Author

Jay Bookman

Jay Bookman

Jay Bookman covered Georgia and national politics for nearly 30 years for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, earning numerous national, regional and state journalism awards. He has been awarded the National Headliner Award and the Walker Stone Award for outstanding editorial writing, and is the only two-time winner of the Pulliam Fellowship granted by the Society of Professional Journalists. He is also the author of "Caught in the Current," published by St. Martin's Press.

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Ralston’s Fulton elections letter a cynical way to stir mistrust

By: - July 22, 2021

It takes a special kind of cynicism to piously bemoan declining faith in American elections while you actively feed and nurture that very same, destructive mistrust. It’s particularly special when you create that mistrust out of fantasies and lies, with absolutely no basis in fact. We got yet another example of that hypocrisy last week, […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Blame murder surge on pandemic-related rage and gun sales

By: - July 8, 2021

The rising number of murders in the Atlanta metro region, some of them apparently random, has truly been alarming, and it’s important to try to grasp what its causes might be. If the phenomenon was local, then you might suspect that the causes and solutions are local as well. But it’s not. It’s occurring all […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Trump quits court battle but recklessly urges followers to fight

By: - June 24, 2021

This week, Donald Trump was finally forced to admit the truth: He lost Georgia fair and square, the multiple lawsuits that he and the Georgia GOP filed to try to throw out the state’s 5 million presidential votes had been based on lies and fantasies, and the entire argument they tried to make had zero […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Hysteria over ‘critical race theory’ is to deny bigotry still with us

By: - June 10, 2021

Prodded by Gov. Brian Kemp, the state Board of Education last week waded into the controversy over “critical race theory,” or more accurately, into a cartoon version of the theory that has been ginned up by Fox News and the conservative entertainment industry to keep its viewers in a state of racial panic. “The United […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Making Hice state election chief like handing safe keys to robber

By: - May 27, 2021

Jody Hice poses a test of character and patriotism for Georgia Republicans. It’s a test that many of those voters proudly insist they will fail. At the moment, Hice remains a congressman, representing the state’s 10th Congressional District. In that role, he has been a prominent, vocal champion of the Big Lie about the 2020 […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Floodgates swing open for special-interest money during session

By: - May 13, 2021

Let me introduce you to Jeff Mullis, chair of the Rules Committee in the Georgia state Senate and one of the most powerful people in Georgia politics. If you want a piece of legislation passed, you need to go through Mullis. As Rules chair, he pretty much decides if and when a bill gets a […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Carr chooses truth-telling over Republican’s Trump tribalism

By: - April 29, 2021

Last week, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr resigned as chair of the Republican Attorneys General Association, explaining that he had fundamental and irresolvable differences with the group’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. Carr’s actions should be applauded, even by – especially by – Democrats. Across the country, only a relative […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: GOP uses government power to cancel First Amendment

By: - April 15, 2021

Last month, Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian took the bold step of daring to criticize the actions of the Georgia General Assembly. As Bastian put it in a memo to Delta employees, Georgia had just enacted legislation “that could make it harder for many Georgians, particularly those in our Black and brown communities, to […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Trump’s arm-twisting might have worked under new election rules

By: - April 1, 2021

Almost five months later, Donald Trump’s dictatorial refusal to accept defeat still looms large over the country, particularly here in Georgia. It continues to alter election law, election outcomes, the arc of political careers and even the course of American history. Admittedly, some of those consequences have been positive. In January, after witnessing Trump’s attempt […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Recalling Zell while Geoff Duncan risks ‘doing the right thing’

By: - March 18, 2021

“Republicans don’t need election reform to win. We need leadership,” Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan told Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press” over the weekend. “I think there’s millions of Republicans waking up around the country that are realizing that Donald Trump’s divisive tone and strategy is unwinnable in forward-looking elections. We need real leadership, […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Voter fraud lie forces frenzy of voter suppression bills

By: - March 4, 2021

A lie is a fickle creature. Once told, a lie marches free into the world, with its own agenda, out of control of those who created it. And as Georgia Republicans are discovering, a lie that is big enough and powerful enough can even turn on its masters, forcing those who created it to now […]

COMMENTARY

Bookman: Georgia GOP ensnared by hostility to health care safety net

By: - February 18, 2021

Georgia Republicans are caught in a trap, trying to adjust to a rapidly changing state while also trying to placate a party base that has no interest in change, and that is often aggressively opposed to it. Put another way, they have to change, yet they can’t change, and nowhere is that dilemma more daunting […]