Hot off the presses from Richard Winger at Ballot Access news, well as hot as anything can be that was published 3 days ago.
Last week, Rusty Kidd, Georgia’s only independent state legislator, was re-elected. He faced one opponent, a Democrat. Kidd won 57.3%-42.7%. Kidd was the only independent who was able to qualify for either house of the Georgia legislature by petition this year.
On November 5, Kidd was hospitalized because a small bone in his neck was broken, but he is expected to be back at work well before the session opens. He has been in a wheelchair for the past decade because of a past motorcycle accident.
Kidd is the son of Senator Culver Kidd, who is no longer living. Senator Kidd was the author of the 1986 Georgia ballot access reform bill that lowered the statewide petitions from 2.5% of the number of registered voters, to 1%, and also provided that parties that poll at least 1% of the number of registered voters for any statewide race are ballot-qualified for all statewide offices. It is because of Senator Kidd’s 1986 bill that the Georgia Libertarian Party has been on the ballot for the statewide offices, with no petitioning needed (except for the party’s initial petition in 1988), for over twenty years.
We Libertarians owe a lot to the Kidd family. As Mr. winger points out, Senator Culver Kidd was a rare politician who had an honest appreciation of ballot access issues in Georgia and did something about it. Please note that the ensuing crops of weasels have sat on their hands since 1986. They're quite happy with the fact that our current system guarantees perpetual power as long they can convince 26% of registered voters they are the man!
Also note that Rusty Kidd is our only Independent rep, and he was the only independent to survive the petitioning process that claimed 8 other victims prior to this years elections. Granted, he was a sitting rep with long service to his constituency, things that did not hurt his efforts at election. The reality is that he made the petitioning system work.
With all the party switching going on as democrats jump ship and head for supposedly safe water in the republican camp, perhaps some of the 100,000+ Libertarians in Georgia should petition Representative Kidd to jump from IndependantLand over to LibertyLand. Libertarian Rusty Kidd has a nice ring to it!