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West Virginia Law Professor, Champion of Ballot Access, Seeks State Supreme Court Seat

Published on April 30, 2008, by in General.

University of West Virginia Law Professor Bob Bastress is seeking one of the two Democratic Party nominations for State Supreme Court Justice, in the May 6 primary. Bastress has been a professor there for 30 years and has done many pro bono constitutional lawsuits during those years. On April 9, he was endorsed by the Charleston Gazette, the state’s largest newspaper. The members of the State Bar have ranked him as tied for the top, in a survey of all 4,600 members that evaluated all the candidates on legal ability, reasoning ability, impartiality, diligence, courtesy, and integrity.

Bastress has filed 6 lawsuits against various election laws that make ballot access difficult for minor parties and independent candidates, during the last 28 years, and he has won 4 of them. He represented John Anderson, the Libertarian Party, and the Citizens Party, in 1980, when his lawsuit struck down the law that circulators could not work outside their home magisterial district. In 2003, he won a case for the Libertarian Party against a state law that said circulators must tell signers that if the signer signs the petition, they cannot vote in the primary. In 2000, he won a case for the Constitution Party that struck down the filing fee for declared write-in candidates. He has tried twice to overturn the May petition deadline for minor party and independent candidates (for office other than president), but those lawsuits did not win. See his campaign webpage at www.bastressforjustice.com. The race has four candidates, with two to be nominated.

Any voter who is registered “Independent”, or as a member of a party that is not ballot-qualified, is free to choose a Democratic primary ballot this year in West Virginia.

8 Responses

  1. Demo Rep

    How many times has Mr. B. noted in his ballot access cases that —

    SEPARATE IS NOT EQUAL. Brown v. Bd of Ed 1954. ???

  2. bob wayne

    i hope he wins

  3. Obama Chris

    I wish him luck.

  4. Jeff Becker

    “Any voter who is registered “Independent”, or as a member of a party that is not ballot-qualified, is free to choose a Democratic primary ballot this year in West Virginia.”
    … or a Republican ballot (to vote for Ron Paul). Hmmm, choices, choices, we’re finally getting some choices!

    NOTE: “Independent” means anyone who is registered “NP” (= Non-Partisan / No Party), and a member of a party that is not ballot-qualified means registered “O” (= Other with ANYTHING written on the blank after it. This covers Constitution, Libertatian, and Reform parties among others).

  5. Jeff Becker

    PS: Interesting that the WV Democrat Party has just switched to the Republican style open primary and the Mountain Party is participating in the primary, but in closed old Democrat style. So now, voters registered Republican, Democrat, and Mountain are limited to the candidates of their chosen party, but voters registered NP or Other have an opportunity to meddle in the affairs of either Republicrat party. Hmmmm….

  6. The New American Independent Party has endorsed Bob Bastress for WV Supreme Court. I urge other third parties to also endorse Bob Bastress. He stood with you, now it’s time to stand with him.

  7. Michael Seebeck

    Michael Thompson is right, the LP should wholeheartedly endorse this guy.

    Are you listening, Shane Cory? This is the type of stuff that you *should* be press-releasing, not calling to expand the FBI or the other tripe you’ve put out of late.

  8. NE

    I also hope that he wins, good luck!

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