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Buddy Carter
Buddy Carter, Official Portrait, 114th Congress (cropped).jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Georgia's 1st district
Assumed office
January 3, 2015
Preceded byJack Kingston
Member of the Georgia State Senate
from the 1st district
In office
Preceded byEric Johnson
Succeeded byBen Watson
Member of the Georgia House of Representatives
from the 159th district
In office
Succeeded byAnn Purcell
Personal details
Earl Leroy Carter

(1957-09-06) September 6, 1957 (age 62)
Port Wentworth, Georgia, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Amy Coppage
m. 1978)
EducationYoung Harris College (AA)
University of Georgia (BS)
Net worth$13.2 million (2018)[1]

Earl Leroy "Buddy" Carter (born September 6, 1957) is an American politician serving as the U.S. Representative for Georgia's 1st congressional district since 2015. The district is based in Savannah and includes most of the coastal southern portion of the state. A member of the Republican Party, he previously served as a Georgia State Representative (2005–2009) and Georgia State Senator (2009–2014).[2][3]

Early life and education

Carter graduated from Robert W. Groves High School, in 1975, in Garden City, Georgia. He earned an associate degree from Young Harris College, in 1977 and a Bachelor of Science, in pharmacy, from the University of Georgia, in 1980.

Political career

Carter served on the planning and zoning commission for the city of Pooler from 1989 to 1993 and on Pooler's city council from 1994 to 1995. Carter served as Pooler's mayor from 1996 to 2004 as well. Carter was first elected to the state legislature in 2005—serving two terms in the House of Representatives from 2006 to 2010. Carter was elected to the Georgia Senate in 2009 and sworn into the upper house in 2010.[2] He sat on the Senate Appropriations, Health and Human Services, Higher Education, and Public Safety committees.[2]

In March 2014, a controversy emerged regarding S.B. 408, a bill authored by Carter that would increase reimbursement rates for pharmacies in Georgia. As he is the owner of three pharmacies which would see increased profits as a result of the proposed action, his vote was considered by many to be in violation of the ethical guidelines of the State Senate. "Obviously, it's borderline," he admitted when questioned afterwards.[4]

Carter gave up his state house seat in 2014 to make a run for Congress after 22-year incumbent Jack Kingston announced he was running for the United States Senate. He finished first in the six-way Republican primary with 36 percent of the vote, well short of the 51 percent required for outright victory.[5] He then defeated Bob Johnson in the runoff with 53 percent of the vote.[6] In the general election, he trounced his Democratic challenger, Brian Reese, with 60.9 percent of the vote, carrying all but two counties in the district.[7] In 2016, he was unopposed in both the primary and general elections, and took over 99 percent of the vote against a write-in candidate.[8][9]

Political positions

Drug policy

The marijuana legalization advocacy organization NORML has rated Carter a "D", which indicates a strongly anti-drug stance.[10]

Carter voted against the Veterans Equal Access Amendment in 2015 & 2016 (which would expand access to medical marijuana for veterans), against the McClintock/Polis Amendment in 2015 (which would prevent the Department of Justice from prosecuting federal marijuana offenses that are legal in the state) and against the Rohrabacher/Farr Amendment in 2015 (which would prevent federal officials from interfering with a state's medical marijuana program).[10]

In 2017, Carter renewed his push to drug test citizens who receive unemployment insurance.[11]

Health care

Carter supports the repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). He has stated that there is no circumstance that would induce him to vote in favor of keeping the ACA, including if most of his constituents were in favor of it.[12]

On July 26, 2017, Carter was asked during a live television interview if he supported Trump's criticism of Republican U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski for her opposition to the procedural vote to begin the Senate's healthcare debate. Carter agreed with the criticism, saying, "Somebody needs to go over there to that Senate and snatch a knot in their ass."[13] The incident prompted widespread media coverage.[14][15][16]

Tax reform

Carter voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.[17] His reason for voting "Yea" on the bill was that he believed businesses located in his district would become more competitive in a global market. He also said it would help his constituents earn and/or save more money.[18]


Carter has stated that "granting amnesty to illegal immigrants is unconstitutional."[19] However, he has co-sponsored a bill which would let illegal immigrants serve in the US military in exchange for legal residency.[20]

