Keith Gross Administrative Hearing Summary

Southern Voice’s Matt Schafer has a good summary of the events surrounding the rescheduled Administrative Hearing concerning the eligibility of District 80 candidate, Keith Gross (D-Where?). Administrative Law Judge Michael M. Malihi must decide if Gross has been a resident of District 80 for at least one year prior to the Nov. 4 general election, and if Gross maintained three years of uninterrupted residency in Georgia prior to Nov. 4, 2008.

From March 2006 to November 2006, Gross maintained an address in a rented house in Washington, D.C. He said he shared the house with a “number of other folks,” and that, “I never lived there permanently. It was a place I crashed when I was in D.C.” Although Gross had an address, business and a boyfriend in Maryland, the then 21-year-old said he considered his home with his mother in Georgia.

Don’t pay attention to the facts! Please focus on Gross’ feelings about where his “true” home is.

[Attorney Anne Lewis] also established that Gross has never held a job in Georgia or paid state income taxes. The speeding tickets were an issue, Lewis said, because during 2007 Gross received a Florida ID card. Gross said it was so he could clear a speeding ticket. Lewis countered by saying he signed an oath swearing his residence was at his mother’s home in Florida.

How many mothers does he have? Regardless, at one point Lewis asked: “Despite never living there you decided that you wanted to move there and represent the district, isn’t that correct?” Gross’ response: “Yes.”


  1. Icarus says:


    If Gross withdraws, then the dems can have another primary, similar to the situation with Senator Carter? What happens if the judge determines that he was not qualified to run? Do the dems get a do-over?

  2. Rogue109 says:

    From the story:

    House Minority Whip Rep. Rob Teilhet (D-Smyrna) is involved with candidate recruitment. He said the party can replace a nominee, but not a potential nominee.

    “If a candidate is disqualified prior to becoming a party’s nominee, the party cannot replace the candidate,” he said. “If a candidate is disqualified after a primary, the party can replace him.”

  3. Chris says:

    So, it all depends on when the Judge issues his ruling. Is their guidance on when he has to do that?

  4. BlogDawg says:

    Handel’s ruling in SD 13, which is a new interpretation of the law, means the Dems would get a special primary.

    Goose, meet gander.

  5. Icarus says:

    Thanks for reading the story for me Rogue. I consider reading the backup story from a blog post a lot like reading directions.

    Rat/Chris and BlogDawg both hit at the reasoning behind my quesions. 1) Does the judge’s delay favor a dem replacement, and 2) does the ruling from the SOS favor the same?

    Perhaps the Republicans are better off if they drop the residency challenge and just direct mail the heck out of the district with takeoffs of Where’s Waldo.

  6. BlogDawg says:


    Handel’s ruling in SD 13 is the bigger problem now for Jacobs. Prior to that ruling, it had been the case that a pre-primary withdrawal meant no opportunity for a party to replace. If there was no one qualified at all in either party, a special election open to everyone was the remedy.

    What Handel is done is say a political party has a right to a special primary where their sole qualified candidate cannot continue. That means Dems in HD 80 get to re-open qualifying and have a special primary.

    Maybe Handel’s paying Jacobs back for being a Shyam Reddy, then Gail Buckner supporter in 06.

  7. Rogue109 says:

    How can someone discover if someone has paid state income taxes? Was that info available via a subpoena or an Open Records Request?


    I believe so but don’t 100% quote me on that. I leave it to greater minds to confirm!

  8. Chris says:

    Maybe Handel’s paying Jacobs back for being a Shyam Reddy, then Gail Buckner supporter in 06.

    Got anything to back that claim up? I highly doubt Secretary Handel would stoop to such petty crap as you suggest.

    I just spoke w/ Representative Jacobs, and he assures me that he voted for Karen Handel in the 2006 General Election.

  9. Chris says:

    And the situation between Sen. Carter’s special primary and the Gross disqualification is this:

    Had the Secretary of State’s office not called for a special primary, then that senate seat would have been unfilled following the General Election in November. Sen. Carter had neither primary nor general election opposition.

  10. BlogDawg says:

    Shyam Reddy, leading candidate for Georgia Secretary of State, today announced endorsements from a range of prominent legislators in the Georgia House and Senate.

    Senator Sam Zamarippa
    Rep. Dubose Porter
    Rep. Bob Bryant
    Rep. Mike Jacobs
    Rep. Rob Teilhet
    Rep. Brian Thomas
    Rep. Alisha Thomas-Morgan
    Rep. Pedro Marin
    Rep. Pat Gardner

  11. BlogDawg says:


    Can you name me a single other instance prior to SD 13 where qualifying has been opened for only one party because they lost their only qualified candidate?

