Two Democrats, one of them a Sandy Springs resident, announced runs for Tom Price’s potentially open seat in Congress on Dec. 7.
Josh McLaurin and Ron Slotin join Republican state Sen. Judson Hill as the only announced candidates so far for the Sixth Congressional District seat, which includes parts of Brookhaven, Dunwoody and Sandy Springs.
Slotin, a former state senator in the 1990s, lives and works in Sandy Springs in marketing for the staffing firmer BrightWell Talent Solutions. He said he’s running to “improve the quality of life for people in the district,” including traffic, schools and environmental protection. In a press release, he used the campaign slogan, “Votin’ for Slotin–Fiscally Smart and Socially Progressive.”
“On the national front, we need a progressive voice in Washington who will fight to protect the progress we have made on many issues, including a woman’s right to choose; affordable healthcare coverage, including covering pre-existing conditions; protection of Social Security; and care for our growing number of senior citizens and marriage equality,” Slotin said in the release. “I will work to bring people together.”
McLaurin is a Marietta native who now lives in Roswell. He was in the news two years ago for a successful legal battle expanding the right to film court proceedings, as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and others reported. He said he recently worked as an attorney in New York City with the firm Holland & Knight, but transferred to metro Atlanta in October and left the firm last month with an eye on entering public service.
McLaurin said that he is running to improve politics in the wake of the nasty presidential election won by Donald Trump.
“The main message is that politics should be both inspirational and civil,” McLaurin said. “It’s a campaign about politics itself…not a fight with another team over which culture should dominate the other.”
In terms of policies, McLaurin citied campaign finance reform and protecting civil rights that he fears Trump may roll back after recent comments on stripping the citizenship of flag-burners. Regarding the future of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, McLaurin said it would be a “moral tragedy” to revoke coverage, but if Republicans can create a replacement that keeps people insured affordably, “I applaud that.”
McLaurin said he has never run for or held an elected office before and that he has heard “radio silence” from the state Democratic Party, but hopes his candidacy will mobilize Democrats.
Among many other possible candidates is Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul, a Republican. At the Dec. 6 Sandy Springs City Council meeting, Paul declined to comment about whether he is considering a run for Price’s seat or other higher office.
Price has been nominated as president-elect Donald Trump’s secretary of Health and Human Services, setting off a potential string of political dominoes to replace him. His nomination still must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate, and he has not yet resigned his Congressional office.