Carter supported President Donald Trump's 2017 executive order to temporarily curtail immigration from six countries until better screening methods are devised. He stated that "While I believe there needs to be thoughtful clarifications on the executive actions similar to Secretary Kelly’s announcement about lawful permanent residents, the number one priority of the federal government is to provide for the common defense."[21]

Carter wants to prohibit all federal funding from sanctuary cities in Georgia (sanctuary cities prohibit city officials from asking about a person's immigration status when they're reporting an unrelated crime).[22] Carter also stated he would like to test the huge backlog of rape kits in Georgia, except in sanctuary cities. He said about testing the rape kit backlog, "We'll do everything we can to help," but then added, "Unless they’re a sanctuary city."[23][unreliable source?]


Carter opposes abortion. He cosponsored the Sanctity of Human Life Act (H.R. 586), which would make all abortions illegal.[24]

H.R. 586 provides a constitutional right to life to embryos at the moment of fertilization.[25] While a similar bill in the Senate, S. 231, claims to not target women who use birth control, women who suffer from miscarriages, or families that want to conceive using vitro fertilization,[26] the House bill contains no such exceptions.[citation needed] When asked by a constituent during a town hall in Savannah, Georgia whether he had concerns about restricting access to birth control when rape is so common on college campuses, Carter replied "I'm not going to vote for any bill that endorses abortion."[27] H.R. 586, which would ban abortion, contains no exceptions for the life or health of the mother or for cases of rape or incest.


When questioned during a February 2017 town hall in Savannah, Georgia as to whether religious doctrine ought to be taught in public school science classes, Carter responded "I have always thought we should teach the Bible in school."[28]

LGBT rights

Carter believes gay marriage should be illegal.[29]

During an August 2017 town hall in Brunswick, Georgia, Carter stated that he supported a ban on transgender people serving in the military, saying, "I don't want 'em serving in the military. I'm sorry."[30][31]

Gun rights

Carter is a strong supporter of gun rights, and has an "A" rating from the National Rifle Association for his stances on gun issues.

In 2018, Carter stated: "I support the 2nd Amendment so I don't want to see us outlawing anything. However, however I will say that I have recently come out and said I am against bump stocks." (Bump stocks are what allowed the shooter in the Las Vegas Massacre to fire more rapidly than semi-automatic weapons normally do.) "Automatic weapons are against the law here in America and a bump stock in my opinion is nothing more than an attempt to circumvent the law so I don't think that we should have those," said Carter.

"But you know at the same time people have the right to bear arms, it's the 2nd Amendment," Carter reiterated. "And you know even if you were to outlaw some of these semi-automatic weapons they're going to get a get a weapon from somewhere," he said.

In February 2018 during a town hall in Hinesville, Georgia when asked about mass shootings in America, Carter told attendees to not look towards Congress for answers about gun violence, stating Congress is not responsible for gun violence in America.[32]

Bills introduced and signed into law

The GAO Access and Oversight Act of 2017 (Pub.L. 115–3,H.R. 72), which was one of the first Acts of the 115th United States Congress signed into law by President Trump during the first 100 days of his presidency, was introduced to the House by Carter on January 1, 2017. It passed through the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and was passed by the full Senate, on January 17, 2017. It was signed by Trump on January 31, 2017.[33] The bill ensures that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has full access to a database created by Congress in 1996 to track recent job hires mainly to assist agencies at the state level with child support enforcement. 115-3 will enable the GAO to ensure that recipients of federal means-tested programs like Unemployment Insurance, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Earned income tax credit (EITC), and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) are eligible.[34][35]

