JOHNS CREEK, GA — In addition to voting for president and vice president of the United States in the Nov. 3 general election, voters in North Fulton, will choose other candidates to represent them, including the seat for Georgia Representative District 50.
Incumbent Angelika Kausche will be running against Jay Lin to represent District 50, which encompasses Johns Creek.
As part of its coverage of the 2020 election, Patch has invited the candidates in contested races to participate in our election profile series. We will continue to update the profiles with links to responses to our questionnaire.
Incumbent Angelika Kausche
Age (as of Election Day)
Angelika Kausche: 58
Jay Lin: 56
Angelika Kausche: Democrat
Jay Lin: Republican
Angelika Kausche: Fabian Kausche, husband; Hannah Kausche, daugther, Ines Kausche, daugther
Jay Lin: My wife, Mimi, and I have two children, son-in-law and a daughter-in-law.
Does anyone in your family work in politics or government?
Angelika Kausche: other than myself, no
Jay Lin: My son-in-law is active duty military as an Army Ranger.
Angelika Kausche: MBA and MA in Org. Communication
Jay Lin: Chung-Yu Institute of Technology, Taiwan
Angelika Kausche: Retired adjunct professor
Jay Lin: General Contractor
Angelika Kausche: www.angelikaforgeorgia.com
Jay Lin: jaylinforga.com
Previous or Current Elected or Appointed Office
Angelika Kausche: State Representative, Georgia HD50
Jay Lin: Johns Creek City Council 2015-2019
The single most pressing issue facing our community, and this is what I intend to do about it.
Angelika Kausche: The single most pressing issue facing our district is healthcare. Georgia was already one of the most underinsured states in the country before the pandemic hit, and the result of the poor handling of this crisis has exacerbated the issue. Many Georgians are struggling to receive the most basic healthcare and many are afraid of rising premiums if they visit their doctors. People who catch the virus may be given the status of having a pre-existing condition, making the concept of affordable healthcare an even bigger uncertainty at this time. I’m a proponent of filling the Medicaid coverage gap so that families are able to get the care they need for physical ailments, contagious diseases, mental illnesses, and substance abuse.
Jay Lin: The most pressing issue facing our district is rebounding from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. As a business owner myself, I believe I have the experience to find ways the government can encourage job growth, not stifle it. I will also make sure that we do not resort to raising taxes or increasing regulations that make it more difficult to do business in Georgia and risk our status as the #1 state to do business.
Do you support Black Lives Matter and what are your thoughts on the demonstrations held since the death of George Floyd and the shooting of Jacob Blake?
Angelika Kausche: Absolutely. There is a lot of pain in our Black and Brown communities right now, and we must come together as a nation to ensure that every member of our society is treated equally under the law. I was proud to participate in the demonstrations right here in Johns Creek. The people who came out to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement were from all ages, races, ethnicities, and political parties. There was a sense of unity against wrongdoing, and it was inspiring to watch Americans exercise their First Amendment rights.
Jay Lin: I stand with everyone in our community in condemning racism and police brutality. I can tell you that I believe black lives matter, but I do not support the radical movement that has been tainted by too many bad actors.
What are your thoughts on the campaign to "defund" the police?
Angelika Kausche: I do not support this. I want the best and brightest people in our community to be in law enforcement. That means advocating for professional wages for police just like with every other profession and holding them to high professional standards. I also believe in investing in mental health training programs for our first-responders so that they can successfully address and process in a healthy manner the numerous tragedies and difficult situations they face at work. I will also continue to advocate for the proper allocation of resources so that mental health crises are treated by professionals rather than being criminalized by the government. And I will be adamant about appropriate accountability when officers fail to uphold their oath to serve and protect.
Jay Lin: I am completely against the Defund the Police movement and think it is a serious threat to our community and our state.
What are your thoughts on the state and national response to the coronavirus pandemic? Do you favor such measures as limiting operation of non-essential businesses or restricting indoor/outdoor dining? And do you favor a nationwide mask mandate?
