April 5, 2005 Ė Volume 20, Number 12

This issue was originally printed on gray paper.

Table of Contents

  1. BALLOT ACCESS BILLS MAKE HEADWAY IN 10 STATES
  2. OKLAHOMA BALLOT ACCESS BILL FAILS
  3. MORE BALLOT ACCESS BILLS INTRODUCED
  4. WASHINGTON BILL TO HELP "TOP TWO" SYSTEM FAILS TO PASS
  5. PUERTO RICO PRESIDENTIAL VOTING CASE GETS REPRIEVE
  6. NEBRASKA LETS EX-FELONS VOTE
  7. IRV BILLS MOVE AHEAD
  8. LAWSUIT NEWS
  9. PRIMARY DATE BILLS
  10. PUBLICATIONS OF INTEREST
  11. NEW HAMPSHIRE GOP HIDES ITS TRUE DESIRES
  12. U.S. HOUSE PASSES ONE NEW ELECTION LAW
  13. HOW MANY QUALIFIED MINOR PARTIES?
  14. 2006 PETITIONING FOR STATEWIDE OFFICE
  15. CONGRESSIONAL ELECTION RESULTS
  16. INDEPENDENT GUBERNATORIAL BIDS
  17. LOS ANGELES MAYORALTY ELECTION
  18. VERMONT PERMITS 3rd PARTY CAUCUS
  19. TWO MINOR PARTY MAYORALTY WINS
  20. ARKANSAS GREENS TO RUN FORMER LEGISLATOR FOR GOVERNOR
  21. NEW JERSEY LIBERTARIANS
  22. PROHIBITION PARTY ON IN FLORIDA
  23. SUBSCRIBING TO BAN WITH PAYPAL


BALLOT ACCESS BILLS MAKE HEADWAY IN 10 STATES

Since the March 1 B.A.N., bills to improve ballot access have advanced in state legislatures in ten states.

Alaska: HB94 passed the House State Affairs Committee on March 15. It makes it easier for a party to remain on the ballot in gubernatorial years. Currently, it can only remain on the ballot in such years if it polls 3% for Governor, or if it has enough registered members. The bill would also let a party remain on if it polled 3% for either branch of Congress.

The bill also sets up procedures for independent presidential candidates.

Unfortunately, the bill makes it slightly more difficult for a party to remain on via registrations. Current law requires registrations equal to 3% of the last vote cast. The bill changes this to 2% of the number of registered voters in the state, which would raise it from 9,258 to (as of now) 9,500.

Arizona: SB 1205 passed the State Senate on March 8. Among other things, it lowers the number of signatures for a new party from 1.33% of the last vote cast, to 1.33% of the last gubernatorial vote cast. This change makes no difference in presidential years, but in mid-term years it substantially reduces the number of signatures, from 26,835 to 16,348.

California: AB 43 passed the Assembly Elections Committee on March 15. It legalizes write-ins if the voter wrote in the name of a candidate on the write-in space for that office, but forgot to "x" the box next to that line. The vote was 4-1.

Colorado: HR1147 passed the House February 11. It removes restrictions on who can circulate a petition. Under the bill, circulators no longer need to be registered voters, but they still need to be state residents. Also, for a petition to place a candidate on a primary ballot, the circulator need not be a member of that party.

Hawaii: HB119, which eases the law that petition signers put their Social Security numbers on petitions, passed the House on March 3. The bill doesnít entirely eliminate the requirement, but says only the last four digits of the S.S. number are needed.

Kentucky: HB141 was signed into law on March 16. It eliminates the requirement that minor party and independent candidates for federal office file a declaration of candidacy in April of an election year.

The last B.A.N. said that HB141 also removes the restriction on how early a petition to qualify a presidential candidate may begin to circulate. This was an error on the part of B.A.N. This part of the bill only relates to candidates running in a presidential primary.

Maine: on March 14, the Legal & Veterans Affairs Committee passed LD329 unanimously. It makes it easier for a party to remain on the ballot. Currently it must poll 5% for the office at the top of the ticket (President or Governor) at least once every four years. The bill would set up an alternate method for a party to remain on the ballot, that it keep its registration at one-half of 1%.

LD254, the bill to set up procedures for ballot status for smaller parties (parties that would nominate by convention, instead of primary) is also gaining support, and it is possible that both bills will pass. LD329 mostly helps the Green Party, but LD254 would be helpful to other minor parties.

