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|Gay candidates and other state and local races to watch|
|by Laura Douglas-Brown|
|May 14, 2010 00:00|
With the April 30 deadline for major party candidates to qualify for this year’s elections now passed, LGBT voters have several races to watch for both the Georgia General Assembly and the Fulton County Commission.
Georgia’s two openly gay state lawmakers remained unopposed for new terms. State Rep. Karla Drenner (D-Avondale Estates), Georgia’s first openly gay state lawmaker, is running for her sixth term. State Rep. Simone Bell (D-Atlanta), the first openly lesbian African-American state legislator in the nation, seeks her first full term after a special election last fall.
Other races of interest include three gay men seeking seats in the state legislature, two lesbians running against each other for Fulton County Commission, and several gay rights allies seeking to remain in or return to politics.
• Senate District 47: Tim Riley, a gay mental health counselor who lives in Athens, is running as a Democrat for the same seat he sought in 2008. Four GOP candidates qualified to run for the seat; Riley will face the winner of the July 20 Republican primary in November.
Fulton County Commission
• District 1 (Chairman): Incumbent Chair John Eaves, a Democrat, was endorsed by Georgia Equality in the past. Former Atlanta City Council member Mary Norwood, who drew strong support from LGBT voters in her bid for mayor last year, is running for the post as an independent. She must qualify by petition and is holding a “Sign One and Take One” event at 5 p.m. May 19 at Amsterdam, a gay bar. Republican Steve Broadbent is also in the race.
Dyana Bagby contributed
Top photo: Joan Garner (left) and Keisha Waites, both lesbians, face off for Fulton County District 6. (Courtesy photos)
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