Angelika Kausche: The national and state response to the pandemic has been disastrous leading to way more suffering and deaths than necessary. On the federal level, there is an indubitable lack of trust between the public and the administration in the White House. A lack of tests and personal protective equipment for our medical professionals led to countless grave situations. When my husband tested positive for COVID, and shortly after I showed symptoms as well, I was told to assume I had it too instead of “wasting a test on an obvious case”. The amount of stories coming from doctors and nurses who were forced to use the same mask for weeks, or had to implore friends for disinfecting supplies rattled me. At the State level, Gov. Kemp made us one of the last states to attempt to control the virus and one of the first to open up. Georgia kept making national headlines for all the wrong reasons, with the White House at one point stating that Georgia was leading the nation in new infections and criticizing Governor Kemp’s handling of the situation. As of now, there have been over 7000 deaths in Georgia, and over 308,000 cases, and these numbers are nothing to be proud of. I favor limiting operation of non-essential businesses in areas with high infection rates. I support a statewide mask mandate until we can confidently say we have COVID19 numbers under control in Georgia, and then give mayors and municipalities the right to determine the need of mask mandates and other restrictions.
Jay Lin: The national and state response proved that no one was prepared for a pandemic. It is not a partisan issue and we have learned a lot this year as to what works and what does not. I support any measures that state and national health officials recommend to stop the spread of COVID-19 but also believe that every community is impacted differently and there should be some local control over how to deal with the spread. Georgia continues to limit some gatherings and encourage masks and our numbers show that it has worked. As to a national mask mandate, it has been a well-debated topic that many experts agree is unconstitutional. Even Joe Biden had to rescind his pledge to enact a national mask mandate because of constitutional reasons. That said, I support mask wearing in situations that warrant an extra layer of safety.
What are the critical differences between you and the other candidates seeking this post?
Angelika Kausche: In short, both of us present very different visions for Georgia. I am focused on policies that move Georgia forward while my opponent is simply throwing around labels. I believe that the state needs to expand Medicaid and bring back our crucial tax dollars from sitting idle in Washington to help Georgians have access to doctors, while my opponent has stated without evidence that there are already enough safety nets for families who are met with the financial stress of illnesses. I believe that women should be able to make healthcare choices for themselves, and that the medical privacy of families should be protected, while my opponent opposes legal access to abortion even in the case of rape or incest. I am a firm believer in equality for all, and that same-sex couples should have the same rights and dignity under the law as heterosexual couples. My opponent has labeled same-sex marriage “moral bankruptcy” and indicated that the government should only recognize marriage between a man and a woman. There is also a significant difference between the priorities of the two campaigns - I have refrained from holding indoor in-person events and suspended canvassing operations for the sake of people’s safety, while my opponent is often seen knocking on doors of voters without wearing a mask.
Jay Lin: I am the only candidate with decades of experience owning and operating a small business in our district. I am also the most experienced candidate when it comes to serving this community as an elected official. And I am the only candidate that has a proven track record of working across the aisle to get things done for Johns Creek.
If you are a challenger, in what way has the current board or officeholder failed the community (or district or constituency)?
Jay Lin: My opponent has failed to build strong relationships with those on the other side of the aisle in order to deliver any meaningful results for Johns Creek. We need a bridge builder that is more concerned with getting results than with political gamesmanship.
Describe the other issues that define your campaign platform:
Angelika Kausche: As a former educator and professor, public education is a big part of my platform. When I first ran for office, Georgia public schools had not been fully funded in over 20 years. Now that the majority party slashed almost a billion dollars from K-12 education, it is imperative that the State find new and innovative ways to bring in revenue to fund our public schools. My platform includes increased teacher pay, decreased class sizes, an appropriate amount of standardized testing, and keeping our schools equipped to handle pandemic outbreaks and gun violence.
Jay Lin: Freedom, Safety, and Prosperity for all Johns Creek residents.
What accomplishments in your past would you cite as evidence you can handle this job?
