Darrell Galloway of Hiram, a Republican, and Richard Segal of Douglasville, a Libertarian, are among their parties’ 16 Georgia electors who will comprise the Electoral College in this year’s presidential race.
“It’s kind of cool to be part of the process,” Galloway said.
The Georgia Republican Party executive committee earlier this year chose Galloway as its elector from the 14th Congressional District.
Though the names of the presidential and vice presidential candidates appear on the ballot, voters in each state are actually voting for electors who have been chosen to vote for a candidate should he win the state’s popular vote.
If Republican Mitt Romney wins the majority of the popular vote in Georgia, Galloway will be among a group which travels to Atlanta Dec. 17 and cast the state’s 16 electoral votes for Romney.
However, if Democrat Barack Obama wins in Georgia, Galloway will not make the trip.
Galloway moved to Paulding in 1992 and recalled he decided to take an active role in Republican politics after the 1996 re-election of Bill Clinton as president.
“I said I had to do something,” he said.
He went on to chair the Paulding County Republican Party and serve as the 11th and 14th District GOP chairman.
Segal was chosen as one of 16 presidential electors for the Georgia Libertarian Party.
The local activist attended the state party convention at The Georgia Center in Athens in February where he was chosen as a state elector.
“I have always been fascinated in the election process,” said Segal, who moved to Douglasville in 2000 and ran unsuccessfully for a seat on Douglasville City Council in 2009.
He said an individual can have a greater impact on the local level than on the state and federal level.
“I want to be able to have an impact,” he said.
As a Libertarian elector, Segal’s further duties depend upon the election outcome in Georgia Nov. 6.
If the party’s presidential candidate, former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson, carries the state, then Segal and the other 15 electors will meet Dec. 17 to cast their votes for Johnson, which will be certified by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office.
“It is a bookkeeping thing where the state certifies the results,” he explained.
Historically speaking, third party candidates have not fared well in Georgia, nor in the Electoral College system, according to the U.S. Electoral College website.
In the 2008 Georgia presidential race, Libertarian candidate Bob Barr was a decided third place, taking 0.7 percent of the votes.
He fared slightly better than 2004 presidential candidate Michael Badnarik who received only 0.6 percent of votes in Georgia.