Sunday 21 December 2014

Carter grandson to run for governor

Published 07/11/2013 | 15:11

Jason Carter, grandson of former President Jimmy Carter, plans to run for Governor of Georgia (AP).
Jason Carter, grandson of former President Jimmy Carter, plans to run for Governor of Georgia (AP).

Jason Carter, the grandson of former President Jimmy Carter and a state politician, plans to run for governor next year in Georgia, where the elder Carter governed before becoming president.

While Democrats once dominated state politics, things have changed dramatically since Jimmy Carter served as governor. The Republicans have been the party in power since 2002 when Georgia elected its first Republican governor since the 1800s.

The state has voted for every Republican presidential nominee since 2000, although President Barack Obama garnered 47% of voters in 2008. Last year, Mr Obama received 45.5% of the vote.

Jason Carter's decision energised Democrats coming off a 2010 election in which the Republican party claimed every statewide office.

Mr Carter is clearly betting changing demographics in the state could be enough to carry him to the governor's mansion next year.

Mr Carter, 38, was first elected to the Georgia Senate from Atlanta in May 2010 and has been at the forefront among Democrats on issues like education.

A big question will be how his grandfather will factor into the campaign. The 89-year-old former president remains active in various international issues.

When the younger Carter first ran for office, his grandfather didn't start campaigning until a few days before the election. At the time, Jason Carter said he wanted to prove that he could do the hard work on his own and didn't want to be "trading on my family name."

Jimmy Carter served two terms in the Georgia Senate before running for governor. Although Jimmy Carter lost his first bid in 1966, he won four years later.

He was elected president in 1976, defeating President Gerald Ford before losing to Ronald Reagan in 1980.

AP

Press Association

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