North Dakota: HB1433 passed the State Senate on March 23. Among other things, it provides that if a new party polls 5% for Secretary of State or Attorney General in a mid-term year, then it can remain on the ballot. Under current law, no matter how well a new party does in a mid-term election, it cannot retain its qualified status.

Missouri: SB84 passed the Senate Elections Committee on March 14. Currently, if a new party circulates a petition to qualify itself, it must list its candidates for presidential elector on the petition (although it need not list candidates for any other office; those are chosen later at a state convention after the petition is done). The bill would delete the requirement that the candidates for presidential elector be listed. This would increase the flexibility of a new party to decide, after it gets on the ballot, whether it wants to put a presidential candidate on the ballot or not.

North Carolina: on March 23, H88 passed the House Election Law Committee, with only one dissenting vote. It reduces the number of signatures needed for a minor party from 2% of the last gubernatorial vote, to one-half of 1%. This would result in a decrease from 69,734 signatures to 17,434 signatures.

The bill sets the same requirement for statewide independent candidates. Unfortunately it requires nominees of a new party to pay filing fees (currently, new parties nominate by convention, and do not pay filing fees).


OKLAHOMA BALLOT ACCESS BILL FAILS

The Oklahoma ballot access reform bill, HB1429, was never given a hearing in the House Rules Committee, so it died. However, the lawsuit against the law is moving ahead. The case, Libertarian Political Organization v Clingman, cj2004-2949, Oklahoma County, has a pre-trial conference set for September 7. The lawsuit charges that the State Constitutionís mandate that elections be "free and equal" is violated by the stateís ballot access law. Oklahoma is the only state, which did not permit voters to vote for anyone for president last year except President Bush and Senator Kerry.


MORE BALLOT ACCESS BILLS INTRODUCED

Connecticut: SB1233 would create a procedure by which a group could transform itself into a qualified party, in advance of any particular election. Connecticut is currently one of only twelve states that lacks such a procedure (see the chart on page five for a list of these states). The bill requires a petition signed by 1% of the last vote cast for governor. The bill had a favorable hearing in the Joint Government Administration and Elections Committee on March 7. The Working Families Party has done most of the work for this bill so far.

Florida: HB1567, an omnibus election law bill proposed by the Secretary of State, retains current lenient procedures for minor party presidential ballot access, but makes them more specific. Under existing law, any qualified party can place its presidential nominee on the ballot with no petition, if it is a "national political party" and if it holds a "national convention". The bill defines these terms more specifically. "National political party" is a party on the ballot in at least one other state besides Florida. "National convention" is any meeting held to nominate a presidential candidate, whether in person or a teleconference meeting.

Massachusetts: H119 makes it easier for a party to remain qualified, by imposing the vote test every four years instead of every two years. H77 lowers the minor party and independent presidential petition from 10,000 to 5,000 signatures. H90 completely legalizes fusion (the ability of two parties to jointly nominate the same candidate).

Michigan: HB4328 permits initiative petitions to be circulated in 8.5 inch by eleven-inch paper. Current law requires that the sheets be 14 inches long. If the bill passes, it will be much easier to distribute blank petition forms on the Internet. Although the bill does not pertain to petitions to qualify a new party, chances are, if the bill passes, a future bill can expand the idea to new party and independent candidate petitions.

Texas: HB1721 would eliminate the "primary screenout", the law that makes it illegal for primary voters to sign a petition for a new party or an independent candidate. It has both Republican and Democratic sponsors. Texas is the only state in which primary voters cannot sign a petition for a new party.

West Virginia: HB3067 would bring the election code up-to-date, by repealing the obsolete language that tells petition circulators that they must tell potential signers that if they sign, they canít vote in the primary.

Another part of the bill deals with credentials for petitioners. West Virginia is the only state that requires circulators to obtain and carry credentials, entitling them to do this work. The bill would clarify that such credentials need not carry the name of the circulator.


WASHINGTON BILL TO HELP "TOP TWO" SYSTEM FAILS TO PASS

In a surprising development, SB 5745 failed to pass the Washington Senate by the deadline, so it is dead. The bill had passed the Senate State and Local Government Committee easily, despite testimony against it by Libertarians and Greens.

SB5745 was intended to help implement the "top-two" primary system passed by the voters last November. The initiative that created the "top-two" system was worded carelessly. On the one hand, it says that no can may appear on the November ballot (for congress, state office, and partisan county office) except the candidates who place first or second in the primary. Yet it failed to repeal another law that says the nominees of unqualified parties, and independent candidates, may get on the November ballot by petition.

