ATLANTA, Ga. (WSB-TV) — After months of speculation, state Sen. Jason Carter, the grandson of former president Jimmy Carter, has told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution he is running for governor.
The 38-year-old Democrat said Georgia cannot wait, because the education system is on the brink.
“I wouldn’t be getting in this race if I didn’t think I was going to win. I’m still mad that I finished second in my law school class. I’m not in this to finish second,” Carter said.
In a Republican state like Georgia, Carter faces an uphill battle in fundraising. Carter is counting on a bruising Republican primary.
Incumbent Gov. Nathan Deal has two primary challengers for 2014. Carter could also get a boost because Democrat Michelle Nunn, the daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn, is the front-runner in the U.S. Senate race.
“I think there will be a lot of nostalgia for those of us who covered politics in Georgia for a long time,” political analyst Bill Crane said.
The younger Carter said partisan folks may have opinions about his grandfather’s presidency, but he said his campaign will be about the future, not his family.
“It’s a brand in Georgia with staying power and cache, but it’s also a brand that connotes, in a lot of people’s minds, liberalism and a failed presidency,” Crane said.
Sources said former state Sen. Connie Stokes, a Democrat who has already announced she’s running for governor, will step aside and run for Lt. governor instead.
Carter said he will not step down from the state Senate while he campaigns for governor.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this story