Politics & Government

Political Notebook: Macon Republican eyes statewide prize

Though it’s more than two years away, Macon Republican state Sen. Allen Peake said he’s considering a run for lieutenant governor, the second-highest office in Georgia’s political land.

“All I’m concerned about is making sure I win my next re-election (to the state House) in 2016. And then assuming I win in 2016, we’ll give a good strong look at what the options may be in 2018” for a lieutenant governor run, Peake said.

The lieutenant governor is elected statewide and runs the state Senate, making that person one of the key power brokers under the Gold Dome in Atlanta.

In the meantime, Peake will continue as the House’s head evangelist for medical cannabis access in Georgia. This year, he authored a successful bill that decriminalized small amounts of a liquid derived from cannabis for people who have a doctor’s orders. Next year, he wants a law that would allow an in-state grow of cannabis from which such medicine is made.

He was also one of the main drivers of the bill that set up the Macon-Bibb consolidation referendum in 2012.

Peake has represented north Bibb since 2007.

ENDORSEMENT IN THE 146 RACE

A former state House District 146 candidate endorsed businessman Shaw Blackmon weeks before Blackmon heads toward an August runoff for the seat, according to a release.

Former District Attorney Kelly Burke announced he was endorsing Blackmon, who will face Larry Walker III in an Aug. 11 special election runoff. Burke praised Blackmon’s service to the community, the release said.

Burke finished third in the July 14 election for the district that covers a part of Houston County.

“Shaw’s long record of supporting the Republican cause of limited government, lower taxes and personal liberty were deciding factors for me in this endorsement,” Burke said in the release. “As was clear from my campaign, I fiercely believe in limited government and I’m confident Shaw Blackmon is the candidate that will carry the torch of conservatism and I will be voting for him Aug. 11.”

The winner will complete the roughly 15 months remaining in the term of former House Majority Leader Larry O’Neal, R-Bonaire. O’Neal retired from the Legislature this year to take a judgeship at the Georgia Tax Tribunal.

DEAL APPOINTS MIDSTATE RESIDENTS

Gov. Nathan Deal has appointed 28 people from across the state to various boards. Several of them are from the midstate.

Here’s a look at the new appointees and the boards they will serve on:

Joe Sam Robinson, REACH Scholarship Board. Robinson is president of the Georgia Neurosurgical Institute. He and his wife, Betsy, have two children. They live in Macon.

Jay Sanders, Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (reappointment). Sanders is the deputy director of the Governor’s Office of Transition, Support and Reentry. He and his wife, Cathy, have two children. They live in Forsyth.

Karen Warren Rosas, Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage & Family Therapists. Rosas works for the Juvenile Court of Macon-Bibb County, where she manages the Judicial Citizen Review Program. She and her husband, Julio, have two daughters. They reside in Macon.

Marvin W. Alston, Sandersville School Building Authority. Alston retired as a managing director at Bellsouth Telecommunications. He and his wife, Joanna, have three children and three grandchildren. They reside in Sandersville.

Frank Simmons, Sandersville School Building Authority. Simmons is on the Washington County Commission. He and his wife, Sara, reside in Sandersville.

Felix William Veal, Jr., Sandersville School Building Authority. Veal retired from the Thiele Kaolin Co. as a project engineer and the director of Regulatory Affairs. He and his wife, Frances, have two children and one grandchild. They reside in Sandersville.

Telegraph staff writers Stanley Dunlap, Maggie Lee and Oby Brown contributed to this report.

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