Now the Secretary of State will draft some regulations to resolve the conflict. Unfortunately, the Washington Secretary of State, Sam Reed, supports the "top-two" system, so he will probably draft regulations that do not permit access to the November ballot by petition.


PUERTO RICO PRESIDENTIAL VOTING CASE GETS REPRIEVE

On March 14, the First Circuit granted a rehearing in Igartua v United States, no. 04-2186. The case had lost 2-1 back on October 14, 2004. This is not a re-hearing en banc. Instead, it is a re-hearing before the same three judges who already heard the case. This means that at least one of the judges who voted against the plaintiff last year is willing to reconsider. This type of rehearing is extremely rare.

The issue is whether it is unconstitutional to prevent U.S. citizens who live in Puerto Rico from voting for president. In the order granting the rehearing, attorneys on both sides were directed to address these issues: (1) the international legal obligations of the United States, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Inter-American Democratic Charter of the Organization of American States, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; (2) whether U.S. courts may issue declaratory judgments based on such treaties (note: the U.S. did sign all three of these treaties).

U.S. law already permits U.S. citizens who live permanently abroad to vote in federal elections. It is an irony that U.S. citizens can vote for president, no matter where in the world they live, unless they live in one of the U.S. possessions. The rehearing will be on May 4 in Boston.


NEBRASKA LETS EX-FELONS VOTE

On March 10, the Nebraska legislature overrode a gubernatorial veto and passed LB 53 into law. The vote was 36-11.

The old Nebraska law did not permit any ex-felon to register to vote unless he or she had received a pardon. Pardons are never granted until ten years have gone by since the ex-felon was released. Under the new law, restoration of voting rights is automatic, after two years have elapsed since the end of the sentence.


IRV BILLS MOVE AHEAD

Arkansas: on March 10, HB 1770 was signed into law. It requires that overseas military voters receive primary ballots that permit them to use Instant-Runoff voting. The rationale for the bill is that the state uses run-off primaries when no one gets a majority in the first primary. But, the mail is often too slow to permit both primary ballots to be sent to, and returned by, overseas military voters.

Utah: on March 2, the legislature passed HJR 20, the Master Study Resolution. It instructs the Legislative Management Committee to study IRV during the next nine months, so that the study will be ready for the 2006 session of the legislature.

Washington: on March 11, the State Senate passed SB5326, which lets Vancouver use IRV. On March 8, the House passed HB1447, which lets several home rule cities choose IRV for their city elections if they wish to.


LAWSUIT NEWS

Illinois: on March 21, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Griffin v Roupas, 04-988, a challenge to the stateís absentee voting laws.

Ohio: on January 25, the 6th circuit struck down another restriction on First Amendment activity in public places (see the January 1, 2005 B.A.N. for two earlier cases). This time, the court ruled that when a city grants a permit to a private organization to hold a large event in a public place, this does not mean that the public place becomes "private" for free speech purposes. The plaintiff had wanted to pass out leaflets in the public area where the Arts Festival was being held, but a security guard had expelled him. Parks v City of Columbus, 395 F.3d 643.

Texas: on March 21, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Ralph Naderís ballot access case against a state law that forces independent presidential candidates to get more signatures than are required for either a statewide independent candidate for other office, or a new party. Nader v Connor, 04-918.


PRIMARY DATE BILLS

Arkansas: HB1006, to move the presidential primary from May to the first Saturday in February, passed the House on February 14 and passed the Senate Government Affairs Committee on March 3. In 2008, the first Saturday in February is February 2. This would put Arkansas less than a week behind New Hampshire. Any qualified party (other than a new party) that didnít participate in this primary could not have its presidential nominee on the November ballot.

Montana: HB376, to move the presidential primary from June to any date in February or March that the Secretary of State chooses, passed the House on February 21.

New Jersey: AB30 and S2402 would move the primary from June to the last Tuesday in February.

North Carolina: SB18 would move the presidential primary to the first Tuesday in February.

Pennsylvania: SB40 would move the primary from April to the second Tuesday of March.


PUBLICATIONS OF INTEREST

B.A.N. readers would probably be interested in these publications:

1. Michael Richardson has a free monthly e-mail newsletter, Voter Voice. Richardson was Ralph Naderís ballot access coordinator last year. To be on the list, e-mail him at ballotaccessproject@hotmail.com.

