Cynthia McKinney registers to vote in California as Green, moves toward Presidential bid

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Hat Tip: By Jeffry Scott, Atlanta Journal Constitution

Former Georgia congresswoman Cynthia McKinney seems to have ended any notions of running again for state office in Georgia and has registered to vote in California where she is still considering a run for president on the Green Party ticket.

In recent weeks McKinney — who last month posted a letter on her Web site declaring that she had no interest in the Green Party nomination — has appeared at fund-raisers in California, where a group named Run! Cynthia! Run! is trying to draft her as the party’s candidate in California.

McKinney’s name already is on the ballot in California, along with six other Green Party candidates, including Ralph Nader. She and the others were nominated by a Green Party convention in September in California.

The fact that McKinney’s name remains on the ballot has given supporters hope, said John Morton, a California Green Party delegate.

“She’s got us all guessing, but she hasn’t removed her name, and that’s a good sign. I talked to her last week, and she said she’s very interested but not ready to make an announcement.”

Two weekends ago McKinney attended a rally with anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who is running for the San Francisco seat held by Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy’s Pelosi. Sheehan told the crowd that McKinney is running for president.

McKinney, who served five often-provocative terms as a U.S. congresswoman representing voters in DeKalb County and roughly the southeastern section of metro Atlanta, has been registered to vote in Marin County since May 4, 2007, according to records at the Marin County Registrar of Voters. Marin is a county north of San Francisco.

According to the Georgia secretary of state’s office, she is still registered to vote in Georgia, but has not voted since December 2006. Secretary of state director of media Matt Carrothers said state law does not require she notify the state that she is now a registered voter in California.

“But since she is registered to vote there, she cannot vote in Georgia,” Carrothers said.

Vicki Leidner, chairwoman of the Feminst Issues Group of the San Francisco Green Party, hosted a fund-raiser for McKinney two weekends ago when, she said, “we raised a good chunk of money, especially for someone who hasn’t declared she is running.”

Leidner said McKinney has sought to keep a low profile in moving to the San Francisco area, where she has been accepted as a doctoral student at the University of California at Berkeley. “After you been through the things she’s been through, you learn to be a little quiet about things,” Leidner said.

Brent McMillan, political director for the national Green Party, said the party also is seeking to get her name on the ballot in Illinois. “California and Illinois are the first- and second-largest Green Party states.”

McKinney is not yet registered as a presidential candidate in Illinois, and, by law, cannot register before Oct. 29. To register she must first submit a petition with between 3,000 and 5,000 signatures to be eligible.

California delegate Morton said McKinney has a place in Marin County but he believes she still divides her time between San Francisco and Atlanta.

“We expect her to move out here by the first of the year,” he said. “She still has matters to deal with back in Atlanta.” Morton said he believes McKinney, who the Green Party courted to run in 2004, is the perfect Green candidate.

“She’s very outspoken, and even when she was a Democrat she didn’t follow the dictates of the party,” he said. “She has a Green mind, believes in social justice, is against the war.”

McKinney could not be reached for comment.

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Evangelist Bynum’s $4.5 million dollar home on auction block

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Hat Tip:  Bt Mike Morris, Atlanta Journal Constitution

Evangelist Juanita Bynum’s $4.5 million South Georgia compound is scheduled to be auctioned off next month for nonpayment of property taxes, officials said.

Ware County Tax Commissioner Steve Barnard filed a lien against the 23.6-acre property owned by Juanita Bynum Ministries on June 7, citing failure to pay $32,007.56 in 2006 property tax.

According to the lien, a $3,200 penalty and $2,240 in interest is also owed.

It’s the latest legal drama involving the nationally known Pentecostal evangelist, who has been in the news in recent weeks after alleging she was beaten by her estranged husband, Thomas Weeks.

Barnard said Tuesday that the property, on St. Bernard Trail near Waycross, will be sold at auction on Nov. 6 on the steps of the Ware County Courthouse. The auction will be canceled if Bynum Ministries, which still has ownership, pays the full amount before that date, he said.

Bynum’s Waycross-based ministry bought the property for $4.5 million last year.

Barnard said there is a 7,487-square-foot house, a 6,748-square-foot house and a 1,366-square-foot house on the property. Bynum lives in one of the homes, he said.

Barnard said someone from Bynum’s office called him last month, “wanting to know if they could set up a payment plan, and I told them if she sent me $25,000, I’d take it out of the [Nov. 6] sale, and she’d have 60 days to pay the balance.

That partial payment was supposed to be made by Sept. 28, Barnard said.

“I never received anything, and then last week, I received a check for $5,000 and someone from her organization called and wanted to know if we got the check,” Barnard said. “I said, well, we got a check for $5,000 that was supposed to have been $25,000, and they wanted to know if that would take it out of the sale and I told them, no.”