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Candidate in row with state party
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Lynda Morse said she has stopped handing out altered Georgia Republican Party door hangers that advertise her write-in campaign for the Bryan County Board of Commission seat after she was asked to do so by a lawyer from the statewide party.
On Oct. 14, Morse received a letter from Anne Lewis, the general council for the Georgia Republican Party, telling her to stop distributing altered Georgia Republican Party door hangers.
The altered hangers encourage voters to vote for Republican candidates in state-wide elections but have one sticker with a picture of Morse and U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston and another label that lists Morse as “Republican * WRITE-IN candidate.”
Lewis, of Strickland, Brockington, Lewis LLC law firm in Atlanta, explained on Monday that Morse represented herself as the Republican candidate for the District 4 seat when someone else won the primary.
“She’s not the Republican candidate in that race,” Lewis said. “We only have one, we can only have one in every race, and that’s Butch Broome.”
Morse, in an e-mail, wrote that she has never described herself as “the” official Republican candidate.
“I am a Republican by party affiliation,” she wrote, “in this election I am a Republican who is a Write-In-Candidate.”
The Georgia Republican Party also said it would take legal action if Morse did not stop handing out the door hangers, Lewis wrote in the Oct. 14 letter. On Monday, Lewis said she couldn’t comment further.
Morse said she has complied with the attorney’s request. In a written statement, she claimed that she didn’t know that what she was doing was wrong and saw no harm in promoting Republican candidates with her included.
“There was no attempt to deceive anyone,” Morse wrote. “Full disclosure was quite evident on my label.”  
Lewis wrote in the cease and desist letter that Morse has every right to be a write-in candidate, but she is misleading voters to think that she running on the Republican ticket.
“Just to be clear, you are not authorized to alter the Georgia Republican Party door hanger (or any other material produced and paid for by the Georgia Republican Party) nor are you authorized to represent that you are the republican candidate for that office,” the letter reads. “Do not distribute any more of the altered door hangers and please return all of the door hangers still in your possession to the Bryan County Republican Party Office immediately.”
Morse wrote in an e-mail that she did return the flyers.
Also this week, the Bryan County Republican Party published a letter from Sue Everhart, the chairman of the Georgia Republican Party, as an advertisement in The News, assuring Broome that he is the only candidate that the state Republican Party supports. The letter was dated Oct. 14, according to Lewis.
The controversy over Morse’s flyers started last week when Larry Barker, the head of the Bryan County Republican Party, found out that Morse was affixing the stickers on the door hangers. He said that he alerted the Georgia Republican Party on Wednesday, Oct. 13.
Barker declined to comment on the situation, saying that the dispute involves state Republican Party material and rules.
Broome also declined to comment, saying that he didn’t want to get involved in the situation even though he knows it does affect him.
“That is between her and the state GOP,” he said.
Morse qualified in September as a write-in candidate for the District 4 seat in the Bryan County Board of Commissioners race after her husband, Chris Morse, lost the primary against Broome in July. The election is Nov. 2.
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