Price Looking to Move Up, Others Look To Run

As Ed posted earlier, Politico is reporting that 6th District Congressman Tom Price is in the running to be president-elect Trump’s Secretary of Health and Human Services. Local rumors also have him as a front runner to be the Office of Management and Budget Director. As many Americans are now coming to terms with, it seems that the good people of Georgia’s 6th district may like their doctor and be losing him anyway.

The political ripple effect of a Price vacancy could be felt across the north metro Atlanta area and is sure to upset more than one ambitious plan for higher office. After a weeklong break from electoral politics, aimless speculation as to who an open congressional seat benefits looks to be just what the doctor ordered!

A quick note: our look at the Georgia Constitution seems to indicate that any state or local elected announcing a bid for the open congressional seat would have to vacate their current position in order to run.  Which means…more speculation.

To the line!

From the Georgia House:

Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones:

Representative Jones is probably one of the strongest potential candidates to fill this seat for a variety of reasons. Her fundraising numbers have been strong for the House caucus and she’s shown an ability to sit down at a table to get things done across political and ideological lines. The biggest hindrance to a run? Jones has put in a lot of time and effort into moving up the ladder of House hierarchy. Taking a leap towards Congress may not be worth throwing that all away.

Representative Betty Price:

Following Jan Jones, Betty Price would also start in a strong position if she were to run. Besides the obvious advantage of the Price political and fundraising network, Rep. Price has demonstrated policy chops in her first cycle in the General Assembly and could clear the field of a good number of potential challengers.

Representative Chuck Martin:

Rep. Martin could benefit from favorable geography that puts him in a good position to make a run for an open 6th District seat. On the other hand, his ability to fundraise in a potentially crowded field would be put to the test while running against better known opponents. Also, a bid for Congress would mean leaving prime spots on the House Appropriations Committee, Ways and Means, and the chairmanship of the Budget and Fiscal Affairs Oversight Committee.

From the Georgia Senate:

Senator Brandon Beach:

The surest bet to throw their hat in the ring may very well be state senator Brandon Beach. After an impressive re-election win that at times looked in doubt, Beach looks to have the “fire in the belly”. His strong fundraising ability and stated interest in a vacancy make him impossible to overlook.

Senator John Albers:

For those wanting a rematch from 2010, Senator Albers could once again face a former primary foe, Senator Beach, in a congressional seat tangle. Albers has been kicking the tires with supporters, so a large field may include his name.

Senator Hunter Hill:

Despite hailing from the 11th congressional district, with a little ambition you could see Senator Hill on the ballot for Price’s seat. A compelling personal story centered around his military service could help propel Hill to Congress — he would just have to relinquish influential committee placements on Rules, Appropriations, and Finance to name a few.

Senator Judson Hill

When Congressman Price seriously looked at a Senate bid in 2014, Sen. Judson Hill tested the waters with national GOP higher-ups in case of a vacancy. Now that he may get his wish, Hill’s policy chops could help him get to Congress.

Big Fish To Watch:

Karen Handel:

This is her back yard. Any north Fulton multiple choice question will have the former Georgia Secretary of State as a potential answer. Most think she wouldn’t challenge the Price family if Betty decided to run, but if Handel is looking at getting back in it, she could emerge as the early front-runner with her grassroots network.

Lynne Riley

Well-liked and very well-regarded in her time steering the Georgia Department of Revenue, Riley would be a dark horse to make the race interesting.

Wild Cards:

Doug Macginnitie may look to re-enter the political arena after falling short in a run for Secretary of State in 2010. Bruce LeVell, a member of Trump’s national team may try to call in some fundraising favors to get to D.C. Fulton County Commissioner Liz Hausmann knows the area and may be looking for a change of scenery. No speculation post would be complete without mentioning the newly minted Attorney General, Chris Carr. His folks adamantly state that he’s staying put and will run for election in 2018. But, there’s not an open congressional seat close by…yet.

Deserving A Mention:

All politics is local, and anyone with a corner of 6th district local politics could carve out enough fundraising from a fairly wealthy district to make a run for a presumed tight special election.  Ones to watch? Fulton County Manager Dick Anderson, Johns Creek City Councilman Steve Broadbent, Johns Creek City Councilman Bob Gray, Sandy Springs City Councilman Gabriel Sterling, and Sandy Springs Mayor and former GAGOP Chair Rusty Paul.

If you’re reading this post, potentially plan on potentially running for Congressman Price’s potentially vacant congressional seat, and I didn’t include you in this post… I regret the error and blame others.

Comment below on anyone you think we missed or shouldn’t have included.

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The Eiger
The Eiger

Things are about to get CRAZY.

davidmac
davidmac

Any Democrats likely to run?

The Eiger
The Eiger

I’m sure there will be a token democrat on the ballot, but they have zero chance. Bob Montigel who ran against Price in 2012 and 2014 will probably run.

davidmac
davidmac

I’d throw my own name in, then, but I don’t have $5k to waste.

The Eiger
The Eiger

It would be a waste. I understand the loyal opposition, but it’s hard for me to think about throwing that qualifying fee away. $5k can buy lots of bourbon and fly fishing gear.

davidmac
davidmac

Yeah. I’d put on more of a campaign that Stooksbury did though.

