Massachusetts Lawsuit Against Listing Incumbents First on the Ballot

Massachusetts is the only state that automatically prints incumbents first on the ballot. A lawsuit challenging that law, filed in 2004, but dormant since then, is finally coming to life. The case is White v Galvin, Plymouth Co., ca04-427, and it has a status conference in a few weeks.

Also pending is a federal case in Maryland against the Maryland law, putting candidates on the ballot in alphabetical order. It is Schaefer v Lamone, L-06-896.

Both sets of plaintiffs argue that states should use some random procedure to decide order of candidates on the ballot.