Ray Boyd is attempting to become the first independent candidate for Governor of Georgia since 1942. He needs a petition signed by 44,089 voters by July 13. Back in 1942, independent candidates didn’t need any signatures, but the law requiring a difficult petition was passed in 1943.
Boyd is now trying to put his petition form on the internet, so that his supporters can print it and begin using it. However, the Georgia petition form is a state form. It has place for 20 signatures, some on the front side and some on the back side. The back side also has a place for each sheet to be notarized. It is 8.5 inches by 14 inches.
Boyd recently asked the Secretary of State if he could redesign the petition form so that it is 8.5 inches by 11 inches, and is just a one-sided form. IF those changes were made, it would far easier for most home printers to print out the form. But on May 5, the Secretary of State said that Boyd cannot redesign the form. The Secretary of State also said that the Secretary himself cannot now redesign the form, because the change would need to be cleared by the Voting Rights Section of the U.S. Justice Department. Also the Secretary points out that other independent candidates may have been using the existing format already this year, and it would be impossible to change the form in the middle of the petitioning season.