Will Durant
Will Durant

While speculating is fun I don’t think Trump himself was prepared to actually be elected. Apparently his teevee role is still his guidepost as the transition team’s firings are exceeding the hiring. Price, Gingrich, etc. shouldn’t be counting any chickens just yet, much less the local conga line.

Charlie
Charlie

Griftdrift was snubbed. Sad!

The Eiger
The Eiger

I’m kind of mad that I was snubbed too.

Charlie
Charlie

Cody is leaving you plenty of room to sneak up the middle.

augusta52
augusta52

Yes, a Democrat would be hard-pressed to win this district—it would take something unusual for this district to be politically competitive—like Trump. While Romney got 61% in this district 4 years ago against Obama, Trump won the district by a very slim margin over Clinton last week, not even breaking the 50% mark in the district (getting somewhere in the 48-49% against Clinton). But there are few Democratic officials living in this district, so the natural focus is on Republicans. Albers’ State Senate district is almost in the center of the 6th CD—-and almost all of his Senate districts overlaps… Read more »

The Eiger
The Eiger

“Trump won the district by a very slim margin over Clinton last week, not even breaking the 50% mark in the district (getting somewhere in the 48-49% against Clinton).”

When the final numbers come out I think you will see that Clinton won the 6th district. By 522 votes to be exact. Clinton – 47.67%; Trump – 47.52%; Johnson – 4.81%

augusta52
augusta52

Eiger, how did you come up with 522 vote-margin for Clinton? Parts of the district have to be estimated because there are several split precincts in the Cobb portion of the district—the 6th CD shares some Marietta/East Cobb districts with the 11th District.

The Eiger
The Eiger

You have to do it by hand precinct by precinct. You are right about estimating the split precincts and there are just a few of them. But if you count the whole precincts she wins by 522. The very few precincts that are split tend to be more liberal so there is a small chance that he won becasue I’m counting a few extra democrat votes from the 11th. Either way they both got somewhere between 47%-48%. Which is why I thought Georgia was in play. I didn’t think it possible to lose or barely win the 6th district and… Read more »

augusta52
augusta52

There were 326,000 votes cast in Price’s congressional race (where, rounded to nearest whole number, he got 62% of the vote). I have rough estimate of about 330,000 votes cast for president in the district (you figure there will be some “ballot dropoff” even in this district, so the total presidential votes will exceed the total congressional votes here)–Trump with about 159,000 votes, Clinton with 154,000 or so and Gary Johnson about 16,000 votes. A hard district to calculate indeed because there are no whole counties in the district—just partial ones, which means adding precinct after precinct. Hopefully we agree… Read more »

The Eiger
The Eiger

This isn’t a joke, but I would not be surprised if there were more votes cast in the congressional race than in the race for president in the 6th district. We won’t know until the SOS releases their final tallies. I still don’t understand why they can’t do a live breakdown by congressional district. It wouldn’t be that hard. You are right the ballot dropoff always happens, but it could have been in the reverse this time around. But you are correct in that the reason Georgia wasn’t in play was because of the 9th and 14th districts.

augusta52
augusta52

Eiger, cursory glance at some precincts in 6th CD does not support theory that more votes were cast for Congress than president in the district…some sample precincts: DEKALB: President Congress Difference Austin 1,941 1,912 -29 Dunwoody 1,881 1,831 -50 Henderson Mill 2,072 2,005 -67 Mt Vernon East 1,901 1,884 -17 Tucker 2,130 2,039 -91 COBB: Addison 1,664 1,651 -13 Eastside 1 2,162 2,159 -3 Murdock 1 2,826 2.818 -8 Pope 1 2,224 2,178 -46 Shallow Falls 1 2,435 2,409 -26 And that does not figure in write-in votes (probably a lot more of those for president than Congress in the… Read more »

The Eiger
The Eiger

I’ve got 209 precincts as well and I was looking at raw votes cast for Price vs. Trump. Obliviously, Price got more. I was looking at the wrong column in my spread sheet when I said more people could have voted in the congressional race. Anyway you slice it Trump got less than 50% in a district that Romney got 61%. That was a terrible showing and will be something that he needs to work on between now and 2020.

augusta52
augusta52

Agreed (on Trump)…the weak Trump showing in the 6th CD may have been preordained by the results in the presidential primary back in March—this was the only GOP-held congressional seat in Georgia to back Rubio over Trump. The 6th District is easily Georgia’s wealthiest and best-educated congressional district, and home to many non-Georgians who probably had some suspicions about Trump’s populism and demeanor. Like many wealthy districts, it is not a “Bible-thumping” one—home to a large number of Catholics and Jews, which can explain its lukewarm support for “personhood” back in the 2012 GOP state primary (55%) and rabid support… Read more »

The Eiger
The Eiger

If you are a surgeon turned politican that spends your entire political career working on healthcare issue you don’t turn down HHS. The rule making process at CMS and the FDA could be helped along by someone who knows what those harmful rules actually does when taking care of patients.

Bobcat25
Bobcat25

A dynamic newcomer also needs to put near the top, Fulton County Commissioner, BOB ELLIS.

Rambler14
Rambler14

If we’re including Mayors and Councilmembers,

how about term-limited current Roswell mayor Jere Wood?