Democrat to challenge Linder in November

Political Notebook

John Linder may be even safer in the redrawn 7th Congressional District, but that doesn't mean the Duluth man won't have competition in the 2006 election.

Allan Burns, a political newcomer from Lawrenceville, has declared his candidacy for the position.

Burns is a Democrat who doesn't believe in the FairTax proposal, the idea of scrapping national income taxes in favor of sales taxes that has become the centerpiece of Linder's congressional service.

But Burns said he's even more interested in leading a discussion on America's energy dependence and a national health care system.

"I'd like to present a different viewpoint," he said. "I'm not sure John Linder speaks for a lot of folks."

For now, Burns is running a small-scale campaign centered on a Web site, www.allanburns.com. He has ambitions to drive around the district in his pick-up truck and talk to constituents. He said he even hopes to debate the seven-term congressman.

Linder's spokesman said the campaign wouldn't comment on opponents until after the qualifying period in April.

Kick-off event

This evening, legislators will be out getting last-minute information from constituents before the session starts Monday.

The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce has scheduled a legislative kick-off that some members of the delegation have described as a town hall meeting.

The event will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. today at the 1818 Club atop the Chamber building.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.