Challenges to Mathis Wright’s candidacy rejected

Published 11:15 am Wednesday, April 6, 2022

The Sumter County Board of Elections declined to accept or hear the three challenges to Mathis Wright’s candidacy for Sumter County Board of Commissioners District Four seat. The vote passed unanimously.

According to the chairperson, Shirley Latimore, Georgia Law sets a time of two weeks in which a challenge can be submitted. Although one challenge was submitted within the timeframe, the challenger does not live in District 4 and therefore is considered invalid. The other two challengers submitted their challenge on March 30, 2022. The qualifying deadline for the race was March 11, 2022, at 12pm, making their challenge outside of the time limitations to file a challenge. The Americus Times Recorder was able to procure one of the challenges and it argued Wright’s supposed conflict to serve as both the deputy coroner as well as having pending litigation against a Sumter County governing board.

With challenges thrown out due to residency or deadline issues, no hearing was heard on the appropriateness of Wright to run for the office. Wright, running as a democrat will face David Baldwin who qualified as a republican for the position in November. The other seat is for District Two, where Mark Waddell is running unopposed as a republican. Being there is only one candidate representing the qualifying parties for the seats, there will be no contended races on the primary ballot.

The Sumter County Board of Elections is made up of Valarie Roberts, Carson Walker, Shirley Latimore, Rhonda Reddick and Marty McDonald. They meet the first Tuesday of every month at 4:30pm in the Commissioners’ Board Room at the courthouse. Meetings are open to the public.