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Watchdog calls for indicted Sen. Don Balfour's resignation

Sen. Don Balfour

Sen. Don Balfour

Government watchdogs called for the resignation of indicted Sen. Don Balfour on Tuesday, a week after the legislator was suspended from service.

“Sen. Balfour deserves due process for the criminal actions for which he has been accused,” said William Perry, the executive director of Common Cause Georgia, who wrote Balfour a letter asking him to resign. “However, service in the Georgia General Assembly comes with a higher standard and that standard cannot be met with the cloud caused by his continued service in office.”

Balfour faces more than a dozen charges, including theft by taking, involving false per diem claims for work he claimed at the state Capitol at a time when lobbyists disclosures show he was out of stay. Last week, Gov. Nathan Deal suspended the Snellville senator, and Republican leadership removed him from their caucus.

Perry praised the Senate leadership for those actions.

“Removing a colleague from such positions of power is not something that many public officials are willing to do so; they should be applauded for taking this action,” Perry said.

Attempts to reach Balfour and his attorney after business hours Tuesday were unsuccessful.