Candidate for 9th House District
Name: Clint Smith
How Long have you lived in the district: 37 years
Occupation: Military Veteran, writer, historian
Education: Bachelor’s Degree – Political Science-Georgia State University; Associate Degree – Airway Science-Community College of the Air Force
Political Experience: 8 years in the Georgia House of Representatives, victim of district gerrymandered maps created by Democrat controlled legislature and later affirmed to be unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court. Deputy Whip in the Republican Caucus, Chairman of the Georgia Faith-Based Initiatives Task Force (President George Bush’s policy priority) during Governor Sonny Perdue’s terms as Governor. Active in Georgia Republican Party for 42 years (chairman of Dawson County Republican party 4 years)
Career experience: 32 years in the Georgia National Guard, former management in truck driver leasing, management in the restaurant industry, author of three books, President of the Historical Society of the Georgia National Guard and substitute teacher in Dawson County
Community involvement: Member/Deacon at First Redeemer Baptist Church in Cumming, former Chairman of the Dawson County Library Board, supporter of Whispering Hope Women’s Resource and Pregnancy Center in Cumming.
Why are you running for the 9th House District seat? To provide experienced leadership for North Georgia.
What makes you the best candidate for this position? My 8 years of legislative experience, 32 years of National Guard experience and diverse professional background.
What is your promise to Dawson County constituents? To continue my tradition of honest, conservative representation and addressing issues assertively yet with the lines of communication with the citizens always open. When the community realized that the sole person county commission was outdated, we worked together to craft legislation for a five-person board of commissioners. When the elections process required modernization, I worked with county officials and the citizens to pass a bill that relieved the probate judge’s office of the responsibility and established a separate Dawson County elections superintendent and Board of Elections. I promise to work hard to contribute to the quality of life in Dawson County as evidenced by my track record of local legislation to benefit property owners, senior citizens, farmers and the Dawson County School System.
What are the top three issues you believe the state is currently facing, and what are your views on addressing each? Recovering from the coronavirus pandemic. I was the original sponsor of the zero-based budgeting concept in the Georgia legislature which eventually was enacted whereby each state agency must justify its entire budget request each year (and not expect an automatic rubber stamp for ninety percent of it). The pandemic will force belt-tightening up and down the line and all government officials must work together to prioritize the needs of our citizens moving forward in state expenditures.
Protecting our senior citizens. The Georgia National Guard has taken the lead in screening nursing homes and assisting living homes from the virus. Generally, the legislature should create a safer environment for the elderly living in these facilities by tightening state oversight relative to care, training of staff and solvency of the ownership.Support business and industry by cutting government red tape, taxes and fees (including start up fees) so Georgia can continue as the number one state for doing business. The legislature must continue to address the inadequacy of rural broadband service to customers, including businesses, to bring the benefits of high-speed internet to all regions of Georgia.