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Perennial candidate David Cousino rode into the Macon-Bibb mayor's race Wednesday afternoon on a horse named "Joker."

Cousino dismounted in front of the Board of Elections, slung the saddlebags over his shoulder, and ambled into the board office.

After filling out his paperwork to become the sixth person to qualify for mayor of the new consolidated government,Cousino opened his saddlebags to pay his $3,000 qualifying fee.

First, he dropped $1,875 in gold coins on the table. Then, he added the other $1,175 in paper money.

Mayor Robert Reichert, former mayor C. Jack Ellis, Chairman Sam Hart, former chairman Charlie Bishop, and commissioner Joe Allen qualifiedearlier in the week.

Cousino says the horse symbolizes the need to rein-in government.

"If we do the same old things, we get the same old results," he says. "A horse, you ride a horse, you're not the horse. This community has been the horse too long of a time. We need somebody that can get a hold of the reins and start moving forward in this community."

After qualifying Cousino strolled out of the board office, mounted Joker, and headed west across the parking lot and into the sunset.

Board of Elections supervisor, Jeaneatta Watson, says this is the first time she knew of that a candidate rode on a horse to qualify.

Cousino is a frequent candidate for office. He won the Republican nomination for mayor in 2007 and got 4 percent of the vote to Robert Reichert's 96 percent.

He ran for mayor as a write-in candidate in 2011, because he didn't want to pay the fee to qualify as a Republican. He got 2 percent of the vote that year.

Earlier Wednesday, Macon council president James Timley qualified for the District9 commission seat, and U.S. Army Reserve Officer Paul Bronson officially entered the District 2 race.

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