Failed Georgia Democratic Senate candidate settles ethics violations

A former Democratic state Senate candidate reached an agreement with the Georgia ethics commission to pay $6,000 for failing to file campaign contribution reports and other forms during her 2018 run for office.

Ethics commission staff on Thursday said a lawyer for Sabrina McKenzie, a Stone Mountain Democrat known as the Dancing Preacher, agreed to pay the fines. Neither McKenzie nor her attorney attended Thursday’s hearing before the commission.

The complaints stem from her 2018 campaign in the Senate District 41 Democratic primary, which she narrowly lost to then-Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson.

In December 2019, the ethics commission found probable cause that McKenzie violated campaign finance laws by not disclosing what she raised and spent in the 2018 race. McKenzie missed four deadlines for filing campaign finance disclosures and did not file a mandatory disclosure detailing her personal finances during her 2018 run. She filed those reports in May and June of 2020.

Ethics commission staffers said McKenzie initially appeared to be avoiding attempts to contact her, but the commission eventually reached her and her attorney to work out the agreement.

McKenzie made headlines last year when she appeared to be continuing to solicit campaign contributions and endorsements for a primary run for the same Senate seat after she had been disqualified from the race. The commission looked into those solicitations and decided against pursuing further complaints.