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State Senate 17 - Jim Nichols (D)
Jim Nichols

The race for State Senate District 17, which covers all of Newton County, is the most crowded in the state, despite the fact that Rep. John Lunsford (R-McDonough) pulled out of the race in April.

Five contenders have stepped forward to replace Sen. John Douglas (R-Social Circle) who held the seat for six years; Douglas is running for Public Service Commission, District 2.

Jim Nichols

Democrat Jim Nichols, legislative aide and UPS truck loader, is running for state senate because he believes the Republicans have mismanaged the budget.

"Unemployment in this state is sitting at 10.6 percent, we have slashed our budget to the bone and we lead the nation in bank failures. Republicans have run this state into the ground and its time to get Georgia moving in the right direction again," Nichols said in an e-mail. "I have what it takes to shake things up in Atlanta."

Nichols said his platform is to improve the budget situation, stop the slashing of school budgets and promote small businesses.

"We are giving teachers the pink slip and shutting down summer schools while our high school dropout rates continue to climb," he said. "Our small businesses are struggling while big businesses are getting hand outs. My first priority will be to fight for the people that make this state great ... the entrepreneurs that keep this economy vibrant and strong."

Nichols is a UPS truck loader and has worked as legislative aide for state Rep. Debbie Buckner, Rep. Rick Crawford and state Sen. Gail Buckner. He said he won the 2008 and 2009 Legislative Aide of the Year awards from the Young Democrats of Georgia.

Nichols has an associate's degree in political science from American River College and is working on degrees in economics and philosophy at Georgia State University.

He is involved in Amnesty International, is a member of Democracy for America, a national organization that helps citizens understand and become involved in politics. He is the former chair of the Henry County Democrats.

For more information visit, e-mail him at or call his cell at (770) 312-6736.