Robinson bring their personalities and passion to the table for an informed, respectful and lively discussion. They spar, they delve into topics others avoid, and they give credit where it’s due. It’s all steered by Denis O’Hayer, who has covered Georgia politics for close to 40 years. Scroll down to see the latest episodes.

Throughout the 2020 state legislative session, Political Breakfast presents Gold Dome Scramble, a pop-up podcast in which host Lisa Rayam talks with reporters from the WABE newsroom to break things down for our listeners — the issues being considered, and the bills getting sorted through various committees. They’ll lay out the context and explain what comes next. Episodes will be clear, concise and short — with each lasting less than 15 minutes. Listen to Gold Dome Scramble below and find out more about it here.


Featured Episode

COVID Warnings & Mask Decisions; Budget Cuts Go Deep

As Georgia’s COVID-19 case numbers continue to soar, the warnings from public health leaders here continue to darken. But the debate over how best to keep from getting there has intensified—with leaders in some cities publicly confronting Governor Brian Kemp. Meanwhile, the governor and officials at every level in the state try to figure out how to adjust to state budget cuts that will affect us all. WABE political contributor Denis O’Hayer talks it over with Republican strategist Brian Robinson and Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson.

Gold Dome Scramble: Liquor Delivery And Hate Crimes Bill Pass Georgia Legislature

Georgia lawmakers ended their 40 day session, but not before passing a tight budget, allowing liquor delivery and making history with a hate crimes bill. Host Lisa Rayam talks with Emma Hurt and Emil Moffatt about the end of the 2020 Georgia legislative session.

Georgia Lawmakers Move To Pass Hate Crime Bill; Coronavirus Numbers; Absentee Voting

After resisting the idea for years, Georgia lawmakers suddenly moved fast to pass a hate crimes bill. Meanwhile, some grim Coronavirus numbers raised the question of whether the state re-opened too fast. And the Secretary of State promised some fixes that will speed up the long voting lines in some counties—but there’s a battle over reaching absentee voters who don’t want to stand in line. WABE political contributor Denis O’Hayer wades into it all with Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson and Republican strategist Brian Robinson.

Gold Dome Scramble: Georgia Hate Crimes Bill Takes Detour

A much anticipated hate crimes bill now includes police as a protected class in Georgia. It’s a hurdle lawmakers have to tackle while also cutting 11 percent from the state budget. In this Coronavirus remote edition, host Lisa Rayam talks with Emma Hurt and Emil Moffatt about these and other issues that are getting attention at the state legislature.

Charges in Rayshard Brooks Killing; Policing Debate Intensifies; Coronavirus Persists

After the Fulton County District Attorney announced charges against two Atlanta police officers involved in the killing of Rayshard Brooks, the debate over new rules for law enforcement continued, while the Atlanta department saw an outbreak of blue flu. Meanwhile, the Coronavirus served notice to Georgia that it hasn’t gone anywhere, and there’s a new chapter in the fight for one of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats. Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson and Republican strategist Brian Robinson join WABE political contributor Denis O’Hayer for this edition of the Political Breakfast.

Gold Dome Scramble: Lawmakers Return To The Capitol Amidst Protests And Voting Problems

State lawmakers return to the Georgia State Capitol for 11 days to finish the 2020 legislative session amidst protests, voting problems and renewed calls for a hate crimes law. Covid-19 had put the session on hold. WABE’s Susanna Capelouto guest hosts this episode and talks with politics reporters Emma Hurt and Emil Moffatt about what to expect this week.

Voting Meltdown Hearings; Senate Strategies; Hate Crimes Bill; Confederate Monuments

Primary election day turned into primary election week, as vote counting continued. But with runoffs and November looming, the scramble to fix this week’s mess is on. The surviving campaigns check the numbers and plan for more battle, while the battle against the Coronavirus isn’t over—and those numbers could change everything again, even as the Legislature returns tries to figure out how much the state has to spend. WABE political contributor Denis O’Hayer talks it all over with Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson and Republican strategist Brian Robinson.

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