Labor Party Begins First Petition to Qualify

The Labor Party was formed in 1990 by Tony Mazzocchi, but until this year, it never attempted to qualify as a political party in any state. However, a few weeks ago, the Labor Party launched a petition drive to qualify itself for the South Carolina ballot. The election law says these signatures are due six months before the November 2006, which works out to May 7, 2006. However, the South Carolina Election Commission has told the Labor Party that it really ought to submit its petitions by January 31, 2006, so the party is attempting t0 meet that deadline. The party says it chose South Carolina because the vast majority of the state’s adult population are workers, and that neither major party in that state serves their interests.


Labor Party Begins First Petition to Qualify — 9 Comments

  1. Why does the South Carolina Election Commission say that the Labor Party should submit its petitions so early?

  2. I think the election commission assumes that the Labor Party wants to run candidates in the November 2006 election. Those candidates, according to state law, would have to submit statements of intention of candidacy to the certified Labor Party between March 16 and March 30, and in order to certify the party by then, the election commission would have to check the petitions to see if at least 10,000 of the signatures are valid. My understanding is that the commission figures it may take that long to check so many petition signatures.

  3. Anna above is right, but the Election Commission has not ruled this way. The staff indicates that this is what they are thinking, but the actual commission itself has made no such decision.

    I am not a lawyer, but to me I see no reason the Labor Party couldn’t comply with all the law’s requirements, for ads in the legal notices for example, before filing and meeting the 10,000 signature requirement. Everything can be done to meet state law since state law is silent on the issue of whether a non-ballot qualified political party can move forward with all the non-petition requirements absent the final signature count.

    In other words, just because the Labor Party is not currently on the ballot does not mean they can’t buy the required ads, hold the required precinct meetings, establish a specific set of times and places to file to run for office etc before securing final confirmation that the party has meet the state’s burden of 10,000 signatures.

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