By John Schaffner

Mary Norwood

Mary Norwood, who is seeking to run as an independent candidate for Fulton County Commission Chair, filed a request July 21 for a Superior Court declaratory judgment to reverse the Fulton Board of Registration and Elections’ decision not to allow Norwood to be on the ballot in November.

In the filing, Norwood’s lawyers argue that the board had discretion to allow Norwood on the ballot under Georgia law and should have exercised that discretion based upon the board’s finding that there was no harm from Norwood filing her notice of candidacy on July 2 four hours after the noon deadline.

“Well over 30,000 signatures gathered in 90 days speak volumes about what the people want,” commented Norwood. “Voters clearly want to see more choice on the ballot.”

This is the second time Norwood’s campaign has gone to court seeking a ruling to get on the November ballot.

On July 1, Superior Court Judge Jerry W. Baxter dismissed Norwood’s request for a court ruling on whether her campaign properly collected thousands of signatures. At that time, the judge said Norwood’s lawsuit did not create a legal controversy on which the court could rule.

On July 13, Norwood’s campaign filed more than 33,000 signatures on nearly 3,200 notarized pages with Fulton County’s Department of Registration and Elections in support of the Buckhead resident’s independent bid. Norwood was required to obtain 22,598 signatures of registered Fulton County residents in order to run as an independent in the November election.

“We believe we will have enough valid signatures to meet Fulton County’s requirements to add my name to the ballot for Fulton County Commission Chair, which is vastly more than was required of my opponents,” added Norwood. “We simply want a fair shot at getting on the ballot. Let the people decide who should run the commission in November.”

John Schaffner was founding editor of Reporter Newspapers.