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Who is in the race to replace Tom Price in Georgia’s 6th District

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, center, accompanied by his wife Betty, and Vice President Mike Pence, signs an official document during a swearing in ceremony, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in the in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, center, accompanied by his wife Betty, and Vice President Mike Pence, signs an official document during a swearing in ceremony, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in the in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Candidates in the race to represent former U.S. Rep. Tom Price’s suburban Atlanta district begin qualifying for office on Monday, and the contest is shaping up to be an early test of Donald Trump’s popularity.

With Price’s confirmation by the U.S. Senate as Trump’s health secretary, the race to fill his 6th District seat is one of the first congressional elections since the presidential vote – and the field of candidates range from liberal Democrats running against the new president to conservatives who promise to be his biggest ally.

 



 

Nationally, the race will be cast as an early test of Trump’s popularity in an establishment-friendly district that never really warmed up to him during the presidential campaign. And locally, the victor will represent a wealthy swath of north Atlanta’s suburbs, from east Cobb County to north DeKalb County, that has been a proven springboard to higher office.

Qualifying for the seat begins Monday and ends Wednesday. The vote will be held on April 18 and a runoff – all but guaranteed with this crowded field – is set for June 20. All will be on the same ballot regardless of party affiliation.

Below is your list of candidates in the running:

REPUBLICANS

David Abroms: A business executive and former Congressional aide.

Status: He’s in, and qualified Tuesday.

Mohammad Ali Bhuiyan: A Cobb County economist who led an aborted effort to hold a Nobel peace summit in Atlanta, Bhuiyan has advertised himself as potentially the first Republican Muslim member of the U.S. House — and an enemy to “out of control” government spending.

Status: He’s in, and he formally qualified for the seat.

Former Johns Creek Councilman Bob Gray: The business executive is running as a “willing partner” with Trump and has hired several of the president’s one-time Georgia field operatives to run his campaign.

Status: He’s in.

GOP candidate for U.S. Sen. Karen Handel concedes her U.S. Senate race with her husband Steve beside her at the end of an election-night watch party last week in Roswell. AP/Phil Skinner

GOP candidate for U.S. Sen. Karen Handel and her husband Steve. AP/Phil Skinner

Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel: As a former chair of the Fulton County commission, she has deep roots in north Fulton County and remains a powerbroker in the area. She also enjoys high name recognition throughout the district, thanks in part to her 2010 campaign for governor and 2014 campaign for the U.S. Senate.

Status: She’s in – and qualified on Wednesday.

Keith Grawert. A U.S. Air Force pilot and Dunwoody resident who wants to “return public service to Washington.”

Status: He’s in, and qualified on Monday.

Former State Sen. Judson Hill: The first Republican to announce a bid, Hill jumped in shortly after Price was nominated. Almost all of Hill’s Senate territory – which stretches from Cobb County to Sandy Springs – is in Price’s district. And as the only high-profile Cobb candidate, he hopes to unite the county’s voters behind him.

Status: He’s already scheduled two fundraisers, including one co-hosted by GOP uber-lobbyist Brad Alexander.

Amy Kremer: A Republican activist who qualified just before the deadline on Wednesday.

Status: She’s in.

Donald Trump gets a hug from Bruce Levell. AJC/Curtis Compton.

Donald Trump gets a hug from Bruce LeVell. AJC/Curtis Compton.

Bruce LeVell. As the head of Trump’s diversity coalition, the Dunwoody jeweler might have the biggest claim of any potential candidates to family’s endorsement. LeVell once led the Gwinnett GOP and served on MARTA’s board for five years, and he has said he wouldn’t accept money from “special interests” and would commit to serving only four terms – as long as Trump was in office.

Status: He’s in, and qualified Tuesday.

William Llop: A Sandy Springs accountant who said he will run as a “financial expert” who can help reduce the federal debt.

Status: He’s in.

Former state Sen. Dan Moody: The one-time Roswell politician is also a U.S. Army veteran who served on the state Department of Transportation board. If he jumps in the race – he has already filled out preliminary paperwork – he is likely to focus on a support for term limits. He’s also expected to dig deep in his wallet to finance his own campaign.

Former state Sen. Dan Moody. File.

Former state Sen. Dan Moody. File.

Status: He’s in.

Kurt Wilson: A Roswell small business owner who appears ready to challenge his rivals to sign a term-limit pledge that includes a promise that he and his family members will never lobby Congress for the rest of their lives.

Status: He’s in and qualified on Tuesday.

DEMOCRATS

Ragin Edwards: The east Cobb resident, a sales manager, is running on a platform of being the “voice for the unheard.”

Status: She’s in, and qualified on Tuesday.

Richard Keatley: A college professor from Tucker and U.S. Navy veteran pledges to fight to make college debt-free.

Status: He’s in, and qualified for office on Tuesday.

Democrat Jon Ossoff.

Democrat Jon Ossoff.

Jon Ossoff: The 29-year-old small business owner – he runs a firm specializing in anti-corruption investigations – once worked as a congressional aide and has the endorsements of Reps. John Lewis and Hank Johnson as well as some other party leaders.

Status: He’s in, and qualified on Monday. He told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution he’s lined up more than $250,000 in financial commitments from supporters.

Rebecca Quigg: The physician is making the preservation of the Affordable Care Act the centerpiece of her campaign.

Status: She’s in, and qualified for office on Tuesday.

Ron Slotin

Ron Slotin

Former state Sen. Ron Slotin: A former publisher of Atlanta Jewish Life, Slotin represented a north Atlanta Senate district until 1996, when he lost a bid to oust Rep. Cynthia McKinney. He is running as a “progressive” who can fight Trump’s policies.

Status: He’s in and qualified on Monday.

INDEPENDENTS

Alexander Hernandez: A political newcomer, Hernandez is running as an independent on a platform of boosting Medicare spending, supporting new investments in infrastructure and backing term limits.

Status: He’s in and he qualified on Monday.

Andre Pollard: A Milton computer systems engineer who is running on a tech-friendly platform.

Status: He’s in and qualified on Wednesday.

Who is not running after publicly flirting with a bid:

State Rep. Betty Price: Tom Price’s wife would have tremendous name recognition in the district, and in November she won another term as a state legislator representing a Roswell-based area. She said Wednesday she wasn’t seeking his seat.

Status: She said Wednesday she was not running.

Former state Rep. Sally Harrell: The ex-lawmaker – she represented a DeKalb district from 1999-2005 – had the backing of several local Democrats before deciding against a run.

Status: She is out after flirting with a bid for months.


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