PoliticsMonday 06.10.24

“This is where I get back in my truck”: Georgia congressional candidate, convicted in Jan. 6, walks off debate stage.

Chuck Hand, a Georgia congressional candidate who was convicted of a misdemeanor for participating in the January 6th insurrection, walked off stage during a Republican primary debate Sunday.

“I'm not interested in debating the issues of the 2nd District with a man who doesn't even reside in it, especially one who orchestrates attacks on my wife,” Hand said after a debate moderator asked him a question about Congress’ new farm bill. “This is where I get back in my truck and head back to southwest Georgia, because I’ve got two races to win.”

“You’re not staying, sir? Are you leaving? Okay. I guess we will continue,” debate moderator Donna Lowry said as Hand walked off the stage. He then answered questions from reporters for nearly 20 minutes, attacking fellow Republican Wayne Johnson.

Hand said he was refusing to debate Johnson ahead of the June 18 GOP primary runoff. He argued Johnson orchestrated a former candidate, Michael Nixon — who endorsed Johnson after Nixon finished third in the four-way May 21 primary — bringing up prior criminal charges against Hand and his wife. Nixon during his endorsement announcement mentioned a 2005 criminal trespass charge and a 2010 DUI charge against Hand, both of which were dismissed, and he discussed Hand’s wife being convicted for illegally selling oxycodone.

Hand and Johnson are running for the Republican nomination for Georgia’s 2nd Congressional District. The winner would face 16-term Democratic incumbent Rep. Sanford Bishop in the general election in November.

Recount Wire