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Editorial: Roy Barnes for governor

In the days leading up to the July 20 primary, you couldn’t turn on the television without being inundated with ads from Republicans running for governor who wanted to tell you how anti-gay they are.

This year’s election season has been particularly bad, largely due to the particular Republicans on the ballot.

Karen Handel supported domestic partner benefits and was a member of the pro-gay Log Cabin Republicans during her campaigns for Fulton County Commission. But she denied those stands when she ran successfully for Secretary of State in 2006, and continues to deny her past support in her current bid for governor.

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Results in other primary races of LGBT interest

• State Senate District 39: Incumbent Sen. Vincent Fort, one of the most outspoken LGBT rights advocates in the General Assembly, faced a challenge in the Democratic primary from Graham Balch, who also sought gay votes. According to unofficial results from the Secretary of State website, Fort garnered 6,881 votes, or 67.7 percent of the vote, compared to 3,284 votes, or 32.3 percent for Balch.

Fort’s campaign included an LGBT Initiative chaired by state Rep. Karla Drenner (D-Avondale Estates), who was Georgia’s first openly gay state lawmaker and is running unopposed for her sixth term, and longtime community activist Craig Washington.

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GA Voice Primary Election Guide

This year, Georgia elects a new governor, every state constitutional office, and every seat in the state legislature, plus many other offices ranging from U.S. Senate to county commissions.

The upcoming July 20 primaries will determine which Republicans and Democrats will battle it out in the Nov. 2 general election. A few November races also include a Libertarian or independent candidate as well.

The primary ballot includes three openly gay candidates: Joan Garner and Keisha Waites for Fulton County Commission District 6, and Keith Gross for State House District 80.

And while few candidates for the state’s top offices have openly campaigned for LGBT votes, many have long records — some positive, more negative — on issues that impact our community.