U.S. House of Representatives

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Electoral history

Georgia 159th State House District Republican Primary, 2004[40]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter 3,254 53.97
Republican Purcell 2,775 46.03
Total votes 6,029 100.0
Georgia 159th State House District General Election, 2004[41]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter 16,602 100.0
Total votes 16,602 100.0
Georgia 159th State House District General Election, 2006[42]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter (incumbent) 11,851 100.0
Total votes 11,851 100.0
Georgia 159th State House District General Election, 2008[43]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter (incumbent) 24,026 100.0
Total votes 24,026 100.0
Georgia 1st State Senate District Special Election, 2009[44]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter 10,904 82.14
Republican Hair 2,371 17.86
Total votes 13,275 100.0
Georgia 1st State Senate District General Election, 2010[45]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter (incumbent) 34,890 70.32
Democratic Smith 14,723 29.68
Total votes 49,613 100.0
Georgia 1st State Senate District General Election, 2012[46]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Buddy Carter (incumbent) 53,821 100.0
Total votes 53,821 100.0
Georgia's 1st congressional district Republican Primary, 2014[47]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican E. L. 'Buddy' Carter 18,971 36.22
Republican Robert E. 'Bob' Johnson 11,890 22.70
Republican John A. McCallum 10,715 20.46
Republican J. L. 'Jeff' Chapman 6,918 13.21
Republican Darwin Carter 2,819 5.38
Republican Earl T. Martin 1,063 2.03
Total votes 52,376 100.0
Georgia's 1st congressional district Republican Run-off Primary, 2014[48]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican E. L. 'Buddy' Carter 22,871 53.81
Republican Robert E. 'Bob' Johnson 19,632 46.19
Total votes 42,503 100.0
Georgia's 1st congressional district General Election, 2014[49]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican E. L. 'Buddy' Carter 95,337 60.91
Democratic Brian Corwin Reese 61,175 39.09
Total votes 156,512 100.0
Georgia's 1st congressional district General Election, 2016[50][51]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Earl "Buddy" Carter (incumbent) 210,243 99.59
Write-in Nathan Russo 869 0.41
Total votes 211,112 100.0
Georgia's 1st congressional district General Election, 2018[52]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Earl L. 'Buddy' Carter (incumbent) 144,741 57.74
Democratic Lisa M. Ring 105,942 42.26
Total votes 250,683 100.0


