MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) -- The state house passed a series of bills today that would abolish partisan elections for most local races for Macon and Bibb County.
The bills targeted partisan races for Mayor, County Commission, Coroner, Bibb County Board of Education, Macon Water Authority, and the Magistrate, Civil, and Probate Court Judges. It means you won't see party affiliations for the candidates who are running for these offices.
The four bills, didn't pass without a few fireworks though. State Representative Allen Peake introduced the legislation by honing in on a fact.
"Not a single other city in the city in the state has non-partisan elections," said Peake.
State Representative Nikki Randall spoke in opposition of the bill. She recited a biblical verse in which one person pulls a bait and switch. She claimed that's what her Republican colleagues on the Bibb County Legislative Delegation did.
"Laban baited him with something he knew Jacob would want," said Randall.
State Representative James Beverly carried on the opposing conversation after Randall with an emotional plea.
"I hope you give the residents of Bibb County the right to choose their destiny," Beverly said.
Some of the most memorable words in the fight against senate bills 25, 26, 30, 31 came from a state representative who doesn't even represent the people of Bibb County.
"Thi bill got the wrong the wrong names on it. The names should be folk like Putin. This is a Russian bill. That's not what this house is about. This house is about the will of the people," said State Representative Al Williams, District 168 (D).
State Representative Allen Peake spoke on behalf of the bills saying the change makes sense for the famously divided community.
"This is a smart bill for our community. We need to stop the divisiveness and vote the most competent people to these offices," says Peake.
Beverly and Randall said that's not what the people voted on when the passed consolidation.
"When we started if partisan elections are off the table, we're not signing. Representative Randall said it, I said it, and Senator Paris," says Beverly.
"All of these bills change the will of the people without the people being able to have the ability to vote again," Randall said.
Peake supported his position on the floor by saying Bibb County residents want to get rid of party lines.
"We make changes to the charter every year. We are only responding to what the citizens requested of us," says Peake.
Before becoming law, these bills will have to be approved by Governor Nathan Deal and must be approved by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Peake says he wouldn't be surprised if some of his colleagues take their fight to the DOJ. Randall and Beverly expect the bills will not make be approved by the DOJ.
State Senator David Lucas told 41 NBC's Ashley Minelli, he plans to file a complaint with the DOJ regarding these bills.