Georgia 14th: Bill Hembree joins US House race

Republican Bill Hembree

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Republican Bill Hembree joined the growing field competing for an open U.S. House seat on Thursday with hopes that his background in the Legislature and support for President Donald Trump helps him emerge from a crowded pack.

The former state legislator is one of a half-dozen Republicans competing to succeed U.S. Rep. Tom Graves in one of the most conservative House districts in the nation. Graves, the senior-most Republican in Georgia's delegation, announced late last year he wasn't running for another term.

“I am excited about the changes happening in our country under President Trump’s leadership, and I will serve as a strong conservative voice for Georgia and a valuable contributor to that change,” said Hembree, who served two stints in the Georgia House before losing a close race to state Sen. Mike Dugan in 2014.

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His rivals in the northwest Georgia seat include John Cowan, a Rome neurosurgeon; Clayton Fuller, a former prosecutor; and state Rep. Kevin Cooke of Carrollton.

Two other contenders recently switched from other U.S. House contests to run for the seat: Ben Bullock, a military veteran, and Marjorie Taylor Greene, a construction executive.

Several Democrats are also eyeing the race for the solidly-conservative seat, which Graves won with roughly three-quarters of the vote in 2018.

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