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Republican candidates speak at GOP meeting
Catherine Davis
Catherine Davis - photo by Kelly Whitmire

Republican voters recently had a chance to hear from a gubernatorial candidate and two candidates for Congress. 

On Thursday, April 14, the Forsyth County Republican Party hosted gubernatorial candidate Catherine Davis and candidates for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, Byron Gatewood and Eugene Yu during a meeting at the party’s headquarters, 510 Lake Center Parkway, Ste. 103. 

The event allowed candidates to tell voters their backgrounds and what they would want to accomplish if elected and allowed those in attendance to ask questions.

Here’s what they talked about in the meeting.

Along with hosting candidates at their meetings, the Forsyth County Republican Party will also host several upcoming debates for local races. All debates will begin at 6:30 p.m., and the dates, races and locations are below:

  • Wednesday, April 20.; Forsyth County Board of Education Districts 1 and 3; Forsyth County Administration Building, 100 E Main Street;
  • Monday, April 25; state House District 24; Forsyth County Administration Building;
  • Wednesday, April 27; state House District 28, Forsyth County Administration Building.
  • Thursday, April 28; Forsyth County Commission District 1; Forsyth County Republican Party Headquarters. 

Eugene Yu
Eugene Yu - photo by Kelly Whitmire

Eugene Yu

The meeting’s first speaker was Yu, a veteran and businessman who ran for Georgia’s 7th Congressional district in 2020.

During his remarks, Yu spoke about his experiences as an immigrant from South Korea, in the Army and as a small business owner in the Augusta area.

Yu focused on economic issues that he wants to address if elected, such as cutting the national debt and for the federal government to stop sending money to other countries overseas and said he would not take money or bow down to special interests.

“I do not receive any money from special interests, I do not receive any money from lobbyists because guess what, in our American system, the second you receive the money from the special interest groups, or Super PACs or Washington lobbyists, when you get elected, they’ve got you,” Yu said. “No matter what, they’ve got you. They want their congressman working for them instead of working for the district.”

Along with Yu and Gatewood, Republicans Jake Evans, Rich McCormick, Paulette Smith, Mallory Staples, Blake Harbin and Suzi Voyles and Democrats Wayne White and Bob Christian have qualified to run for the seat.

Catherine Davis

While most of the focus of the Republican primary for governor has been on Gov. Brian Kemp and former Sen. David Perdue, Davis said she wanted to give a new voice to voters.

Davis said she was in favor of the second amendment, felt parents should have a resource for getting graphic books out of schools and, in her words, was the most pro-life candidate in the state.

“We can’t keep expecting that we can keep doing the same thing and get a different result,” she told the crowd. “Having an ‘R’ behind your name is no longer enough. We have to take a stand. We must take a stand for our state because the very soul of Georgia is at stake right now.”

Davis, Perdue, Kemp, Kandiss Taylor and Tom Williams are all running as Republicans in the primary. The winner of that race will face Democrat Stacey Abrams, Libertarian Shane Hazel and independent Al Bartell in November. 

Byron Gatewood
Byron Gatewood - photo by Kelly Whitmire

Byron Gatewood 

Gatewood said like his opponent, Yu, who spoke about putting his own campaign signs out, he has also spent his campaign personally meeting voters. 

“Some of us are knocking on our own doors, putting our own signs in the ground, we’re doing things, but the grassroots, representative style government, I happen to be a really big fan,” he said. “There happen to be some people with really big money behind them too, but don’t get voices confused; listen to the message, listen to the experience, listen to what people say.”

As a veteran of the U.S. Army Reserve working in military intelligence and a former small businesses owner who was impacted heavily by the COVID-19 pandemic and response, Gatewood said he had experience dealing with issues facing voters.

Answering a question from the crowd, Gatewood said he did not want to see the federal government become involved in state elections.