Radulovacki tells Around Town that he plans to run in next summer’s Democratic Primary to succeed Chambliss.
“I feel called to do what I can to serve Georgia and our nation through greater public service,” he said.
RADULOVAKCI’S announcement makes him the first candidate to announce definitive plans to run in the Democratic primary. Michelle Nunn, a high-ranking official with the Points of Light Foundation and the daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), is looking closely at a race and state Sen. Steve Thompson (D-Marietta) told Around Town last week that he would run if Nunn does not.
If party leaders had hoped to run Nunn in an uncontested primary, anointing her as “the” candidate while being able to save their campaign dollars for the general election, such hopes are now out the window. And though Sam Nunn is still well regarded by older Georgians, he left office in 1997. Thus, the Nunn name probably means about as much to voters under 40 as do the names of such past Georgia senators as the late Herman Talmadge and Richard B. Russell.
RADULOVACKI, 50, is known professionally as “Dr. Rad” and operates a solo practice caring for those with profound mental illness, addiction and dual diagnoses. He has practiced in Vinings since 2009 and prior to that was at the Ridgeview Institute in Smyrna.
Born in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, he immigrated to this country at age 7 with his parents and is a naturalized citizen. Were he to win election to the Senate, he would raise the cumulative IQ of that body by several points all by himself. He has bachelor degrees in economics and Russian from Amherst College, an MBA in finance and marketing from the University of Chicago, a medical degree from the University of Illinois and completed his psychiatry residency at Yale.
He and his wife, Susan, live in the Virginia-Highlands and have two teenaged children.
AN ULTRAMARATHON RUNNER, (that is, distances of more than 42 miles), Radulovacki overcame Stage 3 colon cancer two years ago and now says he’s ready for a different kind of race.
“The opportunities of this great nation can seem elusive to many Americans, including the people of Georgia. I’m convinced that solving our country’s problems will create opportunities, but getting from here to there requires both urgency and determination from our elected leaders,” he said.
As for his position on ObamaCare, Radulovacki says, “I support the Affordable Care Act based on the following: I firmly believe in good health care for all (I am, after all, a physician), but feel we must confront issues of cost, need, allocation of limited resources and personal responsibility. Unless and until we do, funding health care as we know it will force fiscal trade-offs that profoundly affect other highly prized aspects of life as Americans.”
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11TH DISTRICT Congressional hopeful Tricia Pridemore has picked Cobb businesswoman Kim Gresh as campaign chairman in her quest to succeed incumbent Phil Gingrey.
“I am thrilled to support Tricia’s campaign for Congress and to serve as her Chair,” said Gresh, who is president of S.A. White Oil Co. in Marietta, serves on numerous charitable boards and who in January was named as the Marietta Daily Journal’s Cobb Citizen of the Year at the annual Cobb Chamber of Commerce banquet. “I’ve worked alongside Tricia and I know she will serve our community well in Congress. With her background in the private sector I know she has the right perspective and is the leader we need.”
Said Pridemore, “I am truly honored to have not only the support, but the campaign leadership of a friend as well-respected as Kim Gresh. In every other endeavor I’ve worked on with Kim, she’s tirelessly pushed for those things she believes in and it’s no wonder (she) was selected Cobb’s Citizen of the Year.”
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COBB Commission Chairman Tim Lee recently boasted to an audience of local business leaders that the county’s economy was shaking off the effects of the late 2000s recession, said tax receipts are headed upward once again and predicted that if that continues, he and the commission would continue or perhaps even accelerate the rollback of county property tax rates to 2011 levels.
But that rosy picture could get cloudy in a hurry if the “Gang of Eight” comprehensive immigration bill now being debated in the U.S. Senate becomes law. Why? Because Cobb taxpayers would be on the hook for providing public services for thousands — perhaps tens of thousands — of additional people.
The bill as it now stands would not provide immediate citizenship for the 11 million or more people in the country illegally, but it would grant legal status to the overwhelming majority of them and their dependents. And as an amnesty in all but name, it also would make them almost instantly eligible for an array of public services — some funded by Washington, some not.
School systems and hospital emergency rooms have for years been required to provide education and care to all comers, whether here legally or not. But those costs — heavily subsidized by local taxpayers — will only go up if the measure becomes law. And that’s not all. As 11 Georgia senators (all Republicans) noted in a June 11 letter to U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss (both R-Ga.), “We have seen no cost estimate on how great a financial burden this bill will place on the State of Georgia and local governments in terms of the increased burden on state and local services. Even Los Angeles County officials in California (all Democrats) are expressing concern over additional burdens being placed on local services as a result of the new proposal. Additional burdens on public health care, our education system, and other state and local services will only aggravate already precarious budget issues in our state. The Medicaid liability alone created by instantly creating hundreds of thousands of new enrollees would be sufficient to bankrupt our state,” they wrote.
Among the signers were two Cobb lawmakers, Sens. Judson Hill (R-east Cobb) and Lindsey Tippins (R-west Cobb).
NEITHER Isakson nor Chambliss have said how they will vote on the bill, although both voted to allow debate on it rather than keep it bottled up in committee.
GOP leaders are torn between the party base, which is seen as overwhelmingly against another amnesty; and the desires of some in the business community eager to maintain a supply of cut-rate black-market labor. Some also argue the party must broaden its base, although the last amnesty in 1986 did not result in an influx of Hispanic voters into Republican ranks.