On August 19, the Virginia State Board of Elections asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear Judd v Libertarian Party of Virginia. This is the case won by the Libertarian Party in both U.S. District Court and in the 4th Circuit, over whether states may ban out-of-state petitioners. Many states have lost similar lawsuits, but Virginia is only the second one, after Arizona, to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal.
In 2009 the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Arizona’s appeal of the same issue. Arizona had arranged for approximately twelve states to file an amicus curiae supporting the state, but the Court still refused to hear the case.
Page seven of Virginia’s petition says that the Libertarian Party has never polled more than .6% of the presidential vote in Virginia, but actually in 2012, the party polled .81% of the total presidential vote in Virginia. Also in 1980, it polled .69% for president in Virginia.
The state’s petition says that the party has never shown enough support in Virginia to enjoy “party” status, but does not say that Virginia requires a vote of 10% for a group to become a political party, far in above of the national median vote requirement of 2%. No state requires a higher percentage of the vote for party status than Virginia, except Alabama, which requires 20%.
The state’s petition does not mention all the presidential candidates with substantial support who tried and failed to get on the Virginia presidential primary ballot, or the general election ballot. They include, in 2012, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman; in 2008, Chris Dodd; in 2004, Ralph Nader; in 2000, John Hagelin; in 1996, Ralph Nader.