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Constitution Party and Socialist Party Legislative Nominees in Indiana did Surprisingly Well

Published on January 12, 2013, by in General.

Indiana ballot access laws, since 1983, have been so restrictive, the Libertarian Party is generally the only party that appears on the ballot for statewide office and Congress. No other party, other than the two major parties, has appeared on the Indiana ballot for a statewide office since 2000, when Pat Buchanan petitioned as the Reform Party nominee.

But the petition requirements for legislature aren’t too restrictive, so in 2012 both the Constitution Party and the Socialist Party placed one or two legislative candidates on the November ballot. The Constitution Party’s nominee, Audrey Queckboerner, polled 8.06% in a race in the 85th district in northeast Indiana. The race also included a Republican and a Democrat.

The Socialist Party ran two legislative nominees, both in the Indianapolis area. In the 39th House district, the state chair of the Socialist Party, John Strinka, polled 9.77% in a two-person race. The Socialist Party, before 2012, had last had legislative candidates on the ballot in Indiana in 1946, and none of the 1946 candidates polled more than .4%. Also in 2012, Socialist Party nominee Ronald Haldeman polled 3.35% in a two-person race against a Democrat. He probably would have done better, but he was running in a black majority district with a black incumbent, and Haldeman is white.

7 Responses

  1. Jed Siple

    Great news for both parties. Shows that grassroots campaigning produces results.

  2. David

    Those were low numbers for a legislative race. In a two person race there’s no reason why they didn’t get 18% or above. The LP had several candidates in two person races that were in the 20’s percentage wise. It would be nice to see a few wins though.

  3. :-)

    @2 I agree, those numbers were actually relatively abysmal results for a two-person legislative race…

  4. Richard Winger

    #2 and #3, you should take into consideration the Indiana straight-ticket device. Chances are half the voters never even noticed those Constitution and Socialist Party candidates on their ballot, and just pulled a straight-ticket lever for one of the 3 parties that had one.

  5. Michael

    2 & 3) Disagree. If you are the major party incumbent, getting less than 95 percent is an insult.

  6. Craig M.

    Audrey Queckboerner did run in a 3-person race, against an incumbent entrenched in the State Legislature since 1978. It was the first time in memory that the D’s ran in this race. It was looking good for Audrey until the D candidate decided to run. In other news, we hope to get rid of the straight-ticket device soon….in this state….It is Senate Bill 0051 and is the first one my State Senator has listed under his name…..

  7. Richard Winger

    #6, you’re right. Thank you; I fixed the error.

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