Shaw Blackmon will head to the state Capitol in Atlanta in January, beating fellow Republican Larry Walker III to represent part of Houston County in the state House.
Blackmon took 2,520 of the total 4,425 votes, nearly 57 percent, to Walker’s 1,905 votes, 43 percent.
House District 146 covers a section of Houston County that includes parts of Warner Robins, Bonaire, Kathleen and Perry.
It is Blackmon’s first elected office, though he has been a member of the Technical College System of Georgia’s board of directors, among other appointments.
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During the campaign, both Shaw and Walker stood on broadly center-right platforms and promised to look after Robins Air Force Base.
Shaw, who owns a bank supply business, emphasized making government “simpler,” with less red tape.
Walker, an insurance agency owner, said he wanted both Georgia and Houston County to be known as good places to do business.
“We worked hard, we ran a good, clean, hard campaign ... Basically the Warner Robins Perry divide, I couldn’t overcome it,” said Walker, who is from the south end of the district.
It was a pricey race. Each man reported raising about $100,000 through the first week in August.
Blackmon will complete the roughly one year remaining in the term of former House Majority Leader Larry O’Neal, R-Bonaire. O’Neal left the Legislature this year to take a judgeship at the Georgia Tax Tribunal.
Issues on the legislative agenda will include medical marijuana and perhaps teacher pay, among other things. House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, has said he will file a bill to reassure unwilling clergy members that they need not perform same-sex wedding ceremonies.
To contact writer Maggie Lee, e-mail email@example.com