Bill Bozarth, former Director of Common Cause Georgia, has filed signatures with the Secretary of State’s office for an independent run in House District 54 – the Buckhead area seat vacated by Ed Lindsey. This would set up a battle between Bozarth and presumptive Republican nominee Beth Beskin, who was just a couple of votes away from winning the GOP nomination outright on May 20th. Her GOP opponent, John McCloskey, has suspended his campaign.
From Bozarth’s press release:
House District 54 Independent candidate Bill Bozarth reached a significant milestone in his campaign when he submitted his ballot petition signatures to the Georgia Secretary of State’s office on Friday, June 27th.
The petitions were gathered over a six month period, and involved the efforts of over forty volunteers who served as petition circulators for the campaign. Over 2200 signatures were in the package, well beyond the required number of 1776 – the official target given to the Bozarth campaign by the Secretary of State’s office late in 2013.
Bozarth acknowledged his volunteer force and his core group who helped contacting voters, as well as tracking and monitoring the signature gathering process, which by law must be conducted between January 9th and July 8th.
This is a very daunting process, and I now understand why few Independent and 3rd party candidates ever make it to the ballot in Georgia. However, we have been very careful to abide by all the rules, and I am quite confident that we will soon receive the news that our signatures are more than sufficient to get us on the ballot.
Bozarth met Friday with State Elections Division personnel who performed an initial high-level inspection before passing the 204-page package to the Fulton County Election Board, who is responsible for validating the petitions.
Commenting on the experience, Bozarth said:
The signature gathering process has given me insight to my neighbors I could never have gotten without knocking on doors. Our experience confirms to me that voters are seeking something different: an ethical candidate with proven experience who won’t simply go down to the gold dome and conduct business as usual. I plan to deliver against those heightened expectations as I always have in my work career and in my community service. This whole process has drawn on a host of friends and other community leaders, to whom I am most grateful.
With Ballot Access confirmed, Bozarth’s campaign will shift from signature gathering to securing votes for the November fourth General Election.