Debbie Dooley backed down on her vow to take on embattled Sen. Don Balfour in this year's primary.
Dooley, the Dacula woman who became a leader in the tea party movement, filed ethics complaints against Balfour, piling on to allegations he already faced about accepting mileage reimbursements from his Snellville home to the Capitol on days when lobbyists said they paid for meals out of the state.
Earlier this week, she said she was contemplating a primary challenge, but she did not file paperwork to be added to the ballot.
"I am committed to working for change in this district, as well as seeing ethics charges filed against Senator Balfour come to a just conclusion," Dooley said, but added that work demands and a conflict with her position on the board of the TEA Party Patriots kept her from the ballot.
She also said the ethics complaint was being distorted as evidence of political ambitions, and she did not want the situation to end with a slap on the wrist.
"There is a general feeling among tea party activists that the Legislature is like a good ole boys club where it is strongly encouraged that incumbents not be challenged in primaries and wrong-doing of other legislators is covered up," Dooley said.
She added that she has given her support to Steve Ramey, a member of the Founding Fathers Tea Party Patriots, who ran for a House seat in 2010.
In addition to Ramey, Travis Bowden also challenged Balfour in the Republican primary. Scott Drake qualified last week as a Democrat, setting up a November contest for the primary winner.
Sign up for transportation discussion
Gwinnett residents have a couple of weeks to sign up for a "Wireside Chat" to discuss the upcoming Regional Transportation Referendum.
A series of the talks, inspired by President Roosevelt's "Fireside Chats," are being conducted through the Atlanta Regional Commission.
During the 6:15 p.m. online telephone conferences will allow people to ask questions of Gwinnett Chairwoman Charlotte Nash and Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson, who were part of a roundtable who devised the project list for the proposed tax.
Participants are asked to register in advance to receive maps and other materials they can refer to during the hour-long call. All questions will be answered, either live or as a follow-up e-mail or phone call.
To register, visit www.wiresidechats.com, or call 404-463-3227.
Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.
Camie Young can be reached via email at email@example.com.
For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/news/local/politics.