Local attorney and former Muscogee County Republican Party Chairman Josh McKoon will announce Tuesday he is seeking the Georgia Senate seat being vacated by Seth Harp.
McKoon had flirted with the idea of running for Georgia Secretary of State, but changed plans when the District 29 seat opened.
“Being a in the state Senate gives me the opportunity to address a lot of issues -- education, infrastructure and transportation,” McKoon said. “And I don’t have to give up the issue that interested me most about the Secretary of State’s office. In the Senate, I can still work to tighten up and clean up the election process.”
The seat is open because Harp is running for Georgia Insurance Commissioner in the Republican Primary. Harp, who has served nine years in the Senate, will retain his seat in the 2010 General Assembly session.
There are no other announced candidates for the Senate seat, but there is plenty of time for Republican and Democratic opposition to surface. Qualifying for the party primaries will be held in April. The 2010 primary election is July 20. The General Election is Nov. 2.
McKoon has been planning the Senate campaign since Harp announced his plans in March.
On June 30, McKoon will file his first mandated campaign disclosure form.
“I expect we will make a good impression,” he said. “We have support from a lot of different areas and we have substantial support.”
McKoon is a 2001 graduate of Furman University and 2003 graduate of the University of Alabama law school. He practices law with his father, Jim McKoon, in the firm McKoon & Associates. The firm has offices in Phenix City and Columbus.
McKoon’s announcement comes the day after he successfully represented David Rothschild II in a Georgia Supreme Court appeal that claimed residents were promised a park in the 1999 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax campaign for a new Columbus library. Two lower courts ruled that the plaintiffs did not have standing to file the complaint. The Supreme Court ruled they did.
“Whether it helps me or hurts me, I will leave that for the people to decide,” McKoon said before the ruling came down. “I thought it was the right thing to do, and that is generally the way I operate.”
McKoon’s official announcement will be made at 10 a.m. on the plaza level of the Columbus Government Center downtown. He will make stops at 2 p.m. in Hamilton and 4 p.m. in LaGrange.
Senate District 29 includes northern Muscogee County, southern Troup County and all of Harris and Meriwether counties.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity for public service,” McKoon said.