Exclusive: Rep. Paul Broun Announces Candidacy for US Senate, Steals Karen Handel’s Thunder

Karen & Paul

Former Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Karen Handel and Congressman Paul Broun in a playful exchange following his impromptu announcement for US Senate

Tonight was a night of surprises for anyone who attended the Georgia C.H.A.R.G.E (Citizens Helping America Restore Government Ethics) meeting in Gwinnett county. Luckily, ViralRead was on the scene with a front row seat to all the fireworks. The surprise, however, didn’t come from the keynote speaker, former Secretary of State and 2010 gubernatorial candidate Karen Handel. Moments before the meeting was underway Congressman Paul Broun (R-Athens) shocked the crowd as he walked into the room with his wife, Niki Broun, and a top-level staffer.

Jaws hit the floor as Representative Broun took the stage and began discussing the usual/current problems in Washington: Congressional gridlock, damage made to the Republican brand, as well as the lack of leadership coming from the West Wing. As the speech wound down, most folks in the audience were looking at one another, presumably thinking the same thing: Is Congressman Broun going to state his case and make his formal announcement to run to replace retiring Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss? To everyone’s dismay, his closing statement did no such thing.

Thankfully, this isn’t where the story ended. As Congressman Broun sat down to a room full of applause followed by a short silence, Dr. Broun’s wife, Niki, stood up in front of the crowd and courageously declared that not only did her husband have her permission and support to run to be Georgia’s next junior U.S. Senator, but that he was openly announcing his candidacy, the first to formally do so in the wake of Senator Chambliss’ declaration to resign following the remainder of his current term.

Karen Handel did her best to finish the show with grace, as she herself left the door open for a potential run to replace Chambliss. However, with an expected announcement from Congressman Tom Price (R-Roswell) regarding his own entrance into the Senatorial race in the coming days, Handel may be taking a much closer look at replacing him amongst Georgia’s congressional delegation.

Other notable politicos rumored to be looking at the race include Congressman Lynn Westmoreland (R-Columbus), Congressman Jack Kingston (R-Savannah), Congressman Tom Graves (R-Ranger), and Congressman Phil Gingrey (R-Marietta).

Needless to say, it’s gonna be a fun couple years for political junkies in the state of Georgia.

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5 Responses to “Exclusive: Rep. Paul Broun Announces Candidacy for US Senate, Steals Karen Handel’s Thunder”

  1. vanessa green
    January 30, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

    Mr. O’Shea,

    My name is Vanessa Hall Green and I am the Social Media/Communications director for Citizens Helping America Restore Government Ethics. I only met you briefly last evening at our rally in Lawrenceville and had no idea you were a blogger. After reading your little “scoop” here this morning, I just have to say that I and my fellow members of C.H.A.R.G.E. were more than a little taken aback, sir!

    Since we are an ethics organization, it does bother us that someone would come to our meeting and not mention the fact that he planned to write about us AT ALL to ANYONE in attendance. What would have been wrong with just saying the truth-we have no problem with coverage of our group’s meetings. In fact, we do welcome the publicity. :)

    However, you really need to get your facts straight if you are going to embark upon such an observatory political blog.

    1) There were NO SURPRISES at all when Paul Broun walked in with his wife, Niki, and campaign mgr, Jordan. Paul was invited to be our guest and to speak if he so chose to.
    2)Congressman Broun has been a member of C.H.A.R.G.E. since our last rally back in August of 2012.
    3)Karen Handel did not have to RECOVER from anything or strain to be GRACEFUL! You know, because you were there, sir, that she and Paul exchanged jokes about the other regarding such an announcement and she went on smoothly with her speech about her book, Planned Bullyhood.
    4)Your allusions to fireworks, and dropped jaws, and shocked faces suggest a far more dramatic scene than the rest of us witnessed last night. What we had was an unplanned, but NOT totally unexpected announcement BY friends TO friends. The members of C.H.A.R.G.E. supported Paul Broun in his last Congressional campaign and we actually formed originally from Karen Handel’s 2010 Gwinnett committee for her governor campaign.

    I would suggest to you that you have overplayed the drama here, Mr. O’Shea to try and enhance some kind of exclusive scoop on Broun’s announcement. News flash: practically everyone saw Paul’s announcement coming, so it really isnt much of a scoop-just sort of a set of dramatically phrased words that usurp some of the facts of the story for their own glorification!

  2. Judy Bailey
    January 30, 2013 at 1:51 pm #

    I also attended this event.

    I agree with Vanessa. Congressman Broun was not a surprise guest he was invited. I did not see anyone drop their jaws when Nikki Broun stated her support for her husband as a candiate for the US Senate. I think your description is over stated.

    Karen Handel gave an outstanding presentation. There was no recovery. It was sooo good that she sold EVERY book. I am sure she was also aware that Congressman Broun was considering the run for Senate.

    One more thing, Mr. O’Shea, why didn’t you identify yourself when asked if any reporters were in the room? It would have been the ethical thing to do. C.H.A.R.G.E. is all about ethics and you failed the test.

  3. Owl Jones
    January 31, 2013 at 5:17 am #

    Laughable. First you say that you’re OK with people writing about your meetings - then you go on to blast the guy for his report. I’ve been in enough political circus meetings to know that there are alot of very unperceptive people in this world. Maybe the author saw something you didn’t? Or maybe, just maybe…you’d like to make sure Karen Handel isn’t seen in a negative light? I don’t know the author, but I know how members of the GOP handle “ethics” - and this is a perfect example of it. If I didn’t know better, I’d think I was reading responses from Democratic Underground. Carry on, Mr. Blogger - you have ever right to your opinion, despite what this “C.H.A.R.G.E.” group thinks about it. Or are we to assume that had they known there were “reporters” in the room, things would have gone differently? Now that would be good old RINO GOP “ethics” in action right there. LOL

  4. Judy Bailey
    January 31, 2013 at 11:40 am #

    Owl Jones, I am OK with people writing about the meetings. Many people were posting to FaceBook and Twitter during the meeting. Those writings did not reflect what this article reported. This article is overstated and damatized. Congressman Broun’s EXPECTED announcement did not steal the show nor was Karen Handel flustered by the expected announcement. Karen was not there to discuss polictics, she was there to talk about her book. Had you attended the meeting you would know this to be true.

  5. Chip Shirley
    February 6, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

    As I said when I was first elected to the House of Repersentatives many years ago, I stand for one issue and one issue only! LEGALIZE MARIJUANA! That’s WEED, GANJA, POT, SHIT whatever you call it, it’s good and it’s good for you. That’s why the first bill I sponsored in the House was to make medical marijuana legal, I’m a doctor, so I figured that would get me my supply right there, but HELL NO! The Liibuhralls shut that down! So dig this I’m running for

    And I’m gonna straighten this shit out! And remember, anyone who says pot isn’t a good drug and shouldn’t be legal is telling…