Ballot Access News is edited and published by Richard Winger, the nation's leading expert on ballot access legal issues.


North Carolina Governor Signs Bill for a March Primary for All Office

On September 30, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed HB 373, the bill that moves the non-presidential primary from May to March, and moves the presidential primary from February to March.

As a result, candidates for partisan office (other than President) in the Republican, Democratic, and Libertarian Parties have a December 1 deadline to pay their filing fees and file a declaration of candidacy for a party primary. Thanks to FrontloadingHQ for this news.


New York Times Calls on New York Legislature to Abolish Fusion

The October 1 New York Times has this editorial, suggesting that the New York legislature abolish fusion. The editorial does not mention that in 1912, the state’s highest court, the State Court of Appeals, ruled that the state constitution prevents the state from abolishing fusion. The State Constitution has been replaced since 1912 with a newer Constitution, and it is not known if the same provisions in the 1912 Constitution relevant to this are still in today’s Constitution.


Newspaper Describes Seven Active Canadian Minor Parties

The National Post, a leading daily newspaper published in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, has this article about seven minor parties active in the October 2015 election. They include the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, and the Pirate Party, organizations that also exist in the U.S. It is interesting to compare the platforms of those Canadian parties with the platforms of their counterparts in the U.S.


Next Republican Presidential Debate Main State Requires 3% in Polls

The third Republican presidential debate will be in Boulder, Colorado, on October 28, Wednesday. The sponsor, CNBC, requires candidates to be at 3% in polls in order to get on the main state. A debate will be held earlier for candidates who are at 1% but under 3%. See this story.


Filing Closes for South Carolina Republican Presidential Primary

Some weeks ago, the South Carolina Republican Party set a presidential primary filing deadline of September 30, 2015. That is easily the earliest such deadline in the nation for the 2016 presidential primaries. No other presidential primary has a deadline earlier than November 2015.

Here is the list of the 15 candidates who paid the $40,000 filing fee. Half the money goes to government election officials, and half goes to the state Republican Party. The party does not pay for any of the administration of the presidential primary.

The only candidate on the list who has not been allowed to participate in the debates so far is former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore.


North Carolina Legislature Passes Bill for Party Labels for Candidates for State Appeals Judicial Spots

On September 29, the North Carolina legislature passed HB 8, which says candidate for appeals court judge may have their party membership listed on the ballot if they wish. Under current law, the elections are completely non-partisan, with no party nominations and no party labels. The bill does not apply to elections for State Supreme Court Justice, nor to Superior Court judicial races.

The legislature has now adjourned, although it will come back in October in case it wishes to override any possible gubernatorial vetoes.