Politics & Government

Peake to seek state House majority leader post

ATLANTA -- State Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, announced Thursday his plans to run for a post that would make him the third-ranking leader in the state House of Representatives.

In an e-mail to Republican colleagues in the House, Peake said he would be resigning his majority caucus secretary/treasurer position and seek to become the new majority leader.

State Rep. Jon Burns, R-Newington, chairman of the House Game, Fish and Parks Committee, also has announced to the caucus that he will run for the post.

Peake praised state Rep. Larry O’Neal, R-Bonaire, the current majority leader, who said this week he would be resigning his seat and caucus position at the end of the month to take a judgeship.

“We owe a tremendous amount of gratitude to Larry for his years of service to our caucus and our state, and I personally am grateful for his friendship, wisdom, counsel and guidance to me,” Peake said in the email.

The majority leader job entails crafting, then passing, party priorities in a sometimes unruly GOP caucus.

Peake outlined several points in his email, including his skill set to best serve the caucus. He said his track record has shown he can get tough legislation passed, raise money for himself and for the caucus, and defend positions in public forums.

“The Majority Leader should help craft a policy vision for our members that we can all rally around and support, to move forward an agenda that is in line with our core Republican values,” he said.

Peake also said the majority leader should be prepared to fight for the caucus when attacked by Democrats and other “outside factions.”

Besides Peake and Burns, more candidates may join the race. The House GOP caucus plans a vote May 11.

No candidate has yet to announce a run for O’Neal’s House District 146 seat.