Wisconsin Democratic Party Official Removes Green Party Legislative Candidate from November Ballot

Mike LaForest is a Green Party nominee for lower house of the Wisconsin legislature. On June 5, a Democratic Party official filed a challenge to his general election petition. LaForest needs 200 valid signatures and submitted 284. On June 10, the challenge was upheld, and LaForest was removed from the ballot. GreenPartyWatch has the details. There will be two candidates on the general election ballot, the Democratic incumbent and a Libertarian.

The Green Party is not a ballot-qualified party in Wisconsin, although it probably will regain its party status in the November 2014 election.


Wisconsin Democratic Party Official Removes Green Party Legislative Candidate from November Ballot — No Comments

  1. The complainant file complaints against 6 different candidates, Republicans, Democrats, and Green. They cover all kinds of alleged defects, which indicates that Joel Gratz is a senior party hack supervising a bunch of junior party hacks and party hack interns.

    One complaint is that names aren’t printed, but are in cursive. There would be a totally illegible signature, and then the voter would connect the letters when printing their name. I never use cursive, because I couldn’t read it, let alone any one else. But I connect letters when I print.

    If you were the instructor for Political Hackery 101, would you tell a student that this was a frivolous complaint?

    Another makes the complaint that a candidate gave an address at an inn, and since he is not the owner of the inn, he couldn’t possibly live there. The candidate in his response provided his lease, as well as the cancelled check for his rent.

    Others complaints may be more substantive. One petition had 203 signatures (200 are needed), and a dozen or so are challenged as not residing in the district. It appears that all signers were checked against the state’s online voter data base. The Green petition has several signatures challenged on that basis, but certainly not enough to disqualify the petition.

    The challenges to Republican candidates were formally responded to by a lawyer for the party. I wonder if there is some risk of the Green candidate losing on some sort of default decision?

    I came across a complaint against Joel Gratz from 2002. At that time he was employed by the legislature. He took vacation time to check candidate petitions. If you are going to take a vacation in Wisconsin, can’t you do something like go ice fishing, swat mosquitoes, or drive to Iowa to watch the corn grow? The GAB concluded it was OK to check petitions on your vacation, but that next time Gratz should tell his supervisor when he was going to take vacation time.

  2. The G.A.B. did in fact kick Mr. LaForest off the ballot, at the behest of the Democrats. There is no Republican running (it’s a fairly liberal Madison district), making the 47th District one of three head-to-head races with Libertarian candidates in Wisconsin this year. The others are Wendy Friedrich vs. an incumbent Republican Senator in the 5th District, and George Meyers vs. an incumbent Democratic Representative in the 66th District.

    Andy Craig
    Libertarian for WI Secretary of State

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