Home Uncategorized Massachusetts Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Will Sue Party Over Exclusion from Primary Ballot

Massachusetts Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Will Sue Party Over Exclusion from Primary Ballot

On March 22, the Massachusetts Republican Party held its statewide endorsements convention. According to party rules, no one may run for statewide office in the Republican primary unless the candidate got 15% or more support at the meeting. Charlie Baker got 2,095 votes at the meeting; Mark Fisher got 374; and 64 ballots were blank for Governor. See this story Fisher got 15.14% of the vote if the blanks are excluded, but 14.765% if they are included.

According to this later story, Fisher may bring a lawsuit, arguing that he met the 15% threshold and should be allowed to petition his way onto the Republican primary ballot. The law requires 10,000 signatures. The primary is September 9 and the primary petition is due May 6. UPDATE: this March 31 story says he will sue on April 1.

In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously in Gutierrez v Ada, 528 U.S. 250, that blank votes don’t count when a determination is made as to whether a candidate received a majority. That case concerned an election for Governor of Guam, in which there were only two candidates on the ballot, but neither one of them received a majority if blank votes were included. The outcome of that case depended on statutory construction.

One Response

  1. Mark Seidenberg

    The case of Guitierrez v, Ada, 528 U. S. 250, seems very interesting. If used within the California Election Code
    for the 1% rule of electors attempting to affiliate with a
    qualified political party for access to the primary election,
    The numbers to get based on the total vote in 2010 would fall
    below the current 103,004 level.

    Please post link to Guitierrez v. Ada.

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