Republican State House Rep. Houston Gaines won reelection Tuesday and will continue to represent District 117 in the Georgia General Assembly for the next two years.
District 117 covers areas of Athens including Atlanta Highway, parts of Jefferson Road and areas west of the University of Georgia and northwest of Sandy Creek Park.
Gaines won against Democrat Mokah Jasmine Johnson by about 13% of the vote. Johnson won 43.39% of the vote, while Gaines won 56.61% of the vote, according to unofficial results from the Georgia Secretary of State.
“Representative Gaines has done a fantastic job representing our district and our community in his first few years in office, and this election just shows that, you know, our community, our voters believe that he deserves the chance to keep working,” said Matthew Couper, Gaines’ campaign manager.
Gaines has served District 117 for the past two years after defeating Deborah Gonzalez in 2018 by seven percentage points. Gaines supports reducing the state income tax to less than 5% and “conservative business reforms,” according to his website.
Johnson, the co-founder of the Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement, ran for office for the first time in this race. Johnson supports ending cash bail and mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenders and expanding Medicaid, according to her website.
“I want to thank all of my supporters and donors. This was a tough race, yet despite COVID-19, racial tension, and many variables we ran an honorable campaign. Congrats to my opponent. He will continue to represent HD 117, yet the fight for justice and equity is far from over… I will continue to fight this battle against injustice with compassion and hold our oppressors accountable,” Johnson said in a statement sent to The Red & Black.