Home Uncategorized U.S. District Court Rules that a County Party Organization Lacks Standing to Challenge Open Primary
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U.S. District Court Rules that a County Party Organization Lacks Standing to Challenge Open Primary

On August 21, U.S. District Court Judge Mary Lewis, an Obama appointee, ruled that the Greenville County Republican Party does not have standing to challenge South Carolina’s open primary. The case is Greenville County Republican Party v State of South Carolina, 6:10cv-1407. It had been filed in 2010 and was about to have its first trial, but now the case is dismissed. The state Republican Party dropped out of the case several months ago. If it had remained in the case, standing would not have been an issue.

The lawsuit had been filed to enable the Republican Party to exclude non-Republicans from voting in its primaries. Another issue in the case was the state law that tells parties they may only nominate by convention if three-fourths of the delegates to the state convention vote to use conventions.

In 1989, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in San Francisco County Democratic Central Committee v Eu that a county political party does have standing to challenge state election laws that restrict political parties. The Greenville County Republican Party will appeal the ruling on standing to the Fourth Circuit.

2 Responses

  1. Jim Riley

    Surely, the decision on standing was specific to the facts in the California case. In the SCOTUS decision in the underlying case, they said that Storer did not apply because, the county party was wanting to make endorsements in the primary, and the laws upheld under Storer were to prevent post-primary factionalism.

    It would be chaotic if the Greenville County party nominated by convention and the rest of the party nominated by primary, or there were different “Republican” nominees in different parts of the State.

    The Greenville County party doesn’t even have a chairman at this point. Since the law was changed in this past session, it would make more sense to step back and try to convince the state party to nominate by convention, or challenge the law requiring a 3/4 vote.

  2. :-)

    “U.S. District Court Judge Mary Lewis, an OBAMA appointee, ruled that the Greenville County REPUBLICAN Party does not have standing to challenge South Carolina‚Äôs open primary.”

    [heavysarcasm]SHOCKER!!![/heavysarcasm]

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