It’s crunch time for Georgia’s conservative activists eying a realignment of government through the a deliberate purge of the state’s old guard.
Qualifying for the full slate of state legislative races, 234 in total, and the state’s 14 U.S. Congressional seats is underway Wednesday morning with the open of business. For tea party activists, it’s a day of reckoning.
“You’re going to see a lot of challengers statewide,” Debbie Dooley, an early organizer of the Atlanta tea party, told the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
Dooley, who has been waging a campaign of withering public sentiment against GOP Senate rules committee chief Don Balfour, said she might reluctantly launch a primary bid of her own.
If betrayed by the political grapevine that holds ex-state Rep. Clay Cox will mount a challenge to Balfour, Dooley says the transition from activist to aspirant is on the immediate horizon.
“I don’t really want to because of my job,” Dooley said Wednesday. “I just don’t want Balfour to go unopposed.”
Balfour, whose steady fundraising clip has built the largest campaign war chest of the incumbent class, has run unchallenged in seven of the last nine elections.
UPDATE: The AJC’s Aaron Gould Sheinin has a running tally of those who qualify today, though the process has been temporarily delayed by a frayed website of the Secretary of State.
- James Richardson