Isaacon, chairman of the Senate Ethics and Veterans Affairs Committees, will step down after decades of elected office, claiming the distinction of being the only Georgian ever elected to the state House, the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate.
In a statement, Isaacson said he underwent surgery to remove his kidney growth this week and is still recovering from a fall in July, which broke four ribs, all while Parkinson's disease continues to thrive.
"I quit the job I love because my health challenges are laid on me, my family and my staff," Isaacson said. "With the growing health challenges that I face, I have come to the conclusion that I will not be able to do the long-term job the way Georgian citizens deserve. This is against every fiber of my being left in the middle of my Senate term, but I know that the right thing to do on behalf of my country. "
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell praised Isaacson as a" first-class legislator "and" highest-honest man, "while Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer called Isaacson" one of the sweetest, most thoughtful senators. " 1
The Republican governor may appoint a replacement before a special election
The new vacancy will strengthen the notion, that Georgia is one of the most important battlegrounds for the 2020 elections [1 9659002] State to have two seats in the Senate ballot Republican Gov. Brian Kemp will appoint Isaacson's deputy until a November 2020 special election determines who will fill the remainder of his term – at the same time as the Republican senator David Perdue is reelected, Isaacson's term will be for a six-year term in 2022.
Some Democrats also hope to make Georgia, where Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton by only 5 percentage points in 2016 and the GOP won even closer revara the governor last year – and fellow Sun Belt Arizona and Texas, which also move quickly to the left in recent years – competing in the presidential race.
The most important prospect for Senate democracy would be Stacy Abrams, a former state Democratic leader who became a national star during his narrow loss in last year's race for governor.
Nick Ayers, former Chief of Staff Mike Pence, was another potential candidate on this list, but said he would not be named. Ayers played an instrumental role in getting Pence in Georgia to campaign for Kemp in 2018.
Ayers was offered, but denied, the role of White House chief of staff because President Donald Trump would not agree to his time limits. Ayers wanted to stay in office for a few months because he knew there was a chance the Senate seat could be open, according to a source familiar with the discussions.
"I have been pleased to participate in every election cycle since 2002, fighting for the politicians and people I believed in. My decision to leave the White House and Washington, DC earlier this year, was the sole purpose of retire from politics and enjoy this season of life with my wife and three young children – a priority now and for many years.Governor Kemp has a number of great opportunities to choose who will represent our country with success and excellence – but I will not be one of them, "Ayers said in a statement.