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Green Party LogoGeorgia Greens Welcome Barr's Commitment to 50 State Ballot Lines


Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

For further information, contact:
Bruce Dixon, 678-298-9463 x3
Press Secretary, Georgia Green Party

Greens Welcome Candidates' Commitment to Ballot Access Barr's commitment to 50 State Ballot Lines unprecedented

"We welcome Roseanne Barr's commitment to running on fifty ballot lines," said Adam Shapiro, chairman of the Georgia Green Party. "We invite all Greens and others concerned with creating a just and sustainable future to rally to our ballot access efforts so we can offer Georgia voters a meaningful way to cast their ballot this November."

After election cycles of being ignored as unobtainable, the Georgia Green Party leaders welcomed a statement made this weekend by Roseanne Barr, a candidate for the Green Party Presidential Nomination, in her address to an Assembly of the DC Statehood Green Party. Following up on a question about her support for DC Statehood, Ms. Barr told the Statehood Green Party event, " . . . part of why I am involved in running as President, running as a nominee for the Green Party candidate for the Presidency is for more ballot access, all across the board, in all fifty states."

"After four Presidential cycles of ignoring the ballot access needs of Georgia by those who have sought our nomination," said Al Herman, treasurer of the Party and himself a past write-in candidate for the U.S. Congress, "it is refreshing, indeed, to finally hear a Presidential candidate taking seriously the potential to be realized by putting the Green Party on the ballot in Georgia."

In an effort to exclude black candidates, already excluded by the all-white Democrat Primary of that day from the General Election as well, the Georgia General Assembly in 1943 adopted a 5% petitioning standard. The provision which survives to this day in the code at Title 21, Chapter 2, Section 170 et seq., served to erect the highest ballot access barrier in both the nation and the world. Adoption of the rule was 'necessary' said a member of the House leadership of the time, 'to keep Republicans and Communists off the Georgia ballot'. It has served since then to deny Georgia voters the opportunity to vote for many candidates, including some Presidential candidates who have been on as many as 44 state ballots across the country.

"The courts have refused to revisit their erroneous decision unsupported by the facts, in Jenness v Fortson, that 5% of voters are needed for 'a showing of a modicum of support' for a candidate. This barrier is ten times that experienced in the average state in the country," said Hugh Esco, a founding member of the state party who has three times run as a write-in for public office in Georgia, and once on the ballot in a Special Election in the 8th House District. "While unsuccessful in challenging these unconstitutional barriers in the courts, with the slate we're bringing together in 2012, we hope to rally the voting public to help us overcome them in the streets."

"This is an exciting time to be a Green in Georgia," said Party Chairman Shapiro. "While rumors are already swirling about our line up this year, we trust we will soon have news as candidates step forward with their announcements to join our 2012 slate."

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