H/T to Maya Prabhu and Greg Bluestein this morning on Twitter.
Bryan Miller, Grandson of Gov/Sen Zell Miller, has announced that he’s jumping in the race for LG. Like his grandfather, he is running as a Democrat. Which is interesting because he managed Doug Collin’s Congressional campaign in 2012. I’m sure that will come up in the Democratic primary and given the current trajectory of the party, I’m not sure he will find the same acceptance that his grandfather was able to enjoy. While it may be an appealing trait in a general election, or an advantageous one for a ranked choice voting scenario, he does have to make it through the gauntlet of the party base.
Miller founded the Zell Miller Foundation (of which I am a graduate of the inaugural leadership class, it was great and I’d recommend it) to build on his grandfather’s legacy. He’s also a graduate of Mercer Law, which has become a rather popular alma mater in Georgia political circles given Nathan Deal, John Kennedy, and Cathy Cox (current Dean of the law school) among others.
While Miller is not a political neophyte, this is his first run for elected office. His family connections and the legacy of his grandfather should be helpful in gaining support and fundraising. Personally I’m interested to see which way former Zell Miller Floor Leader Calvin Smyre goes with this race or if he stays on the side lines until the general.
To add one more interesting piece of political melodrama to this announcement, let’s throw in the role of the University System of Georgia. Miller’s main campaign plank is the Hope Scholarship. Miller’s father in law is Fmr Chancellor Wrigley. With the current leadership of the USG as interim and Fmr Sec Purdue being a candidate vying for the chancellorship it could be interesting to see if this particular inside baseball political struggle comes more to the foreground in the LG race. You may be saying “But Eric, that’s appointed by the Governor.” and you are correct dear reader. But the LG would be able to utilize some legislative strength in terms of budget and other Senate confirmations (certain appointees have been left out of the resolution in the past) as well as the soft power of influence.