He’s not the only self-styled “outsider” in the ring, nor is he the only wealthy businessman or political newcomer. But David Abroms, one of 18 contenders in Georgia’s 6th District race, said he will pump $250,000 of his own fortune into his campaign to try to rise above the pack.
The 33-year-old Birmingham native’s message: “People are hungry for something new, for a new generation of leaders. Some of these politicians who are running, it’s the same-old, same-old stuff. We need a new generation of conservatives.”
He and the other lesser-known candidates in the race face long odds ahead of the April 18 special election to replace Rep. Tom Price. The top two finishers – regardless of party – will square off in a June 20 runoff.
The race’s top-tier candidates are placing their own bets, already ponying up money for TV spots, campaign talent and digital advertising. Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republicans Karen Handel, Dan Moody, Judson Hill, Bruce LeVell and Bob Gray are all circling each other eyeing one of those two spots.
Abroms wants to join the pack. A certified public accountant, he founded an Atlanta-based company in 2011 that converts vehicles to run on natural gas. Six years later, he’s winding down the business and pumping some of the proceeds into his bid for public office.
“I achieved financial success, and it taught me a lot about working together and what I can do when I put my heart and soul into something,” said Abroms. “It’s not always about fighting or one-upping your opponent. I think you can stick by your principles and still have a meaningful discussion.”
In a solidly-Republican district that only supported Trump by a whisker in November, Abroms said he’d be willing to defy Trump. He doesn’t back his now-sidelined immigration ban, and he said he would vote to “secure the border” while stopping short of endorsing Trump’s plan for a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico.
“I’m running for the people of the Sixth District. Trump is not going to be my boss and neither is Speaker Ryan,” he said. “I don’t have to be doing this. I’m 33 years old and I’ve been extremely blessed. But I’m doing this for the right reasons. I’m not worried about political backlash for standing up for my beliefs.”