Gainesville lawmaker picked for No. 2 job in Georgia Senate

Gainesville state Sen. Butch Miller has been picked to serve in the second-most-powerful post in the Georgia Senate, replacing Gwinnett County’s David Shafer as president pro tempore.

Miller, who has been in the Senate since 2010, served as Gov. Nathan Deal’s floor leader. Shafer, R-Duluth, gave up his leadership post to run for lieutenant governor, hoping to replace Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, who is running for governor.

Miller could not immediately be reached Thursday.

“This is a great leadership team that will work well together to advance Georgia,” Cagle said in a statement.

The election took place during the Senate Republican Caucus retreat this week. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported last week that Miller, who is in the car sales business, appeared to have the votes needed to secure a win.

The state Senate has 56 members, including 37 Republicans. The president pro tem is elected by the chamber as a whole, but the caucus votes as a bloc for the Republican candidate who receives its endorsement.

This is Miller’s second run at the position. He lost to Shafer by one vote in 2014.

Miller had considered running for lieutenant governor in 2018, but he decided against it. His promotion to second-in-charge futher cements Gainesville’s dominance at the statehouse. Deal, Cagle and Miller are all from the Hall County city.

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