Any day now, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp will appoint a replacement for U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, who is stepping down at the end of this year. The appointment will run through next year when Georgians will elect someone to serve the final two years of Isakson’s term.
The deadline passed Monday for those who wish to be considered for the appointment. This is a good thing, because the list was already approaching more than 200 applicants.
That’s more than 200 resumes from doctors, lawyers, CEOs, CFOs, COOs and business owners. There are pilots, stewardesses, ministers and cashiers. There’s even a resume from an inmate at a state prison.
By far, the longest resumes come from those in education. One college educator submitted a 12-page vitae – all single spaced. Another entered 10 pages with footnotes. Still another educator sent the governor 37 pages listing his qualifications.
Former 6th District Congressman Tom Price even applied for the position — and yes, his resume includes the one year he spent as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services under Donald Trump.
You’ve got to feel for the governor. Regardless of your political affiliation, Brian Kemp never did anything to deserve this.
If I could put a bug in the governor’s ear, I would draw his attention to one Jack Hilton.
His resume stood out:
“Take a chance, step outside your comfort zone, and appoint me, Jack Hilton, Libertarian.
“As I’m currently unemployed, I already have experience at doing nothing, which appears to be a prerequisite for being a politician from either of the two major parties.”
One thing is for certain. Jack has no chance this go-around. Not because he’s not qualified, but because he’s a Libertarian, and we all know Kemp will appoint a Republican.
Ever since William Few and James Gunn were elected in 1789, Georgia has had 66 U.S. senators. The majority – 49 – were Democrats, and six have been Republicans. The others belonged to short-lived and long-forgotten parties.
Of the 66 senators, 65 were men. One was a women, and she served only for 24 hours back in 1922.
Kemp’s list of applicants includes a good share of women, many of them enormously qualified.
I love Georgia. I think it has a long and proud history in many facets of American history. One thing it has trouble shaking, though, is a reputation for the “Good Ole Boys Network,” the cigar-chomping, whiskey-belching, back room denizens of power politics.
There are currently 25 women serving in the U.S. Senate, and Kemp could make a strong statement by appointing a Georgian to join them.
Of the many qualified applicants, the governor may want to look at someone like Jan Jones, the Milton resident who has served as the second-highest ranking leader in the Georgia House since 2009 — the highest ranking woman to ever serve in the Georgia General Assembly.
When it comes to party, Jones is certainly in step with our new Republican governor — and with the national GOP, for that matter. She touts her fight for the rule of law on illegal immigration and the protection of Second Amendment rights for individuals.
Yet, there are cases where Jones has shown her individuality by championing strong sexual harassment policies to protect all who work under the Gold Dome. She was also led the charge to incentivize college students to challenge themselves with STEM classes.
Finally, Jones has her roots in Georgia, growing up in Warner Robins with her family on her father’s military salary. It’s hard to kill those kind of roots, the kind nurtured with 16 years in state government dealing daily with legislation tailored to her home.
It might not hurt either for North Fulton to have an ear in Washington.
Whoever the governor appoints, I hope he does the state proud.