Candidates sign up for Jan. 31 races for state House, Senate

December 30, 2022 GMT

ATLANTA (AP) — Three candidates have signed up for a Jan. 31 special election to fill a vacant state Senate seat in southwest Georgia, while a Republican county administrator will run unopposed for an open seat in the state House.

Qualifying closed Friday for the races to fill the two empty legislative positions. Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger scheduled the elections after state Sen. Dean Burke of Bainbridge resigned his District 11 seat to become chief medical officer for the state Department of Community Health.

Republican state Rep. Sam Watson of Moultrie opted to leave the House to run for Burke’s Senate seat. He will face Democrat Mary Weaver-Anderson and Libertarian John Monds, both of Cairo, at the polls next month.

According to Raffensperger’s office, only one candidate signed up to seek Watson’s seat in House District 172. Colquitt County Administrator Chas Cannon qualified to run for the position as a Republican.