Angelika Kausche: I am an immigrant from Germany, worked in international banking prior to relocating to the U.S. and subsequently worked as an adjunct professor at various colleges in MI and NC before we moved to Georgia. With that I have international and national business and academic experience. I have already successfully represented this district for the last two years. My first term in the House of Representatives as a member of the minority party had many successes. I co-sponsored several bills including one that would keep firearms out of the hands of people who have shown violent behavior, and worked successfully across the aisle with Republicans to pass anti-vaping legislation. I worked closely with grassroots organizations here in Johns Creek to meet the needs of the individual communities. I made sure to attend as many local events as possible to ensure that access to me and my office did not seem out of reach to any of my constituents. I also elevated several community leaders and organizations that are doing incredible things for the residents of Georgia. In addition, I supported an untold number of individuals in my district in their efforts to obtain information, unemployment support, help them address legal status and immigration issues and many other areas where I as an elected official could help them find and access the resources they needed.
Jay Lin: While on the Johns Creek City Council I was able to keep taxes low while still investing in our community to enhance Johns Creek residents' quality of life. We have been able to protect our great schools and ensure public safety. I was also able to bring the Veterans Memorial and cricket fields to our local parks.
If you win this position, what accomplishment would make your term in office as a success?
Angelika Kausche: We need to invest in a pandemic recovery that is based on science and public health. To do that expanding access to affordable, quality healthcare would be my main priority. Too many of our friends and neighbors are struggling, and many are afraid that one illness or accident could bankrupt them. I’d like to make sure that affordable healthcare isn’t something that people are constantly stressed about.
Jay Lin: I would like to restore full funding to our schools and make sure that our unemployment rate gets back down to below where it was before coronavirus hit.
Why should voters trust you?
Angelika Kausche: Politics is about people, not power. Regardless of who you are or where you come from, I will represent everyone to the best of my ability - and have proven over the last years that I live by this maxime. I believe in science and that we need to make policy decisions based on science and facts. I am a proud Democrat and I have never attempted to hide anything about myself while proving through my work in the Georgia Assembly that I am willing to work across the aisle for important legislation. I fully realize that there are many people in my district who may not agree with me on every issue, but I have never disguised my positions or my identity in an attempt to be more palatable to a certain group of voters. I have made every effort to be transparent and accessible by sending out regular newsletters and social media communications. I have explained my votes on controversial bills, and been open about my opinions on topics that come up in district.
Jay Lin: I would ask voters to look at my record of fighting for good schools, low taxes, and public safety. I am a bridge builder that is focused on results. I would also encourage anyone who would like to speak with me to call me directly at 770-527-3298 before they cast their vote.
What are your views on fiscal policy, government spending and the use of taxpayer dollars in the office you are seeking?
Angelika Kausche: I believe in strategic spending. Right now, Georgia taxpayers are paying into Medicaid with every paycheck, and those dollars are sitting at the federal level or being sent to other states, while Georgia’s people and hospitals struggle. That is a complete waste of taxpayer dollars and not good policy. I would also like the state to increase funding to deal with mental health and substance abuse issues. We can mitigate the losses from the pandemic by modernizing and improving the tax code and rolling back special-interest tax breaks to fund innovative economic development programs.
Jay Lin: I will spend every tax dollar as if it were my own. As a business owner, I know that sometimes you need to think outside of the box in order to get the results you need. We cannot just write a blank check and incur billions of dollar in debts. I am fiscally conservative and will make sure no tax dollar is ever wasted. We can do this without sacrificing our quality of life in Georgia.
Is there any reason you would not serve your full term of office, other than those of health or family?
Angelika Kausche: No
Jay Lin: I plan to serve my full term and cannot think of any reason I would not do so.
The best advice ever shared with me was:
Angelika Kausche: “Vote your conscience, then vote your district, then vote your party”
Jay Lin: Stand up for what you believe in, even when it's not easy. Always finish what you start. Be accountable for your actions and don't make a promise you know you can't keep.
What else would you like voters to know about yourself and your positions?
Angelika Kausche: I have truly enjoyed the honor given to me over the last two years to serve the people of Johns Creek. I am excited about the opportunity to continue to serve you. Please feel free to call or email me with any questions, ideas, or concerns you may have. My website is www.angelikaforgeorgia.com, and I hope you and your family are staying safe.
Jay Lin: I am a common sense candidate that will fight for the things you and your family care about. I will protect our status as a great state and community in which to do business. I will make sure we continue to have great public schools. And I will make sure that radical movements like Defund the Police do not take hold in our community.