The following column is an opinion piece written by Georgia State Representative Jason Spencer House Seat 180, and he is seeking re-election. House Seat 180 makes up most of Camden County, parts of Charlton and Ware counties. The piece was submitted and was not edited or altered by AllOnGeorgia. It reflects the views of the candidate and not necessarily those of AllOnGeorgia.
One of the most quotable phrases in American movie rhetoric comes from the iconic movie, A Few Good Men starring Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson where Nicholson played the villainous and infamous Col. Nathan Jessup. You must have seen the movie to appreciate the memorable exchange between the two characters that yielded many quotable lines used routinely in American culture.
The crowning achievements in this exchange were captured by Colonel Jessup’s two distinguishing and unanswerable proclamations: “You need me on that wall” and, “You can’t handle the truth!” As villainous as Col. Jessup may have been, he spoke a simple but poignant truth. He devoted his life and career to the righteous cause of serving and defending his country, which invariably entailed making life or death decisions under conditions of extraordinary stress.
Not only do these weighty decisions exist on the military battlefield, similar circumstances arise on the political battlefield as well. Representatives take an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution against both foreign and domestic enemies. During my time at the Capitol, I fought and stared down the many domestic enemies to our Constitution and wellbeing. Together, we arrested the spread of Obamacare in Georgia, and I led the charge and WON…again and again. However, that fight is still not over. Therefore, in the immortal words of Col. Jessup, “You need me on that wall.”
I have served southeast Georgia honorably by taking up righteous causes against dark forces to protect children where many in my position either would not or could not. I took on causes like this because the voiceless need a voice and one that packs a punch. My legislation led to the exposure of one of the most notorious child molesters and child sex scandals in the United States. I have proven myself and would be honored to continue to be the people’s voice inside the state Capitol. This fight is not over either. You need me that wall.
All the while, I have kept my eye on local needs for our district. The job of a state Representative requires that individual to be accessible and reliable. When I was first elected to office, I made a promise to my constituency that I would publicly publish my cell phone. What public figure does that? I give frequent updates using my website where constituents can sign up for legislative and periodic updates. While Atlanta was giving emergency directives from the safety and security of the Gold Dome in Atlanta, I used the power of social media to convey important emergency information coming out of Atlanta to my constituents during Hurricane Matthew and Irma. Our local T.V. news media market out of Jacksonville took no interest in keeping us up to date on what was happening in Atlanta, so I filled that void for my constituency. I will work with the next Governor to make sure they better understand the needs of Southeast Georgia during natural disasters and urge them to get involved locally, rather than issue directives out of a safe and secure bunker in the Gold Dome far away from the people in a time of serious need. You need me on that wall.
While leading in times of great need, I have continued to maintain focus on our local economic workforce development needs. I have secured funding for our technical college in Camden County over three budget cycles with the final phase of funding of $17.8 million secured in this year’s budget. We should break ground this coming September. I am proud of those results, but oversight is still necessary. You need me on that wall.
However, keeping an eye on the future and working to help diversify our economy has been a top priority; therefore, I have led the way on developing the first pieces of Georgia’s space policy to make Georgia the next great ‘space state’. When a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity like the Spaceport Camden project presented itself to our community, I embraced my role and obligation as the local representative to lead on this issue. With the success of this project, Camden and South Georgia become relevant under the Gold Dome and not seen as distant counties several hours south of Atlanta. As a result, I became the space policy expert inside the state Capitol and passed significant space-related legislation that will make Spaceport Camden a success. These efforts are just the beginning. You need me on that wall.
It takes a heart of a warrior on the political battlefield with the grit to ‘stand a post’ on behalf of our active duty and military veterans who stood watch at that wall to protect our nation and its Constitution who afforded me the opportunity to serve our community. It is the least I can do. Fighting the good fight is no easy task when under constant political pressure and attacks. However, I have been tested, and I am trusted. You need me on that wall.
I have delivered responsive services to my constituents who may have trouble navigating through their state government just to get a professional license so they can work and feed their families. I have gotten the government out of their way. In addition, I have proudly assisted our veterans countless times by putting my medical knowledge to work for them in taking on the Veterans Administration (VA). Too many times, those entrenched inside the VA’s medical bureaucracy treat our veterans like a number instead of a person and dismiss their issues too quickly, denying them their rightful benefits. Furthermore, I have used my medical knowledge to answer the cry of desperate parents in our district who seek answers as to why their children are contracting rare pediatric cancers that fit the pattern of a suspicious cluster. This work is not finished. You need me on that wall.
To the voters of Georgia House District 180, I stand ready at my post to serve you again. I stand ready at the wall. Vote for me on May 22nd, and I would be honored to be among the few good men in your service. You need me on that wall.