Get ready to meet, question your local political candidates


Republicans, Democrats schedule local forums

Republican voters wanting to get a close-up look at the candidates running for numerous offices in the May 24 primary will have six candidate forums to choose from in April.

Due to the large number of people running on Republican tickets, the Fayette County Republican Party has six events featuring different races planned. The Republican forums will be held at 7 p.m. the offices of the Fayette County Republican Party, located at 174 North Glynn Street in Fayetteville. For more information, visit

The Fayette Democratic Committee will have the Meet the Democratic Candidates event during its monthly “Pancakes and Politics” meeting on April 9 at the IHOP restaurant located at 705 North Jeff Davis Drive in Fayetteville. For more information, visit

The wealth of forums to be held at the Fayette Republican Party headquarters will begin on April 12 with candidates for the District 72 House seat. Candidates include attorney James Clifton, Realtor Josh Bonner and attorney Lisa Inagawa.

As with all the forums, candidates will respond to audience questions.

Coming April 19 will be a forum for the District 1, District 2 and at-large seats on the Fayette County Commission.

District 1 candidates include incumbent Commissioner David Barlow and former commissioner and attorney Eric Maxwell.

District 2 candidates include incumbent Randy Ognio, self-employed marketer Maggie Laton and former commissioner and design engineer Lee Hearn.

At-large candidates include incumbent Charles Oddo, former Fayetteville Mayor Greg Clifton, former Peachtree City Mayor Don Haddix, former Commissioner Allen McCarty and accountant Emery McHugh, III.

The April 21 forum will feature candidates for sheriff, district attorney, two Fayette County Superior Court seats and one Fayette County Magistrate Judge seat.

Candidates for sheriff include Republican incumbent Barry Babb and Republican challenger and Fayetteville Police detective Christopher Stevers.

Candidates for district attorney, all Republicans, includes attorney Cindy Manning, Assistant District Attorney Ben Coker and attorney Rudjard M. Hayes.

Candidates for Superior Court Judge Mack Crawford’s seat include Crawford and attorney Catherine Sanderson.

Candidates for Superior Court Judge Tommy Hankinson’s seat include Hankinson and current Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard.

Candidates for the Fayette County Magistrate Judge seat include incumbent Loyd Black and attorney Christy Dunkelberger.

Candidates for Fayette County District Attorney includes attorney Cindy Manning, Assistant District Attorney Ben Coker and attorney Rudjard M. Hayes.

The April 25 forum will feature candidates for the Fayette County Board of Education.

District 3 candidates include incumbent Marion Key and financial advisor Scott Hollowell.

At-large candidates include software consultant Brian Anderson and property manager Susan Stopford.

The April 26 forum will include candidates for the 3rd U.S. Congressional District seat.

Candidates include retired Master Sergeant Sam Anders, small business owner Chip Flanegan, businessman Jim Pace, state Sen. Mike Crane, educator Rod Thomas, West Point Mayor Drew Ferguson and business owner Richard Mix.

The Fayette Chamber of Commerce recently announced that it will partner with the Fayette County Democratic Committee, the Fayette County Issues Tea Party, the Fayette County Republican Party, the NAACP Fayette County Chapter and the Rotary Club of Peachtree City to help Fayette County residents learn about the local candidates through forums and information sharing.