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Democrats’ gala Friday features Johnson, Barrow, Laws
Event set for 7 p.m. at Georgia Southern
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Candidates John Barrow, left, and Francys Johnson will join Janice Laws as keynote speakers at the Democratic gala at Georgia Southern Friday night.

Dinner and the speaking program of the Democratic Party of Bulloch County’s eighth annual Independence Gala will begin at 7 p.m. Friday in the Russell Union Ballroom on the Georgia Southern University campus.

The ticketed event serves as a fundraiser for the local party. Before the banquet a meet-and-greet opportunity with the three keynote speakers will open at 6 p.m. This being election season, featured speakers Francys Johnson, John Barrow and Janice Laws  are all Democratic candidates in the Nov. 6 election.

Johnson, a Statesboro-based attorney and minister, is challenging incumbent Rep. Rick Allen, the Republican from Augusta, for Georgia’s 12th District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Barrow, who held that congressional seat 2005-2015, is now the Democratic Party’s nominee for Georgia secretary of state. Laws is the nominee for state insurance commissioner.

Johnson, Barrow and Laws all won contested Democratic primaries in May. Barrow now faces Republican secretary of state nominee Brad Raffensperger and Libertarian candidate Smythe Duval. Laws is vying with GOP insurance commissioner nominee Jim Beck and Libertarian candidate Donnie Foster.

The Democratic Party’s nominee for governor, Stacey Abrams, is not attending the gala, but her campaign is sending a video message Abrams recorded personally for  Bulloch Democrats, said county party chair Jessica Orvis.

“The Blue Wave” is the gala’s theme, with this being one instance locally where blue is the Democratic color and not that of a sports team. Tickets are $50 per person or$360 for an eight-seat table, available on Eventbrite through

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