Tue., October 9, 2012 3:41pm (EDT)

Dems Can't Remove Crawford From Ballot
By Jeanne Bonner
Updated: 2 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
State Rep. Rick Crawford (D-Cedartown) announced that he will become a Republican if he wins re-election in November but Georgia Democrats won't be able to remove him from the ballot as their party's nominee. That's the decision of Secretary of State Brian Kemp (GPB File Photo.)
State Rep. Rick Crawford (D-Cedartown) announced that he will become a Republican if he wins re-election in November but Georgia Democrats won't be able to remove him from the ballot as their party's nominee. That's the decision of Secretary of State Brian Kemp (GPB File Photo.)
Georgia Democrats won’t be able to strike from the November ballot a candidate who has said he will switch to the GOP if elected. Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp says the Democrats have no legal standing to remove Rep. Rick Crawford.

Kemp says the Democrats could have disqualified Crawford during the primary.

But he says once Crawford was certified by his party and nominated by voters during the July 31st primary election, no political party can strike him from the ballot.

The Democrats have argued that Crawford should be disqualified because he’s declared himself as Republican and hence is no longer the party’s candidate.

Experts say Crawford’s move is unusual. Other Georgia politicians have switched parties but typically after an election, not before.

Crawford of Cedartown first won election in 2006. He will face Republican Trey Kelley in the Nov. 6 election.