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Georgia Judge Election Challenger Disqualified, Plans Appeal

Judge Scott McAfee addresses the lawyers during a hearing on charges against former President Donald Trump in the Georgia election interference case on Thursday, March 28, 2024 in Atlanta. Lawyers for

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has issued a final decision disqualifying a candidate, Tiffani Johnson, from running against Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee. The decision came after an administrative law judge found Johnson unqualified due to her absence at a hearing challenging her eligibility.

Johnson, a former prosecutor and defense attorney, plans to appeal the decision, stating confidence in ultimately prevailing. The challenge to Johnson's eligibility was filed by a Fulton County voter, citing Georgia's constitutional requirement for judges to reside in the area they serve.

The law mandates superior court judges to live in the district upon taking office, not just at the time of qualifying. Johnson's failure to appear at the hearing led to the conclusion of her disqualification by the administrative law judge, which was upheld by Raffensperger.

If a candidate is deemed unqualified, their name should be withheld from the ballot or removed from printed ballots. McAfee, who gained prominence for presiding over the prosecution of former President Donald Trump's election interference case, still faces another challenger, civil rights attorney Robert Patillo, in the upcoming nonpartisan election.

McAfee's role in overseeing the case involving Trump and 18 others accused of attempting to overturn the 2020 presidential election in Georgia has drawn significant attention. While four individuals have pleaded guilty, Trump and others maintain their innocence, with a trial date yet to be set by McAfee.

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