2. The Neo-Independent is a glossy quarterly magazine published by the Committee for a United Independent Party. The upcoming issue, the third so far, has many articles, including one about how independent voters can become a pressure group for fairer election laws, one about the lawsuit by certain Nader supporters against the Democratic Party for using public resources to keep Nader off the ballot, and one about the Nader ballot access lawsuit last year in Florida. For a free sample of this issue, e-mail jopdycke@cuip.org and provide your postal address.


NEW HAMPSHIRE GOP HIDES ITS TRUE DESIRES

New Hampshire law currently lets independent voters vote in any party primary. Under a 1986 ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court, any party (in any state) may decide for itself whether it wants independents voting in its primary or not.

On February 9, the New Hampshire House passed HB154, which says that independents may no longer vote in party primaries unless the independent voter joins that party on primary election day. Then, these voters would be required to remain members of that party for three months following the primary. Most Democrats voted against HB154.

It seems that the Republican Party (the majority party in the legislature) no longer wishes to allow independents to vote in its primary, but is not willing to pass a rule change, setting forth this policy. Instead, the party is depending on the legislature to make this change for it. The bill has been attacked in newspaper editorials, and its chances in the State Senate are no better than 50-50.


U.S. HOUSE PASSES ONE NEW ELECTION LAW

On March 3, the U.S. House of Representatives passed HR841 by a vote of 329 to 68. It says that if as many as 100 members of the House are killed virtually simultaneously, the states must hold special elections to replace them within 49 days. Congress has the power to regulate congressional elections under Article One of the U.S. Constitution.

The billís chances in the U.S. Senate appear bleak. No Senator has introduced the same bill. However, U.S. Senator John Cornyn of Texas has introduced SJ6, a proposed Constitutional amendment, which seems to promote a different philosophy. It would give Congress the power to provide for replacement members by any means, if as many as one-fourth of the members were killed or incapacitated. However, Congress could only pass such procedures with a two-thirds vote.


HOW MANY QUALIFIED MINOR PARTIES?

The March 1 B.A.N. compared the states, relative to how easy it is for minor party and independent presidential candidates to get on the ballot. By contrast, the charts on this page compare the states on how easy it is for a minor party to gain and keep "qualified" status.

"Qualified" defined: If a party (other than the Democratic and Republican Parties) is "Qualified", this means that it enjoys the same ease of placing its nominees on the November ballot, that the Democratic and Republican Parties enjoy.

The chart in the middle column tells the average number of qualified parties in each state (other than the Democratic and Republican Parties), for the period 1981-2004. The states are ordered with the most lenient at the top, and the most restrictive at the bottom. The elections (in the period 1981-2004) include all years in which president, congress or governors were elected.

Connecticut, Georgia and Illinois have hybrid systems, in which a party may be "qualified" for some partisan offices, but not others. The chart excludes parties unless they were qualified for all office.

Some states have changed their laws since 1981, so the chart should not be taken as a rating of the states as they are today. States that have eased rules for a party to be "qualified" since 1981 are Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming. States that have made it harder since 1981 are Alabama, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Washington.

The chart in the right column shows the percentage of votes (or, in a few states, the number of registrants) needed for a party to remain on the ballot for all office. Connecticut and Georgia have 1% vote tests that keep parties on the ballot for some offices.

QUALIFIED PARTIES ON

Florida

5.4

Michigan

4.3

South Carolina

4.3

California

4.2

New York

3.8

Delaware

3.8

Vermont

3.6

Utah

3.4

Nevada

3.0

Hawaii

2.6

Wisconsin

2.6

Oregon

2.5

Idaho

2.3

Mississippi

2.3

Montana

2.3

Alaska

2.1

Kansas

1.9

Colorado

1.5

Arizona

1.5

Missouri

1.5

Nebraska

1.4

Texas

1.4

Alabama

1.0

North Carolina

1.0

Wyoming

1.0

Indiana

.8

Massachusetts

.8

South Dakota

.8

Maine

.7

Minnesota

.7

Rhode Island

.7

North Dakota

.5

Ohio

.5

Oklahoma

.5

New Mexico

.4

Arkansas

.3

Kentucky

.3

Louisiana

.3

Maryland

.3

New Hampshire

.3

Washington

.3

West Virginia

.3

Connecticut

.2

Illinois

.2

Iowa

.2

Pennsylvania

.2

Virginia

.1

Georgia

0

New Jersey

0

Tennessee

0

 
VOTES NEEDED (%)

