People lined up for Thursday early voting outside The Gwinnett County Voter Registrations and Elections Office in Lawrenceville on Thursday, October 18, 2018. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

Election to replace Meadows in Georgia House goes to a runoff

A six-way race to fill the North Georgia state House seat previously held by Rep. John Meadows is heading for a runoff. 

The special election Tuesday was required after Meadows, who was chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee, died in November.

Republican Jesse Vaughn, an attorney, will face Republican Matt Barton, the owner of a courier business, in a Feb. 5 runoff for House District 5, according to unofficial results. The Calhoun-based district covers parts of Gordon and Murray counties.

A runoff is needed under Georgia law because none of the candidates received more than 50 percent of votes cast.

The other candidates in the race were Republican Steve Cochran, Republican Larry Massey, Democrat Brian Rosser and Republican Scott Tidwell.

Meadows, who died at age 74, was first elected to the Georgia House of  Representatives in 2004 and previously served as mayor of Calhoun and a member of the Calhoun City Council.

House Speaker David Ralston on Tuesday named state Rep. Jay Powell, R-Camilla, as the new chairman of the House Rules Committee.

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