Thomasville Times Enterprise

May 10, 2014

Economic growth among Raines' priorities

Patti Dozier

THOMASVILLE — If elected May 20, Richard David Raines will not serve more than eight years as District 8 state senator.

The candidate said that if he has not accomplished what he set out to do in that length of time, it will be time for him to step aside.

When Raines ran for a seat on the Lowndes County Commission in 2010, one of his campaign promises was to serve one term. In January, he announced he would not seek a second term to the commission he now co-chairs.

In February, Raines was approached about opposing Tim Golden, incumbent District 8 senator. He and his wife prayed about the situation, and Raines announced his candidacy.

Two days later, Golden announced he would not seek re-election.

“It really is about serving for my wife and I,” Raines explained.

Raines’ business provides medical care to inmates in prisons and jails. He began the business in 2012, with a bank loan and working from his kitchen table. In 2013, he saw $700,000 in billable income and created 11 new jobs.

As a senator, one of his priorities would be to grow the economy in southwest Georgia. Raines said Georgia is becoming the place to do business in the South, and he wants to be an advocate for this area.

“I’m tired of south Georgia sending our money to Atlanta and not getting anything in return,” the candidate said.

Raines said that as a state senator he would not accept gifts, meals, trips or any other incentive from any lobbyist.

“I don’t need any incentives to listen,” he explained.

Most of the people making education-related decisions have grown children, Raines said.

Three days after announcing his candidacy, Raines created an education advisory panel made up of parents, teachers and administrators from private and public schools and home-school participants.

“I want to get experts involved and get their answers in education,” the candidate said.

Common Core, he said, should be blocked from Georgia schools, and decisions about curriculum and standards should not be based on “political hot buttons.”

Raines said it is not government’s responsibility to educate his children. Education, he explained, is the responsibility of parents.

And it should be up to parents how they educate their children, he added

Senior reporter Patti Dozier can be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 1820.