The election will be held Nov. 6. These contested local races will be on ballots in Brookhaven.

U.S. House of Representatives

Fifth District

John Lewis

John Lewis (D) (I)

Occupation:  U.S. Representative Fifth Congressional District of Georgia

City or neighborhood of residence:  Atlanta

Experience in elective office:  Member, Atlanta City Council

Other community experience or activities: Chairman, SNCC; last living Speaker from the 1963 March on Washington

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

I am honored that the people of the Fifth Congressional District of Georgia have allowed me to serve and represent them in Congress since 1986. They have been more than good to me and I’ve tried to be good to them. I am proud of my record on the issues affecting the lives of the people in the Fifth Congressional District of Georgia.

Those of us who came through the early days of the movement were grounded in our faith, grounded in our belief that somehow and some way we would have a victory, that we would overcome, that we would be able to redeem society and create what Dr. King called the Beloved Community. A world at peace with itself that values the dignity and worth of every human being. This is our mission, this is our calling. I want to go back to Congress to continue working to create the Beloved Community.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in the new Congress?

As a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee and the ranking member of the Ways and Means Oversight Committee, I will continue to fight to make sure that safety, education, and healthcare are not compromised while making sure that we have the resources to protect the vital programs which help give our fellow Americans a chance to succeed.

Howard Stopeck

Howard Stopeck (R)

Occupation: retired attorney

Residence: Atlanta, Virginia Highland area

Experience in elective office: none

Other community service: president of the Hyam Solomon also editor of Metropolitan Chicago B’nai Brith

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

I’ll save the economy and care for the poor more than just keep them alive. I designed the transparent tax, an equitable, efficient, simple revenue neutral tax reform, that everybody will be able to clearly understand and that will give the middle class a 30 percent lifetime tax reduction, increase corporate taxes double, increase corporate profits and give every corporation a $1 million tax exemption. I shift the tax burden from households to corporations, eliminate all tax exemption loopholes, with no exception, and save the economy. It’s the best thing since sliced bread.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in the new Congress?

Easy. How do you lift the poor from the dust? How do you care for them more than keeping them alive? This tax will put more money in people’s pockets. Then I would propose legislation to reinstitute the draft – mandatory, no exemptions. If women had young children, they would be provided child care. No deferments for school. No deferments for anything. Everybody does it. People need to serve. It would be non-combat. And they would be working on our infrastructure, things we need done.

Sixth District

Rep. Tom Price

Tom Price (R) (I)

Occupation: Orthopedic Surgeon

Residence: Roswell

Experience in elective office:  was first elected to represent Georgia’s 6th district in November 2004. Prior to going to Washington, he served four terms in the Georgia Senate – two as Minority Whip.  In 2002, he was a leader in the Republican renaissance in Georgia as the party took control of the state Senate, with Price rising to become the first Republican Senate Majority Leader in the history of Georgia.

Other community experience or activities: Roswell Rotary Club

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

We face a real choice in this election between whether or not we continue down the current path which will lead to higher debt, higher taxes, and weak economic growth. Or do we change direction, and put in place pro-growth policies: a budget that puts us on a path to paying off our debt, lower taxes on families and small businesses, and fewer onerous regulations from Washington. Those are the policies I have and will continue to champion to get America back on the right track.”

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in Congress?

Our nation faces tremendous challenges. First and foremost is a still-struggling economy brought on by the threat of higher taxes and irresponsible regulation from Washington. My primary focus is on stopping the tax hikes, eliminating the threat of a looming fiscal cliff, and then getting Washington out of the way of small businesses so they can grow and create jobs.”

Jeff Kazanow

Jeff Kazanow (D)

Occupation: Consultant to Retailers and Manufacturers in Logistics Operations and Technology

Residence: East Cobb

Experience in elective office:  None

Other community experience or activities: Wheaton school board, Princeton Mill Home Owners Association

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

I am a moderate Democrat that seeks to return balance and dialog to a dysfunctional, highly divisive Congress.  In my business life,  I work with all kinds of people and strive to bring consensus.  I will do the same in Congress.  I will work to get the people’s business done.  Compromise is not a dirty word; there is an acceptable middle ground. I will seek to build bridges between the parties and lead the moderates back to doing the work you elected us to perform.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in Congress?

I will focus on activities to rebuild our decaying infrastructure and put America back to work. This will put Americans back to work and ultimately balance the budget. We have lost our focus on America’s greatness.  We are falling behind the rest of the industrial nations in our infrastructure, education, health care, and prosperity.  I will work with Democrats and Republicans to maintain and build our world standing.  Not only can we maintain our economic dominance, but we can expand it even further and I will work to make sure that our economy continues to grow.

Georgia Public Service Commission

Chuck Eaton

Chuck Eaton (R) (I)

Occupation: Public Service Commissioner

Residence: Atlanta

Experience in elective office: Elected to the PSC in 2006

Other community experience or activities: Chuck represented his neighborhood on a citizen group that made recommendations on local zoning, land use, public safety and community issues. In Troup County he served on the Board of Directors for Troup Haven House, a children’s shelter.

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

I worked for the repeal of the sales tax on energy used in manufacturing, which Gov. Nathan Deal said helped bring new jobs to Georgia from Caterpillar and Baxter. As federal mandates by the Obama Administration drive up energy costs, I’ve worked to keep utility rates in Georgia among the lowest and led the PSC’s effort to lower electric rates by 6 percent. I have voted for a diverse mix of energy sources in the state’s energy portfolio, including solar energy projects, but will not allow liberal special interests to force subsidies for any energy source that is not price competitive.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address on the Public Service Commission?

