Lucy McBath

Lucy McBath
Lucy McBath, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Georgia's 6th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2019
Preceded byKaren Handel
Personal details
Lucia Kay Holman

(1960-06-01) June 1, 1960 (age 59)
Joliet, Illinois, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Curtis McBath
EducationVirginia State University (BA)
WebsiteHouse website

Lucia Kay McBath (born June 1, 1960) is an American gun control advocate and politician who is a member of the United States House of Representatives from Georgia's 6th congressional district. The district, which was once represented by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, includes many of Atlanta's affluent northern suburbs, such as Alpharetta, Roswell, Johns Creek, Dunwoody, Sandy Springs, Brookhaven, and part of Marietta.

Her son Jordan Davis was shot and killed in November 2012. A member of the Democratic Party, McBath defeated Republican incumbent Karen Handel in the November 2018 election.

Early life and career[edit]

McBath was born in Joliet, Illinois, U.S., on June 1, 1960.[1][2] Her father, Lucien Holman, was a dentist who owned The Black Voice, an African-American newspaper, and served as president of the NAACP's Illinois chapter. Her mother, Wilma, worked as a nurse. Lucy has a sister, Lori.[3]

McBath attended Virginia State University and graduated with a bachelor's degree in political science in 1982.[4] After college, McBath worked as an intern for Douglas Wilder.[4] In the 1990s, she became a flight attendant for Delta Air Lines, and relocated to Atlanta, where Delta is headquartered.[2]

Political activism[edit]

Lucy McBath at a film discussion in 2015.

In 2012, McBath's 17-year-old son, Jordan Davis, was shot and killed following an argument at a gas station about loud music. Following his death, she joined Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America as a national spokeswoman. She attended a speech on gun violence at the White House given by President Barack Obama,[5] and supported the My Brother's Keeper Challenge.[6] She appeared in a 2015 documentary film, 3 1/2 Minutes, 10 Bullets, that explored the shooting.[7] Joining the Mothers of the Movement, McBath traveled around the United States to campaign for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election,[8] and spoke on her behalf at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.[9][10] She continued her advocacy by helping defeat legislation in the Florida Legislature that would expand campus carry and created a foundation, Champion In The Making Legacy, to help high school graduates continue their education and training.[11]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

While a variety of factors contributed to McBath's decision to run for office, she credits a breakfast meeting with State Representative Renitta Shannon, who urged her to run, with convincing her.[12]

After initially planning to run for the Georgia House of Representatives against incumbent Republican Sam Teasley in the 2018 elections, she decided after the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting to instead challenge Karen Handel, the incumbent Republican in the United States House of Representatives representing Georgia's 6th congressional district.[2][5][13][14] Although the 6th has historically tilted Republican, Handel was thought to be vulnerable. Donald Trump barely carried the district in 2016, and Handel won a hotly contested special election in 2017.

In the Democratic Party primary election on May 22, McBath led all challengers with an unofficial count of 36% of the vote. She faced Kevin Abel, the second place finisher, in a runoff election on July 24.[15] She defeated Abel with 53.7 percent of the vote.[16] McBath faced Handel in the general election in November and declared victory with 159,268 votes, surpassing Handel's 156,396 with 100% of precincts reporting.[17][16] She became the first Democrat to represent this district since it moved to Atlanta's northern suburbs in 1993. Indeed, she was the first Democrat to even garner 40 percent of the vote in a general election for the district since Gingrich left office in 1999.

Committee assignments[edit]

Caucus memberships[edit]

Election History[edit]

Democratic primary results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Lucy McBath 15,138 36.27
Democratic Kevin Abel 12,747 30.54
Democratic Bobby Kaple 10,956 26.25
Democratic Steven Griffin 2,901 6.95
Total votes 41,742 100.0
Democratic primary runoff results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Lucy McBath 14,285 53.7
Democratic Kevin Abel 12,303 46.3
Total votes 26,588 100.0
Georgia's 6th congressional district, 2018[19]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Lucy McBath 160,139 50.5
Republican Karen Handel (incumbent) 156,875 49.5
Total votes 317,014 100.0
Democratic gain from Republican

