Michelle Nunn and her family are on a minivan tour of Georgia, taking the message of her U.S. Senate cities in 14 days.
Nunn, the daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, was in Columbus Thursday, spreading her “What Washington can learn from Georgia” campaign slogan. Some of the lessons she said she would like to take to Washington are civility, compromise and cooperation.
“The power of individuals to lift themselves up and make a difference in the lives of others,” she said. “The capacity of people to work together, despite differences, to get things done.
“I absolutely believe that if we send people to Washington who believe in the spirit of civility and of getting things done, working together, putting aside differences, I think we can see change.”
Nunn’s early poll numbers put her even or slightly ahead of the most prominent Republican hopefuls, U.S. Reps. Phil Gingrey and Jack Kingston, businessman David Purdue and for Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel.
An early Republican tactic has been to tie Nunn, a Democrat, to President Obama, whose disapproval numbers are high in Georgia. Not long after she announced her candidacy, Brad Dayspring, spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, made reference to “the Obama/Nunn agenda, and the ramifications that it has.”
Nunn said she was not aware of any such agenda.
“I’ve had the privilege of working with Preisdent George H.W. Bush for six years,” Nunn said. “So when they tie me to President Obama, whom I’ve only met once or twice, they’re not mentioning that I spent most of the last decade working in partnership with President Bush to get things done. That’s the spirit I want to convey to Georgians.”
Nunn’s father served in the Senate for 24 years, from 1972 to 1997, in an era that saw more civility between the political parties, especially in the Senate. She said when she told her father about her intention to seek the office he once held, he took it with “a mixture of pride and a little bit of anxiety.
“I remember talking to President George H.W. Bush about how much more difficult it was to watch his son endure the slings and arrows of politics than it was to endure them himself,” Nunn said. “I think that’s true for my parents, and would be for any parent, watching their child getting into the political arena these days.”
Nunn, her husband Ron Martin, 10-year-old son Vinson and 8-year-old daughter Elizabeth, stopped in at the Children’s Treehouse run by Twin Cedars Youth and Family Services, in downtown Columbus Thursday to campaign and to help stuff backpacks for local foster children.