10th Congressional District Roundup

April 16, 2014 15:30 pm

by Jon Richards · 1 comment

Georgia’s 10th Congressional District runs from Gwinnett County on the west all the way to the South Carolina border on the east. Its current representative, Paul Broun, is doing his best to get elected to the Senate, leaving an open seat that’s being contested by no fewer than seven candidates. With first quarter fundraising numbers in hand, let’s take a look at the candidates and see where they stand.

Mike Collins: Son of former congressman Mac Collins, Mike Collins has not hesitated to bring his dad with him on the trail. He also raised awareness of his campaign by putting together a campaign video parodying Jean Claude Van Damme’s Volvo commercial. In the first quarter, he came in third in contributions, with just over $61,000 contributed, and a whopping $214,097 cash on hand. Of course, he also made the largest loan to his campaign, at $150,000. Depending on how much of that loan he’s willing to turn into a contribution, he can certainly get the word out on his campaign. He definitely has a good chance of being in the runoff that is likely to occur in July.

Donna Sheldon: As the former chair of the Georgia House Majority Caucus, Donna Sheldon has a lot of name ID, and likely the support of many of those serving under the Gold Dome. She has raised more in contributions than any other of the candidates in the race at $434,318. Her first quarter haul of $82,282 gives her $128,398 cash on hand, second only to Collins. Once you take out the $30,000 loan she gave her campaign, she has more money than the others. She has a reasonable opportunity to make it to the runoff.

Stephen Simpson: Colonel Simpson brought in $33,595 in the first quarter, and has $67,184 cash on hand. However he loaned his campaign $52,700, and his report shows the campaign having over $80,000 in debt. Simpson ran and lost to Broun in 2012, and it’s unclear if voters will be willing to hand him a victory in 2014.

Jody Hice: Hice brought in the most cash in the first quarter, with $88,660 raised. He also spent the most during the quarter at just over $124,000, leaving him with $47,023 cash on hand. He is the only major candidate who has not had to make a personal loan to fund his campaign. Hice got into a runoff with Rob Woodall in 2010, before the district lines were redrawn. I fully expect him to make one of the runoff slots this year.

Gary Gerrard: The Athens lawyer netted $26,744 in the first quarter and had $21,734 cash on hand at the end of March. With a personal loan to his campaign of $40,000, his campaign is technically upside down. Gerrard has promised not to take a congressional salary until the country has a balanced budget.

Mitchell Swan: Swan is a Marine Corps Colonel and a late entrant to the race, announcing his candidacy this year. As a result, the $11,531 he’s raised in the first quarter is also all he has raised for the race. Having spent most of that, he’s left with $1,258 cash on hand.

Brian Slowinski: I couldn’t find any campaign disclosures for this TEA party candidate on the FEC website. Slowinski is known for his videos and his children dressed in fluorescent green campaign shirts at campaign events.

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northside101 April 16, 2014 at 4:51 pm

The 10th District presents a challenge in that there is no one dominating voting county in the district, no county where say 35 or 40 percent of the vote comes from. To the extent there is any resemblance of a dominating county in the 10th, it would be Walton, which has outvoted the other counties in the districts in past primaries. Under the CD 10 current lines, Walton accounted for 19 percent of the district’s total votes in the 2010 GOP primary for governor, 17 percent in the March 2012 GOP presidential primary and 16 percent in Broun’s 2012 primary with Stephen Simpson. Second place has rotated among the counties—Barrow County was second in the 2010 primary for governor,, but the Gwinnett part of the district was second in the 2012 presidential primary and Oconee was second in the July 2012 Broun/Simpson primary. In any event, the bulk of the CD 10 population is west of Hwy 441 that runs through Athens, Madison, Eatonton and Milledgeville.

The district also includes Lake Oconee (Reynolds Plantation in Greene County, midway between Atlanta and Augusta on I-20), a good fundraising area for candidates, even though with relatively few votes in the grand scheme of things.