Mississippi

be organized

Florida

be organized

Vermont

be organized

South Carolina

run candidate

Idaho

run 3 candidates

Delaware

(regis.) .05%

Colorado

1,000 registrants

Louisiana

1,000 registrants

Michigan

.6%

Arizona

(regis.).67%

New York

50,000 votes

Oregon

1%

Kansas

1%

Nevada

1%

Wisconsin

1%

Maryland

1%

West Virginia

1%

California

2%

Hawaii

2%

Indiana

2%

Iowa

2%

Kentucky

2%

Missouri

2%

Texas

2%

Utah

2%

Wyoming

2%

South Dakota

2.5%

Montana

2.8%

Alaska

3%

Arkansas

3%

Massachusetts

3%

New Hampshire

4%

Illinois

5%

Maine

5%

Minnesota

5%

Nebraska

5%

New Mexico

5%

North Dakota

5%

Ohio

5%

Rhode Island

5%

Tennessee

5%

Washington

5%

New Jersey

10%

North Carolina

10%

Oklahoma

10%

Virginia

10%

Pennsylvania

(regis.) 15%

Alabama

20%

Connecticut

20%

Georgia

20%


2006 PETITIONING FOR STATEWIDE OFFICE

STATE
REQUIREMENTS
SIGNATURES COLLECTED
Deadline
-
FULL PARTY
CAND.
LIB'T
GREEN
CONSTI
NAT LAW
REFORM

Alabama

41,012

41,012

1,200

0

0

0

0

in court

Alaska

(reg) 9,258

#3,128

*8,800d

in court

0

0

0

Aug. 22

Ariz.

26,835

est. #20,000

already on

0

0

0

0

June 14

Arkansas

10,000

10,000

0

0

0

0

0

May 1

Calif.

(reg) 77,389

165,573

already on

already on

already on

already on

40,516

Aug. 11

Colorado

(reg) 1,000

#1,000

already on

already on

already on

534

337

July 10

Connecticut

no procedure

#7,500

already on

0

already on

0

0

Aug. 11

Delaware

est. (reg) 280

est. 5,600

already on

already on

already on

257

211

July 15

D.C.

no procedure

est. #3,800

can't start

already on

can't start

can't start

can't start

Aug. 30

Florida

be organized

pay fee

already on

already on

already on

already on

already on

July 18

Georgia

42,676

#42,676

already on

0

0

0

0

July 11

Hawaii

648

25

already on

already on

0

already on

0

July 25

Idaho

11,968

5,984

already on

0

already on

already on

0

Aug. 31

Illinois

no procedure

#25,000

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

June 26

Indiana

no procedure

#29,553

already on

*1,000

0

0

0

June 30

Iowa

no procedure

#1,500

0

0

0

0

0

Aug. 18

Kansas

16,477

5,000

already on

0

0

0

already on

July 31

Kentucky

no procedure

#2,800

0

0

0

0

0

Aug. 8

La.

(reg) 1,000

pay fee

already on

870

50

23

virtually on

Sep. 7

Maine

24,798

#4,000

0

already on

0

0

0

May 25

Maryland

10,000

est. 29,400

already on

already on

already on

0

0

Aug. 7

Mass.

est. (reg) 41,000

#10,000

23,900

9,509

56

44

1,168

Aug. 1

Michigan

31,731

31,731

already on

already on

already on

already on

0

July 20

Minnesota

141,420

#2,000

0

0

0

0

0

July 18

Mississippi

be organized

1,000

already on

already on

already on

already on

already on

April 7

Missouri

10,000

10,000

already on

0

0

0

0

July 31

Montana

5,000

#5,000

already on

0

0

0

0

May 30

Nebraska

4,735

2,500

*300

*2,000

0

0

0

Aug. 29

Nevada

7,915

7,915

already on

0

already on

0

0

July 7

New Hamp.

20,299

#3,000

0

0

0

0

0

Aug. 9

New Jersey

no procedure

#800

0

0

0

0

0

June 6

New Mex.

3,782

14,079

already on

already on

already on

0

0

July 11

New York

no procedure

#15,000

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

Aug. 22

No. Car.

69,734

law is void

*21,000

8,900

0

0

0

June 30

No. Dakota

7,000

1,000

0

0

0

0

0

Sep. 8

Ohio

56,280

5,000

in court

0

0

0

0

May 1

Oklahoma

73,188

pay fee

in court

0

0

0

0

June 21

Oregon

18,381

18,356

already on

already on

already on

0

0

Aug. 29

Penn.

no procedure

#66,827

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

Aug. 1

Rhode Isl.

21,815

#1,000

can't start

canít start

can't start

can't start

can't start

July 20

So. Caro.

