Congressman Jack Kingston (GA-1) released the following statement upon learning of Senator Chambliss' decision to retire at the end of his current term:
Saxby Chambliss has been a great public servant. He is a good and honest man who has always done what he thinks is best for our great state and this country. I have appreciated the opportunity to work with him in Congress. On a personal level, Libby and I cherish our friendship with Saxby and Julianne and know it will continue for years to come.
Serving the State of Georgia is one of the greatest honors of my life. From the bounties of our fields and the unparalleled might of our soldiers to the top-notch research of our universities and the global commerce churning through our ports, I have worked to strengthen some of our greatest assets. I have also fought to cut the federal budget and reduce the size of government so we may free future generations from a life indebted to China. Over the coming days, I will discuss with my family and meditate through prayer on how best to continue that service.
Upon the announcement today that U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss will not seek a third term, Gov. Nathan Deal praised his service to Georgia:
Saxby Chambliss's tenure in the Senate saw tumultuous times for our nation, from wars against terrorists to the fiscal crisis that threatens us today. Representing us, Saxby became an expert and a leader on these most important issues. Having served with Saxby in Washington for many years, I understand the gravitational pull of Georgia soil because I too felt the call of home. Saxby didn't wake up every morning and stick his finger in the wind; he started each day asking what he can do to ensure his grandchildren inherit a country every bit as great as the one enjoyed by our generation. History will remember Sen. Saxby Chambliss as a great Georgia leader and an American statesman; I will remember him as a friend.
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) made the following statement on news that Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss will not seek reelection in 2014:
I was informed by Senator Chambliss earlier today that he would not seek reelection. I received this news with great sadness and disappointment because Saxby is one of my best friends in or out of politics. I know this was a difficult decision for Saxby and Julianne, but I understand their desire to spend time with their wonderful family and enter into a new phase of their lives.
Saxby Chambliss is one of the Senate's strongest voices on national security, and is incredibly respected both for his intellect and gentlemanly nature. His decision not to seek reelection is a great loss for the United States Senate. I am confident that Saxby will continue to aggressively represent the people of Georgia and our nation as a whole until his last day in office. The Chambliss family are my dearest friends and have served the people of Georgia well.
Democratic Party of Georgia Chairman Mike Berlon releases the following statement regarding Senator Saxby Chambliss' decision to decline a run for re-election in 2014:
Today's announcement by Senator Chambliss that he has decided to retire presents a great opportunity for Georgia Democrats to reclaim one of our US Senate seats. This development gives us the time we need to field an exceptional candidate for the race.
We began our candidate recruitment process on this race several months ago. We have consulted with the national party and are continuing to vet potential candidates, both within the DPG and the DNC. This process is important and we are not interested in rushing it. We are interested in getting it right.
It is clear that the politics and demographics within Georgia are changing. In November, President Obama received more than 45.5% of the statewide vote with little national help. With the significant changes that are taking place, we believe that we could win this seat even if it were against an incumbent. With this being an open seat, our odds have improved significantly. This is especially true because it appears that there may be a significantly divided primary on the republican side.
There is no question that Georgia is on the way to turning blue. This is the first step in reclaiming the House and Senate on a national level across the south.
We're looking forward to next year.
U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today released the following statement in response to Sen. Chambliss' announcement that he will retire from the Senate in 2014:
Saxby and I have been friends for 51 years and it has been my honor to serve alongside him in the U.S. House and in the U.S. Senate. We first met when we attended the University of Georgia together in the 1960s, and our wives – Julianne Chambliss and Dianne Isakson – happened to be sorority sisters at UGA. I have supported Saxby in every political race he's run, and I'm grateful that he has done the same for me. Saxby is a true statesman who has worked tirelessly throughout his time in public life to represent the values and interests of Georgians. Our state and our country are better because of Saxby Chambliss. I will miss him dearly after 2014, but I look forward to working with him for two more years in the Senate to tackle the tough issues facing our county.
U.S. Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-14) issued the following statement after Senator Saxby Chambliss announced today that he would not seek reelection:
Senator Chambliss' decades of distinguished public service place him among the giants of Georgia politics. He has been a tireless advocate for Georgia and a respected expert on critical issues facing the nation. I will always be thankful for the senator's mentorship and friendship, from the day I joined him on his bus tour during my first run for the State House through all the tough debates we've had in the years since. His leadership will be sorely missed in Washington, and Georgia's public servants will look to Senator Chambliss as an example for many years to come.