Political positions[edit]

Health care[edit]

McBath supports the Affordable Care Act. She would like to expand Medicaid in Georgia and would lower the age of Medicare eligibility to 55.[20] She supports Planned Parenthood and has said she supports funding programs that give women "autonomy over their reproductive decisions".[20]


McBath is critical of some of the 2017 Republican tax cuts, but she would like to make the temporary middle-class tax cuts permanent.[20]


McBath initially decided to run for Congress because she believed the government was not doing enough to prevent gun violence. She advocates for universal background checks before purchasing a firearm, as well as red flag laws to keep guns out of the hands of people who are strongly at risk of becoming violent.[20]

Personal life[edit]

McBath has survived two bouts of breast cancer.[21] She is married to Curtis McBath.[22] They live in Marietta.

In addition to her son Jordan, who was murdered in 2012, she had a son who died in 1993.[21]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Lucy McBath's Biography". Des Moines, IA: Vote Smart. Retrieved July 29, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Chavez, Nicole (May 20, 2018). "Lucy McBath refused to be quiet after her son's murder. Now she's running for Congress". CNNPolitics. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  3. ^ Mayer, Madhu (February 19, 2014). "Former Joliet resident morn's loss of son, lack of justice". The Times Weekly. Retrieved May 25, 2018.
  4. ^ a b King, Jamilah. "A White Man Shot and Killed Her Only Son. Now Lucy McBath Is Running So It Doesn't Happen to Anyone Else". Mother Jones (March/April 2018). Retrieved July 9, 2018.
  5. ^ a b Bluestein, Greg (March 6, 2018). "High-profile gun control advocate enters Georgia's 6th District race: Lucy McBath is challenging U.S. Rep. Karen Handel". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  6. ^ "To Raise, Love, and Lose a Black Child". The Atlantic. October 8, 2014. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  7. ^ Blair, Ian F. (June 23, 2015). "'3 1/2 Minutes, 10 Bullets' Examines the Murder of Jordan Davis". Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  8. ^ "Mothers Fueled by Personal Loss Turn Focus to Political Change". NBC News. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  9. ^ Drabold, Will (July 26, 2016). "DNC: Meet The Mothers Of The Movement". Time. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  10. ^ Torres, Kristina (July 26, 2016). "Marietta mom of shooting victim to address gun violence Tuesday at DNC". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  11. ^ Jaimee Swift (June 13, 2017). "Jordan Davis' Mother, Lucia McBath, Speaks On Gun Reform And Jordan's Legacy | HuffPost". Huffington Post. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  12. ^ Fulwood III, Sam. "There are black women not named Oprah running for office across the country". ThinkProgress. Retrieved June 16, 2018.
  13. ^ "'To not do anything is a tragedy': Mom who lost son to gun violence runs for Congress". ABC News. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  14. ^ Williams, Vanessa. "Citing Parkland shooting, anti-gun-violence activist is running for Congress in Georgia". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  15. ^ Ruiz, Sarah. "Gun Reform Advocate Lucy McBath Heads To Runoff For Georgia House Seat". Huffington Post. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  16. ^ a b Ruiz-Grossman, Sarah (July 24, 2018). "Gun Reform Advocate Lucy McBath Wins Democratic Nod For Georgia House Seat". Huffington Post. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  17. ^ Lucy McBath declares victory in 6th District race; Karen Handel not conceding
  18. ^
  19. ^ "November 6, 2018 General Election". GA - Election Night Reporting. Georgia Secretary of State. November 10, 2018. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  20. ^ a b c d "Where 6th Congressional District candidates stand". politics.myajc. Retrieved October 28, 2018.
  21. ^ a b Bonds Staples, Gracie (April 2, 2014). "'God has told me I will be OK'". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Atlanta, Georgia: Cox Media. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  22. ^ Cooper Eastman, Susan (February 24, 2014). "Parents of dead teen vow to fight Florida's self-defense law". Reuters. Retrieved May 24, 2018.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Karen Handel
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Georgia's 6th congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Ben McAdams
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Dan Meuser