The responses to these questions were edited for length and clarity by the Georgia Decides team. Each candidate was allotted 150 words for each answer and some answers were trimmed in order to abide by that length requirement. Other edits were made to make sure readers can fully follow and understand the candidate responses.
Campaigning for: State Senate District 48
How does your background equip you for the job you are seeking?
I am running to be the next State Senator for District 48 in South Forsyth, North Gwinnett, and North Fulton County to deliver leadership that puts our families first. I have worked in the insurance industry and run a successful insurance business that helps small businesses and entrepreneurs successfully operate their businesses. Over the years I have seen the importance of having pro-business and pro-job growth policies and a favorable tax and regulatory structure to help our economy prosper and empower job creators.
As a parent to Fulton County Public School students, one of whom recently graduated and attends Georgia State University, I have experience navigating our local school and university systems and recognize that our state can do more to help parents and students thrive. I have also been civically active in my community, volunteering at my local food bank, working with organizations like the local Rotary club that help improve our quality of life.
As a Bangladeshi-American, I would offer a diverse voice in the State Senate, and will apply my skillset in business towards addressing many of the economic and quality of life challenges that our state is facing.
What role should government have in the lives of Georgians? How would you apply that philosophy to the job you are seeking?
America has always represented a place of freedom and opportunity, and I want to preserve those values in our state and our nation. I will always work to prevent excessive government interference or intrusion in the lives of Georgians. I will focus on policies that promote freedom and make life better for the people of District 48.
If you are elected (or re-elected), what problems will you spend the most time solving and why?
I will work to protect women’s rights and reproductive choice, preserve our Democracy, lower income and property taxes, address the rising costs of healthcare and prescription drugs, support law enforcement and reduce crime, protect local control so that our cities and counties have the freedom to represent their constituents, empower parents and students and strengthen our public schools, and work to create a pro-business and pro-jobs policies in Georgia that help us unleash our economic potential as a state.
Georgia is a politically diverse state. How will you work to represent Georgians whose political views differ from your own?
As a business owner and a longtime resident of Johns Creek, I have regularly interacted with community members with a wide variety of political views. District 48 is a politically balanced district and I believe it is important that the State Senator from this district considers political viewpoints and input from both sides of the aisle. I will regularly hold town hall meetings and provide other means of accessibility such as my telephone number and my website to ensure that constituents can give input as I consider legislation and public policy. I will focus on solutions, rather than furthering political divisions and gridlock that holds our state back.
Who has been the biggest influence on how you view state government and politics? What have you learned from this person?
I am grateful to have working relationships with a number of current and former State Legislators including Sen. Michelle Au, Rep. Angelika Kausche, and former State Sen. Curt Thompson. Working with and discussing the work of the legislature with these local leaders has given me important feedback and information about what it takes to be an effective member of the Georgia Legislature. Likewise, I have learned from local leaders like City Councilman Alvin Hicks of Sugar Hill and Congresswoman Carolyn Bourdeaux about the needs of communities in my district and how to be a good public servant.
Georgia has a lot to offer current and potential residents, but many parts of the state are becoming increasingly unaffordable. Please explain your proposed approach to address housing affordability through legislation and executive actions?
I want to work with local and state leaders toward finding market-based solutions to our housing affordability challenges. I support increasing the homestead exemption to lower property taxes, because high property taxes make it harder for homeowners to stay in their homes or for prospective homeowners to purchase a home. I would like to work with the private sector to propose incentives that will increase the construction of market-based housing that fits the needs of our workforce, including teachers, and police officers, our seniors, and young families.
Politics is often about compromise. How do you decide when to compromise and take small, incremental wins, and when to refuse compromise?
I believe on most issues we can find common ground and areas of agreement to create good policy for the people of Georgia. In the State Senate I will always work toward delivering wins and results that help the people of District 48. I will only refuse to compromise when it comes to protecting the people of our state and our rights.
There were politicians who questioned the outcomes of Georgia elections in 2018 and 2020. Do you think Georgia’s elections are secure and will you stand by the results?
Unlike my opponent, who served as a “fake elector” for Donald Trump and promoted the “big lie” about voter fraud in the 2020 election, I support and believe in our democracy. I believe Georgia’s elections are secure, and that the results of the 2018 and 2020 elections were accurate. I will stand by the results of the 2022 election as well and believe protecting our democracy is more important than supporting a political party or candidate. Denying election results and spreading conspiracy theories about our election has to lead a crisis that imperils the future of our nation.
In light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on abortion, state law and local enforcement authority will determine access to abortion. If elected, how will you use your authority in the state Senate to influence abortion access or enforcement of abortion restrictions?
I am against the overturning of Roe v. Wade and believe Republicans’ passage of a ban on abortion in Georgia puts the health and lives of women at risk, including my wife and daughters. I believe that women deserve the freedom to make their own healthcare decisions, and that it is not the role of government to interfere in deeply personal matters. I will support legislation that protects reproductive freedom and choice for women.
Are there any programs/legislation you’ve sponsored or created to help people with disabilities?
In my first term I would support and sponsor legislation that makes it easier for people with disabilities to find employment that pays good wages, and improve services and support for people with disabilities and their families. Too many people with disabilities and their families are facing barriers towards accessing care and services, whether in our healthcare system or our schools. I would work with leaders in the disability community towards good public policy on this issue.
Georgia closed out its budget year with a “likely record surplus, billions of dollars in federal aid and a growing economy.” Georgia spends more than half of this money on education and health care. What would you want to see in the budget in terms of spending or taxes?
I believe in fiscal responsibility and a balanced budget. We have an opportunity to return the state surplus into the pockets of taxpayers, and I am supportive of meaningful tax relief at this time of high inflation and increases in the cost of living. I would support additional funding to raise the pay of law enforcement officers and address crime, and to raise teacher pay, because currently the state of Georgia does not pay teachers in a manner that shows respect for the important work they do.
The Legislature often votes along party lines. When would you seek bipartisan action and what issues merit such consensus?
I will always work to deliver bipartisan action that improves our quality of life. Issues like delivering tax relief, infrastructure investments, reducing crime, improving education, and healthcare can all be resolved in a bipartisan manner if we have leaders who are willing to focus on doing good for the people of Georgia rather than scoring political points.