    Every other time in history the situation with SD 13 has happened, i.e. resignation, withdrawal or disqualification has created or will create a vacancy, qualifying is opened to all.

    For example, when Sailor resigned and created a vacancy, qualifying was open to R’s even though they had not fielded a candidate for that office in the election.

    The precedent set by her decision is clear and its simple: parties that lose their only possible nominee prior to the primary get a new qualifying and special primary. You don’t get to limit it to just Republican withdrawals or disqualifications.

    Intellectual honesty is allowed in politics.

  12. Groseclose says:

    Blog Dog,
    I believe you are mistaken. O.C.G.A. § 21-2-134(d) provides: “(d) If the withdrawal, death, or disqualification of a candidate after nomination for any public office would at the time of such event result in there being no candidate for that office on the ballot in the general election, then the vacancy shall be filled by a special primary which shall be open only to the party of such deceased, withdrawn, or disqualified candidate and the office shall be filled by a special election as provided in Code Section 21-2-540.”
    Therefore, Ms. Handel is not making a “new ruling” in Sen. Carter’s case; she is following the law. On July 16, 2008, the day after the parties would have theoretically nominated a candidate, qualification begins Sen. Carter’s seat. Pursuant to this subsection, she is correct to limit it to the Republican party
    Conversely, in Representative Jacobs case , this subsection will not apply because there will be, regardless of Mr. Goss outcome, Rep. Jacobs will still be on the ballot in the General election.

  13. Taft Republican says:

    Did that really say Gross had a boyfriend in Maryland?

    I nearly swallowed my tobacco juice.

  14. Groseclose, I don’t believe nomination happens until after the primary, in this case. And if Carter qualifies this week, that’s before nomination.

    Chris F, you believe anything Jacobs tells you? He endorsed Cox because she “polls better in my district” (he wouldn’t know, he never polled it) and then a week before the primary when it became apparent Taylor would win he desperately tried to get the word to Taylor people that he had switched his endorsement.

    I’m not sure that guy knows who he votes for the week he does it much less two years later.

  15. BlogDawg says:

    Chrisishardcore is right…Carter wasn’t a nominee when he withdrew, so the code section Groseclose and the SOS are relying on doesn’t apply.

    All you have to do is read the words on the page.

    Pretty darn sloppy.

  16. juliobarrios says:

    Not sure Gross and Carter are apples to apples. Carter is voluntarily withdrawing, whereas there is a dispute as to whether Gross was even qualified to be on the ballot.

    I’m actually hoping Gross qualifies as he’ll provide much comedy and embarrassment over the next few months. This has got to be the tip of the iceberg.

    I’m thinking this thing could end with Gross campaigning in a Superman outfit maintaing he has the ability to outrun a bullet and stop a train.

  17. Here is another problem, Republicans:

    § 21-2-136

    No person shall be nominated, nor shall any person be a candidate in a primary, election, or special election, for more than one of the following public offices to be filled at any one election or special election: Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, State School Superintendent, Commissioner of Insurance, Commissioner of Agriculture, Commissioner of Labor, United States senator or representative in Congress, Public Service Commissioner, Justice of the Supreme Court, Judge of the Court of Appeals, members of the Senate and House of Representatives of the General Assembly, judge of superior court, district attorney, any elected county officer, and any elected municipal officer.


    So as you can see, the first law says once someone has the nomination they can be replaced. But, the second law says NO ONE can be nominated for two offices in the same cycle, and two of those offices include state senate and justice of the superior court.

    So it’s pretty clear, if you actually read the law (they teach this kind of stuff in college, which I know about, and law school, or I’m told) that Carter hasn’t secured the nomination, and therefore he can’t be replaced in the manner that Handel/Randy Evans proposes. Nice try though, guys.

    If you read the rest of the code, it’s pretty clear that “nomination” occurs in the primary. So what if Carter was the only one on the ballot, he still needs to get 1 vote in a primary to officially be nominated (and replaceable), and votes for a candidate who is withdrawn will be void and not counted. So the SOS/Elections Board won’t be able to count a single vote in that primary for any candidates: no nominee!

    Check this out:
    § 21-2-151. Authorization for political party primaries

    (a) A political party may elect its officials and shall nominate its candidates for public office in a primary. Except for substitute nominations as provided in Code Section 21-2-134 and nomination of presidential electors, all nominees of a political party for public office shall be nominated in the primary preceding the general election in which the candidates’ names will be listed on the ballot.


    All of the “substitute nominations” referenced above in the other code section can only occur AFTER a primary, not before, so no dice. Nice try, though.

  18. Bill Simon says:

    Actually, I think “citing” legal sections of OCGA as you have done may constitute “practicing law” and unless you actually have passed the bar, I’m not sure what you’ve done is legal, in the legal sense. 😉

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