Annette Davis Jackson, the Republican candidate for State Senate District 55 recently posted a recap of her thoughts about the upcoming election. According to Ms. Jackson, the time has come for voters in the relevant districts within Gwinnett and DeKalb Counties to vote to “pass the torch”.
From our examination of the records, Ms. Jackson is entirely correct. The Democrat incumbent (Butler) she is challenging has been in office for 17 years, yet we could find no record of any legislation that she has authored that would benefit the people living in District 55 (which includes most of Snellville below Highway 78). And according to reports from previous challengers, the incumbent has stated that she didn’t need Gwinnett County voters- she had all she needed to win in DeKalb County.
Ms. Jackson states, “The key issue in this District 55 race is ’Representation.’ In Gwinnett County, there are a lot of citizens that feel they have not been represented in their concerns, governance and compliance.
As an example, the City of Snellville experienced Senator, Gloria Butler, going behind the backs of the City Council, and partnering with the former Mayor, Kelly Kautz to change the City Charter. (See SB 228, Snellville, City of; make numbers administrative and clerical changes. On March 20, 2015, the Senate Read and Referred this Senate Bill. Gloria Butler was the ONLY author of this bill).
Ms. Jackson doesn’t just “talk the talk”, she “walks the walk”. In less than three months, she has attended more Snellville City Council meetings than her opponent has in 17 years- not simply to campaign, but to learn about residents’ concerns and ideas.
Another Republican candidate running against a Democrat incumbent is Victor Armendariz, who is challenging Representative Hank Johnson for US House District 4. Johnson, whose most noteworthy public statements were his concern about the island of Guam tipping over, and his calling Israeli settlers “termites”.
Both Jackson and Armendariz may be facing uphill battles as much of their respective districts are solidly Democratic. However, poor performance by both incumbents may open the door to both challengers. Tired of being ignored and embarrassed, many traditional Democrat voters are open to crossing party lines. Territories. Armendariz’s statement on his web site shows the dramatic difference between his viewpoint and that of Hank Johnson. Armendariz states, “I am not a politician, not independently wealthy nor am I someone who is looking for accolades to become part of the Washington elite. I am a proud first generation American looking to represent the people of District 4. This district is a place where I was born and raised, a place where I live and work now and a place where my representation can provide a great service to the constituents of this district in the United States House of Representatives.”
Both races are about much more than party politics. Both State Senate District 55 and US Congressional District 4 are currently represented by incumbents who have repeatedly shown a lack of concern about residents of Gwinnett County. It’s time for a change.