The Libertarian Party of Georgia has a lawsuit pending in U.S. District Court against the petition requirement for minor party and independent candidates for U.S. House. On April 20, the party was required to notify the state of the substance of the testimony that will be submitted. One of the party’s witnesses, Darcy Richardson, submitted this 7-page summary of evidence that shows the 5% petition was passed in 1943 in order to block the Communist Party from ever again getting on the Georgia ballot.
Although the North Carolina legislature in 2017 made some huge improvements to ballot access for newly-qualifying parties, the ballot access laws relating to independent candidate are still faulty. Last year, a lawsuit was filed in federal court against some of those laws. Leifert v Strach, m.d., 1:17cv-147.
On April 20, a status conference was held. By April 27, both sides must jointly file a report setting out which issues in the case still need to be adjudicated.
The most glaring faults in the North Carolina law for independent candidates are: (1) the petition deadline for independent candidates, including presidential independent candidates, was moved from June to April early in 2017; (2) the number of signatures for a statewide independent is far in excess of the number needed for a new party.
Precedents from North Carolina federal court decisions already make it clear that both characteristics are unconstitutional. In DeLaney v Bartlett, in 2004, a U.S. District Court said that North Carolina could not require more signatures for a statewide independent than for an entire new party. And in Greaves v North Carolina State Board of Elections, in 1980, a U.S. District Court said that April is too early for independent candidate petition deadlines.
Michael Reagan has this commentary about California’s top-two system in the Daily Freeman.
Ever since 1980, the Federal Election Commission has published a book of election returns for federal office. The book is the most accurate reference available. It is even more accurate than America Votes, which is published by a for-profit publisher and which charged $250 for the 2016 volume.
The Federal Election Commission finished the 2016 book many months ago, and it it on-line. The title is “Federal Elections 2016.” It is 197 pages. Unfortunately, even though the FEC would like the book to be printed as a book, instead of just on-line, the U.S. Government Publishing Office seems to be considering never producing the book at all, on the theory that it isn’t needed because it is on-line.
The 2016 presidential election results are the most complicated election returns for any U.S. presidential election in history. There were more candidates on the ballot than at any presidential election in history, and there were more write-ins cast, as a percentage, since any presidential election in history. People who work with election returns appreciate having the complete record in book form.
If you care about this, please contact your member of the U.S. House and ask them to ask the Government Publishing Office to print the book. All members of Congress have large staffs to handle constituent requests like this.
On April 20, 2018, the Democratic National Committee sued the Russian government, the Donald Trump 2016 presidential campaign, Julian Assange, Roger Stone, and others over actions taken in the 2016 presidential election campaign. Here is the 66-page complaint, which cites many news sources. The case is filed in Manhattan and is Democratic National Committee v The Russian Federation, s.d., 1:18cv-3501.
The law firm that filed the complaint is Cohen, Milstein, Sellers & Toll. The complaint asks for a jury. Thanks to Political Wire for this news.
On April 18, the Oklahoma legislature passed HB 3053. It makes it legal for a voter to photograph that voter’s completed ballot. The vote in the House was 83-5, and in the State Senate, 36-6. It now goes to Governor Mary Fallin.