Runoff election in HD 68 today

Two Republicans, Dustin Hightower and Alan Martinez, face voters in Carroll and Douglas counties today, in the house district formerly held by Tim Bearden. As of the end of early voting on December 30, 2011, fewer than .4 percent of the 31,000 voters had voted in Carroll County.

According to the Times-Georgian

Martinez, a local business owner, has cited his personal business and finance experience, along with his own family’s roots and participation in the county to backup his candidacy.

“The core of our message is that we have two Republican candidates,” he said last month. “I have 20 years experience in business and finance, I’m a family man who is raising a family. All my kids go to county schools, and we attend church here. I’m [also] the only candidate who will live in the new district when the new lines go into effect next year.”

Martinez said that his platform consists of changing public education funding to support more equalization grants for the less-than-wealthy school systems, like Carroll County Schools. He added that if elected he plans to support tax reform and more stringent requirements for scrap dealers.

The Douglas County Sentinel writes

Hightower, a Carrollton attorney, said his campaign is staying “completely positive” and “focused on the issues.”

Hightower has recently received several endorsements including those from former candidate James Camp, Carroll County Commissioner Kevin Jackson and the GeorgiaCarry.Org group.

Jackson said Friday he is endorsing Hightower because he believes Hightower will work to get the Whitesburg area back into House District 68, instead of it going into District 70 under the proposed redistricted map. District 70 now includes only parts of Coweta and Heard counties.

Camp said he believes Hightower’s “knowledge of local issues, states’ rights issues and the draconian policies of overbearing federal bureaucracies” make him the best candidate to protect citizens’ rights.

Jerry Henry, executive director of GeorgiaCarry.Org, said his group’s board of directors voted to give its endorsement to Hightower.

“We’re really excited about the GeorgiaCarry endorsement,” Hightower said. “They do a lot of research on the background of candidates who will stand strong on the Second Amendment.”

Hightower said he’s getting a lot of questions about two things, jobs and education.

Either way, two things are clear: today’s weather probably won’t help turnout any more than the date of the election is, and a Republican will continue to represent House District 68.

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