On Saturday, October 27, Lesli Messinger, a Democratic candidate for Georgia’s First Congressional seat , hosted a “Meet and Greet” at K.D.s Café in downtown Waycross in an effort to meet Ware County Democrats and to listen to their concerns on a myriad of topics ranging from education to health care.
Rural Georgia matters, but for incumbent Republican Jack Kingston, it has been an area that he has neglected for too long during his two decades as southeast Georgia’s congressman.
Messinger stated as part of her campaign message …“We must build coalitions to create jobs and keep communities and coastlines strong by investing in transportation infrastructure, ensuring that youth have access to quality education, by supporting U.S. veterans and military families, and protecting the guarantee of Medicare for seniors…”
Kingston voted for the punitive and fiscally irresponsible Ryan Plan. Kingston voted to make it harder for students to go to college by reducing the availability of Pell grants.
..”We must keep America moving forward and ensure that basic rights for women, children and seniors are not stripped away….”
Lesli Messinger, who is running to replace one of the Congress’ most conservative Republican members, wants to be a voice for all areas of the First Congressional District which includes Ware County and its largest city, Waycross.
Every vote counts, but a renewed focus on registration will be needed as we head into 2014.
According to revised 2011 Census figures, Ware County has 36,474 people. And 23.6 percent of the population is under 18 years old. So there is approximately 28,000 in Ware County who are 18 and over and is of voting age.
However, according to the Secretary of State, there are only 16,594 registered voters as of October 1. Potentially, there are thousands of Ware County citizens–many in Waycross– who are not registered.
If more Ware County citizens were registered especially in DISTRICT 1, DISTRICT 2A and DISTRICT 2B, Ware County Democrats would be in an infinitely stronger position moving forward–especially with the Georgia governor’s race along with congressional and statewide elections around the corner in 2014.
The city of Waycross has voted overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates over the years and in 2008, President Barack Obama had won Ware County’s largest precinct (District 1) and the fourth largest voting precinct in Ware County–District 2B.
The following is a look at the 12 voting precincts that make up Ware County. The number to the left is how many registered voters there are in each individual precinct as October 1.
3,617 DISTRICT 1 First Baptist Church (Waycross)
2,981 1231-150B Sweat Memorial Baptist Church (Waycross)
2,590 1231-151 Exchange Club Building (Waycross)
2,098 DISTRICT 2A Memorial Stadium (Waycross)
1,276 JAMESTOWN Jamestown Baptist Church
939 DISTRICT 2B Brunel Street Church of God (Waycross)
823 1231-150C Emerson Park Volunteer Fire Station
755 WARESBORO Waresboro Church of God
296 BEACH-BICKLEY Bickley Volunteer Fire Station
453 HAYWOOD Dixie Union Volunteer Fire Station
406 MANOR Manor Volunteer Fire Station
360 MILLWOOD Millwood Baptist Church
There have been multiple political events over the past few weeks in Waycross. One event entitled “Hooping For Obama” provided a venue for basketball, but an opportunity to bring awareness of what is at stake during the upcoming November election.
Ware and the city of Waycross will play an important role in whether Republican obstructionism continues or is stopped and Lesli Messinger has come forward via her candidacy to make sure Jack Kingston’s reign comes to an end as southeast Georgia’s congressman along with helping President Barack Obama get re-elected.
Chatham is the largest population center in the First Congressional District followed by Glynn County. However, Ware County’s 16,000 voters can help erase whatever perceived advantage Kingston has had over the past two decades.
Ware County currently has the seventh largest population center in the First Congressional District.
According to the Secretary of State website, the following is how the First Congressional District’s registration totals look in early September:
For Rural Georgia to grow and move ‘forward’, it has become very evident that Jack Kingston needs to be voted out of office.
Waycross has lost approximately 4.5 percent of its population over the past decade according to the 2010 census. Right now, the population is 14,649.
The average median household income for the city of Waycross is approximately $25,845. However, Ware County overall is $36,000. The Peach State’s average median average household income is $49,347.