On Nov. 7, 2012, I hope to address Mitt Romney as President Romney, so that Georgia has a partner at the federal level that will work for lower energy costs rather than working to drive up the cost of energy as the current administration is doing. On the Public Service Commission, I am preparing for the next round of cost hearings on Plant Vogtle’s new nuclear reactors to ensure that costs are kept in line. We will continue looking for ways to save Georgia families money on their monthly utility bills and lower rates to attract new jobs to Georgia.

Steve Oppenheimer

Stephen Oppenheimer (D)

Occupation: Retired dentist

Residence: Sandy Springs

Experience in elective office: None.

Other community experience or activitiesFor 30 years I have been involved in leadership in Atlanta, my children’s elementary, middle and high schools, organizations for college students, where I worship & on 2 national boards. My engagement in energy began 8 years ago with the bi-partisan Institute for Analysis of Global Security. I was on the committee to plan a National Energy Security Conference.  I am a Task Force Coordinator for Clean Cities-Atlanta, a Department of Energy program & served on the City of Atlanta’s Metro Atlanta Electric Vehicle Task Force.

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

 My academic background in science provides a foundation for me to understand energy. For over 20 years I operated a small business- my family dental practice. I understand the responsibilities and challenges faced by small business owners and homeowners. For eight years I have worked with bi-partisan groups led by experts on energy and energy security policy nationally and locally, which provide me a background on energy policy.  For 30 years I have held leadership roles in Atlanta and national organizations including building a student center at for Emory students that was completed on schedule and on budget.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address at the Public Service Commission? 

The Public Service Commission is to use its authority and influence to ensure that consumers receive safe, reliable and reasonably priced utility service.  Commissioners should proactively seek best practices around the country and the world to make certain our utilities remain affordable and help Georgia’s economy.  I’ll fight to make sure more of our power is produced right here in Georgia from diversified sources including natural gas, bio-fuels, solar and even wind of the coast. I will promote modern energy generation & management technologies including energy efficiency and smart grid technology.  Great energy expertise exists in Georgia, let’s leverage that!

Brad Ploeger

Brad Ploeger (L)

Occupation:  small business owner

Residence: Grant Park, Atlanta

Experience in elective office: none

Other community experience or activities: Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Atlanta; board of a housing facility for lower income seniors in Midtown Atlanta.

 Why should the voters choose you for this position?

As a homeowner, advocate for affordable housing and small business owner I have seen firsthand how the decisions of the PSC affect ratepayers in Georgia.  When I looked at the PSC it became apparent quite quickly that the Commission has abandoned its job of protecting Georgia ratepayers.  I am running for Public Service Commission to shed light on the Commission and to raise public awareness for their activities.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address on the Public Service Commission?

My primary goal is to return the commission to its primary goal of protecting ratepayers in Georgia.  First and foremost I will work with both my fellow commissioners and the General Assembly to adopt meaningful ethics reform. These reforms include prohibiting contributions from interested parties, an outright ban on lobbyist gifts and full financial transparency.

Georgia House of Representatives

81st District

Scott Holcomb

Scott Holcomb (D) (I)

Occupation: Attorney

Residence: Northlake

Experience in elective office:  State Representative, 2011-2013

Other community experience or activities:  Member of the Henderson Mill Elementary School PTA;  volunteer for veterans and their families; advisor to Northlake Community Alliance;  board member of the Georgia Perimeter College Foundation; board Member to the Georgia Asylum and Immigration Network; Member of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America.

Why should the voters choose you?

My father taught me when I was young that integrity is what you do when no-one else is watching.  I’ve tried to live my life according to that standard.

I work very hard and I try to make decisions that advance both our district and our state.  I listen, and I’m accessible.  I work equally well with Republicans and Democrats, and I’m sought by my colleagues to co-sponsor bi-partisan legislation.

Unlike my opponent, I bring to the table a great deal of valuable, real world experience.  I have served in the Armed Forces for 12 years, prosecuted criminals, practiced law at one of Georgia’s top law firms, taught at Georgia Tech, worked for a growing Georgia business, and volunteered extensively in the community and with veterans and their families.  I also know that Georgia has to be prepared to compete internationally so I am currently enrolled at UGA in its Executive MBA program to deepen my understanding of the challenges we face. These experiences help me to improve legislation at the Capitol.

I have a record of service and achievement, and I would be honored to serve for two more years.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in the Legislature next year?

The first item I’d like the General Assembly to pass is ethics reform.  I’ve long been a public proponent of ethics reform and I’d like to see legislation enacted to ban gifts from lobbyists.  The Speaker of the House supports the idea, so we should be able to hit the ground running on day 1.

Chris Boedeker

Chris Boedeker (R)

Occupation: attorney

Residence: Drew Valley, Brookhaven

Experience in elective office: None

Other community experience or activities: Helped to form the Lilburn Community Improvement District

Why should the voters choose you for this position?

My campaign has focused on speaking with voters across the political spectrum – right, left, and middle — and heard common themes that transcend party politics. Many voters from either party agree the time has come to give parents a choice in what sort of education their children receive. Ethical governance and ethics reform at the local level are other points of unity.

I’m committed to making District 81 a safe haven for our country’s founding principles of limited government and economic prosperity through free market capitalism. I’m also committed to representing this district in a way that citizens of all political stripes can see demonstrable progress in areas where there is common ground.

If you are elected, what is the first thing you hope to address in office?

Ethics reform is an important issue for the voters I have met in House District 81. I believe that we can achieve sustained ethics reform by increasing the accountability of elected officials and lobbyists through effective penalties, and by developing a system for top to bottom transparency. On Day 1, I will support legislation that makes meaningful efforts in the area of ethics reform.

Joe Earle

Joe Earle is Editor-at-Large. He has more than 30-years of experience with daily newspapers, including the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.