Virginia Delegate Robert Brink (D-Arlington) has introduced HB 1898, which repeals the ban on out-of-state petition circulators. That law has already been held unconstitutional by a U.S. District Court, but the state is appealing.
Virginia Delegate Joseph Morrissey (D-Henrico) has introduced HB 2213, which lowers the number of signatures for all presidential candidates (both presidential primary candidates, and candidates petitioning for the general election) from 10,000 signatures to 5,000 signatures. The bill also lowers the number of signatures for candidates running for a statewide office in a party primary from 10,000 to 5,000. Unfortunately, the bill does not alter the law that requires non-presidential statewide independent and minor party candidates to obtain 10,000 signatures.
HB 2213 also sets forth procedures for a candidate to challenge a determination by a Board of Elections that the petition lacks enough valid signatures. Currently, when a Board of Elections says a petition doesn’t have enough valid signature, there is no administrative review process, and the candidate’s only recourse is to file a lawsuit. Last year a federal court in Virginia put an independent candidate on the ballot after finding that she did have enough valid signatures. The court also rebuked the state for not having any administrative review process.