Kyle Rinaudo, 21, an Acworth resident, announced his candidacy to represent Georgia House District 35 on Tuesday, and if elected would become Georgia’s youngest State Representative and the first Democrat elected from Acworth in two decades. Rinaudo graduated from Georgetown University in international politics and government with a focus on international law in May and wasted no time post-graduation to run for office.
He said, “all people, no matter how you look, who you love or where you come from deserve equal rights under the constitution.”
He will run against Rep. Ed Setzler, who has represented the communities of Acworth and Kennesaw in the Georgia House of Representatives since 2004 and has run without opposition the past two elections.
As an Acworth resident, Rinaudo says he understands the issues that the community has and plans to work toward viable solutions. Additionally, he served as the president of Acworth Young Aldermen during high school.
“My principles and my policies were formed from two places,” Rinaudo said. “My church and my mother.”
He is focusing on three main issues – healthcare funding, transportation and funding for public schools.
“To me, these are the things that matter because if you ask anyone around [Acworth] these are the things that matter to them, Republican or Democrat,” he said.
Rinaudo believes that Republican policies on the national and state levels are making it difficult for people to have quality and affordable healthcare. He believes healthcare is a right and that there are efficient ways that it can be handled. He wants to find a way to give everyone affordable healthcare and funding for healthcare.
Transportation is an important issue to him, and he says a solution is needed to make transportation around metro-Atlanta easier.
“Solutions that have been proposed traditionally in the past by the government we have now tend to be band-aids and not real investments in a transportation network that is going to be efficient, useful for all people, lessen commute times and make use more environmentally stable,” he said.
As a graduate of North Cobb High School, Rinaudo thinks he is in a position to see where improvements can be made in public education. While he says he is both pleased and thankful for the education he received from public school he notes that the constant challenge for teachers on the county and state level is that the funding is not there.
“If we would just let teachers actually teach and give them the resources to teach that would make public school education that much better,” he said.
“If you work hard, with good intentions, you can solve a lot of problems, you just have to stand up for your principles,” Rinaudo said. “The highest good we can achieve is service to others.”