Announcement opens race for challengers John Kennedy and Spencer Price

Last updated: February 06. 2014 4:03PM - 1228 Views
By - lstanford@civitasmedia.com

Cecil Staton
Cecil Staton
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After serving in the Georgia General Assembly for the past 10 years, State Senator Cecil Staton has announced he will not seek re-election later this year. Staton, a Republican from Macon who represents the 18th Senate District, which includes Crawford, Monroe, Peach and Upson counties and portions of Bibb and Houston counties, made the announcement on February 4, 2014.

“It has truly been one of greatest honors of my life to serve the people of the 18th Senate District over the past ten years,” said Sen. Staton in a press release. “Public service is a high calling, and one I have never taken lightly. I am incredibly thankful for the continued support of my constituents who have entrusted me to represent their values under the Gold Dome. Central Georgia is my home, and I will always work to strengthen the region’s reputation as one of the state’s best places to live, work and raise a family.

“I have to say a special word of thanks to my wife Catherine, and sons Trey and William,” Staton commented. “They have sacrificed much for my ten years of service. Without their love and support I could never have done this. While most never understand the costs of service and leadership, they certainly do. I love them with all my heart and thank them for supporting my service.”

Sen. Staton has served as vice-chairman of the Senate Republican Caucus and currently serves as Majority Whip, a position he has held for four of his ten years in the Senate. The Majority Whip is the third highest-ranking leadership position in the Senate. Sen. Staton is a member of the Appropriations, Banking and Financial Institutions, Higher Education and the Reapportionment and Redistricting committees. Additionally, he serves as a member on the Rules, Assignments and the Regulated Industries committees. He currently serves as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Higher Education, appropriating nearly $2 billion dollars, or 11 percent of the state’s budget, annually for higher education across Georgia.

Open race

The announcement by Sen. Staton not to seek re-election opens up the field for those seeking to fill his position. Already having announced their intentions to seek the District 18 Republican nomination are Thomaston physician Dr. Spencer Price and Macon attorney John F. Kennedy.

Kennedy thanked Staton for his service in a press release Wednesday.

“Serving in public office requires a large commitment of time and energy, and I want to thank Cecil Staton for his service and wish him the best in the future.”

“I am running because the people of Middle Georgia need an honest, hardworking leader in the State Senate who will provide the authentic, enthusiastic, conservative leadership they deserve. I am committed to working hard for our community, being there for you and ensuring that our interests and values are being protected.”

Price, who came within 200 votes of defeating Staton for the Republican nomination in 2012, said Staton’s announcement doesn’t change a thing.

“Cecil Staton’s retirement does not change my campaign in any way. I will continue to work hard throughout the 18th state senate district to convey my message and to earn the voters’ trust and support,” Price said. “I will continue to visit all parts of the district, meet with people in person, talk with them face to face, and learn their issues and concerns and, next year, I will take those issues and concerns with me to our state legislature.”

Larry Stanford may be reached at 706-647-5414 or on Twitter @LarryStanford7.

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