10,000

10,000

already on

already on

already on

0

already on

July 15

So. Dakota

8,364

#3,346

already on

0

already on

0

0

June 20

Tennessee

41,314

25

0

0

0

0

0

April 6

Texas

45,253

45,253

already on

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

May 11

Utah

2,000

#1,000

already on

*200

*already on

0

0

Mar. 17

Vermont

be organized

#1,000

already on

already on

0

0

0

Sep. 21

Virginia

no procedure

#10,000

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

June 13

Washington

no procedure

law is unclear

canít start

can't start

can't start

can't start

can't start

July 7

West Va.

no procedure

#8,724

0

0

0

0

0

May 8

Wisconsin

10,000

#2,000

already on

already on

already on

0

0

July 11

Wyoming

4,774

4,774

already on

0

0

0

0

Aug. 28

TOTAL STATES ON
27
15
*16
6
4
-

Three states (Ky., La., N.C.) have no statewide partisan races up in 2006,
so the chart shows the requirements for a party to run a full slate for U.S. House.
*means a change since the Mar. 1, 2005 chart.
#means partisan label is permitted (other than "indp.").


CONGRESSIONAL ELECTION RESULTS

The first congressional election of 2005 was held in Sacramento, California on March 8. The special election was called to replace Congressman Robert Matsui, who had died unexpectedly earlier in the year.

For special elections, California holds a blanket primary, which is final if someone gets 50% or more of the vote. The March 8 ballot listed three Democrats, four Republicans, one Green, one Libertarian, one Peace & Freedom member, and one independent candidate. The results: Democrats polled 78.34%; Republicans 18.41%; Green 1.19%, Libertarian .57%, Peace & Freedom .35%, independent 1.14%. Since the congressmanís widow, Doris Matsui, polled over 50% of the vote, there is no run-off.

Last year in this same district, the vote was Democratic 71.36%; Republican 23.33%; Green 3.41%; Peace & Freedom 1.90%.


INDEPENDENT GUBERNATORIAL BIDS

Virginia: elects its governor this year. A Republican State Senator, H. Russell Potts, will run as an independent candidate. He needs 10,000 signatures by June 14. He believes that the Republican Party has become too conservative, and he promises a populist appeal. He has hired Tom DíAmore to help run his campaign. DíAmore was also an active supporter of Lowell Weicker when Weicker was elected Governor of Connecticut in 1990 as the nominee of "A Connecticut Party".

Texas: like most states, elects its governor in 2006. Kinky Friedman of Kerrville, a humorist, country singer and mystery writer, will run as an independent candidate. See www.kinkyfriedman.com. Texas has never had an independent candidate for Governor on a government-printed ballot. Such ballots have existed since 1903. The original 1903 law made no provision for independent candidates. In 1905, a petition procedure was created, requiring signatures of 1% of the last gubernatorial vote. This procedure has never been used by a gubernatorial candidate.


LOS ANGELES MAYORALTY ELECTION

On March 8, Los Angeles held a non-partisan election for Mayor. Twelve candidates were on the ballot. The only minor party member in the race, Wendy Lyons of the Socialist Workers Party, received .47%.


VERMONT PERMITS 3rd PARTY CAUCUS

On February 18, the Vermont State House Rules Committee amended its rules, to permit more than two party caucuses. The old rule #24 only permitted the two largest parties in that body to form caucuses. Since there are six Progressive Party members of the Vermont House, the rule change seemed sensible, and was adopted unanimously.


TWO MINOR PARTY MAYORALTY WINS

Last month, two minor parties won a mayoralty election in New York state. The Working Families Party elected the mayor of Hempstead, and the Independence Party elected the Mayor of Baxter Estates. Both elections are partisan.


ARKANSAS GREENS TO RUN FORMER LEGISLATOR FOR GOVERNOR

Jim Lendall, who was elected to the Arkansas state House in 1988 as an independent candidate, and who later was elected to that body as a Democrat, has agreed to be the Green Partyís candidate for Governor next year.


NEW JERSEY LIBERTARIANS

The New Jersey Libertarian Party plans to field as many as 60 candidates for the lower house of the legislature in this yearís election, out of a total of 80 seats.


PROHIBITION PARTY ON IN FLORIDA

The Prohibition Party is now on the ballot in Florida. Parties become ballot-qualified in Florida by holding a state convention, choosing officers, and certifying their names to the state. This is the first time the Prohibition Party has been a ballot-qualified in any state since 1992.


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