  1. ^ "Ranking the Net Worth of the 115th". Retrieved August 5, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c Senator Buddy Carter. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
  3. ^ District 1 Senator Buddy Carter (R). Retrieved June 28, 2013.
  4. ^ "Squarespace - Claim This Domain". Archived from the original on January 4, 2015. Retrieved July 10, 2018.
  5. ^ "Our Campaigns - GA District 01 - R Primary Race - May 20, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  6. ^ "Our Campaigns - GA District 01 - R Runoff Race - Jul 22, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  7. ^ "Our Campaigns - GA - District 01 Race - Nov 04, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  8. ^ "Our Campaigns - GA District 01 - R Primary Race - May 24, 2016". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  9. ^ "Our Campaigns - GA District 01 Race - Nov 08, 2016". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  10. ^ a b Laura. "Georgia Scorecard - - Working to Reform Marijuana Laws". Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  11. ^ "Buddy Carter looks to drug test recipients of unemployment benefits | Political Insider blog". Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  12. ^ Christian, Ansley (February 22, 2017). "Rep. Buddy Carter addresses residents at town hall". WJCL. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  13. ^ GOP lawmaker on Murkowski: 'Snatch a knot in their ass' Julia Manchester. The Hill. July 26, 2017. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  14. ^ A Georgia Congressman Thinks the Senate Needs Someone to “Snatch a Knot in Their A--.” Um, What? Ben Zimmer. Slate. July 27, 2017. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  15. ^ 'Snatch a Knot in Their Ass': GOP Congressman Defends President Trump's Criticism of Sen. Lisa Murkowski Aric Jenkins. Time. July 26, 2017. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  16. ^ How Congressman Buddy Carter got the whole country looking up the phrase ‘snatch a knot’ Tim Rostan. MarketWatch. July 27, 2017. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  17. ^ Almukhtar, Sarah (December 19, 2017). "How Each House Member Voted on the Tax Bill". The New York Times. Retrieved December 25, 2017.
  18. ^ "Rep. Buddy Carter reacts to tax reform bill initially passing the House". WTOC. Retrieved December 25, 2017.
  19. ^ "Carter Statement on United States v. Texas Decision". Congressman Buddy Carter. June 23, 2016. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  20. ^ Spencer, Jeremy (June 7, 2017). "Congressman Buddy Carter co-sponsors military immigration bill for illegals | All On Georgia Bulloch County". All On Georgia Bulloch County. Archived from the original on August 12, 2017. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  21. ^ Blake, Aaron. "Coffman, Gardner join Republicans against President Trump's travel ban; here's where the rest stand". Denver Post. Retrieved January 30, 2017.
  22. ^ "Rep. Carter takes aim at 'sanctuary cities'". The Brunswick News. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  23. ^ Shechet, Ellie. "GOP Rep. Buddy Carter: We'll Help Clear Rape Kit Backlogs 'Unless They're a Sanctuary City'". The Slot. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  24. ^ "Protecting Life : U.S. Representative Buddy Carter". Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  25. ^ "H.R. 586 - Sanctity of Human Life Act". Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  26. ^ "S.231 - Life at Conception Act of 2017". Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  27. ^ Morekis, Jim. "Buddy Carter town hall heavy on drama and volume, but scant on specifics". Connect Savannah. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  28. ^ "Big crowd challenges, supports Buddy Carter at Savannah town hall". Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  29. ^ "Buddy Carter on Civil Rights". Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  30. ^ Galloway, Jim. "Buddy Carter on transgender troops: 'I don't want 'em serving' | Political Insider blog". Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  31. ^ "'I don't want 'em:' Georgia congressman praises transgender troop ban at town hall". Retrieved August 11, 2017.
  32. ^ "Congressman Carter on 2nd Amendment and semi-automatic weapons | WSAV Savannah". Retrieved May 12, 2018.
  33. ^ "President Trump Signs Sasse Legislation to Strengthen Taxpayer Watchdog", Office of Ben Sasse: U.S. Senator for Nebraska, Washington, February 2, 2017, retrieved March 28, 2017
  34. ^ "Senators Isakson, Perdue take action to increase government transparency and accountability". Office of Senator Isakson. January 19, 2017.
  35. ^ "McCaskill-Backed Bill Reducing Government Waste and Increasing Accountability Unanimously Passes Senate", Office of Claire McCaskill, January 19, 2017, archived from the original on March 29, 2017, retrieved March 28, 2017
  36. ^ "Member List". Retrieved November 6, 2017.
  37. ^ "Members". House Baltic Caucus. Retrieved February 21, 2018.
  38. ^ "Our Members". U.S. House of Representatives International Conservation Caucus. Archived from the original on August 1, 2018. Retrieved August 1, 2018.
  39. ^ "Members". U.S. - Japan Caucus. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  40. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the July 20, 2004 Primary Election". Georgia Secretary of State. December 13, 2005. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  41. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the November 2, 2004 General Election". Georgia Secretary of State. May 8, 2020. Retrieved December 21, 2005.
  42. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the Tuesday, November 07, 2006 General Election". Georgia Secretary of State. November 16, 2006. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  43. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the Tuesday, November 04, 2008 General Election". Georgia Secretary of State. February 18, 2009. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  44. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the Tuesday, November 03, 2009 Special Election". Georgia Secretary of State. November 10, 2009. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  45. ^ "Georgia Election Results Official Results of the Tuesday, November 02, 2010 General Election". Georgia Secretary of State. November 15, 2010. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  46. ^ "General Election November 6, 2012". Georgia Secretary of State. November 21, 2012. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  47. ^ "General Primary/General Nonpartisan/Special Election May 20, 2014". Georgia Secretary of State. May 29, 2014. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  48. ^ "General Primary Runoff and General Nonpartisan Election Runoff July 22, 2014". Georgia Secretary of State. July 28, 2014. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  49. ^ "General Election November 4, 2014". Georgia Secretary of State. November 10, 2014. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  50. ^ "General Election November 8, 2016". Georgia Secretary of State. December 1, 2016. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  51. ^ "2016 VOTES CAST FOR CERTIFIED WRITE-IN CANDIDATES". Georgia Secretary of State. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  52. ^ "November 6, 2018 General Election". Georgia Secretary of State. November 17, 2018. Retrieved May 8, 2020.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Jack Kingston
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Georgia's 1st congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Ken Buck
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Mark DeSaulnier
This page was last edited on 11 August 2020, at 04:21
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