Mara Zúñiga

Mara Zuniga

Mara Zúñiga, candidate for Mayor of Athens, Georgia

Mara Zúñiga is the former Treasurer of the Clarke County Republican Party and is running for Mayor of Athens in 2022.

Zúñiga’s website

Signature Issues

Back the Blue – Zúñiga feels that attempts by the current mayor and commission to establish civilian oversight over the police department have led to poor officer morale and have compromised public safety. Zúñiga opposes the Public Safety Oversight Board as well as attempts by progressive commissioners to find alternatives to policing or to reduce police budgeting.

Reduce Government Spending – Zúñiga believes the ACC government spends money “frivolously.” She has spoken out numerous times against the expense of a public restroom to be installed on College Avenue which was recommended in the 2016 Downtown Public Health and Safety study. She also opposes the official homeless encampment established recently, not only because of the expense but because it treats people “like cattle” and is a “safety concern.”

Opposition to Progressives – Zúñiga is a regular at city hall meetings where she often rails against progressives on the commission, calling them “Sandinistas.” She published an open letter in Classic City News in which she accused commissioners of listening only to a select few, such as members of the defunct progressive organization Athens for Everyone. She apparently did not realize that A4E had disbanded in January 2021 (although the last President of the organization continues to send out emails on occasion).

Experience

Zúñiga has served on the Local School Governance Team at Winterville Elementary and later at Cedar Shoals High School. She is the former Treasurer of the Athens GOP.

Interviews

Zúñiga went on Tim Bryant’s radio show in March to talk about her candidacy for mayor.

Political Affiliation

Zúñiga is affiliated with Steve Middlebrooks of Athens Clean and Safe PAC who endorsed her and spoke at her campaign launch event. Middlebrooks also donated $2,500 to Zúñiga’s campaign. Jason D. Boles, the registered agent of Athens Clean and Safe PAC, is “a Republican operative with ties to Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Donald Trump and an effort to infiltrate progressive groups in North Carolina,” according to Flagpole.

Update (5/9/22): Zuniga is being officially “recommended” by Athens Classic, an Athens Clean and Safe PAC partner organization.

Voting Record: Zúñiga takes Republican primary ballots.
Inferred Party: Republican

See other candidates running in the 2022 election in the Athens-area here.