The Sixth Circuit will hear Libertarian Party of Ohio v Husted at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 22. The Sixth Circuit isn’t sitting this week, so the hearing will be on the telephone, with all participants being included in a conference call. On April 18, the Libertarian Party filed a supplemental letter with the court, identifying a Sixth Circuit decision from 1998 that is relevant to the case.
The issue in the case is whether the party’s statewide candidates should be kept off the party’s primary ballot, on the grounds that the circulators didn’t fill out a blank on each petition form that asks who is paying the circulator. The supplemental authority mentioned in the party’s April 18 letter refers to National Labor Relations Board v Midland Daily News, 151 F.3d 472, which found that forcing a newspaper to disclose the identity of an anonymous advertiser, even though it only involved commercial and not political speech, would significantly chill the First Amendment rights of newspapers.
The three judges are Richard Suhrheinrich, Julia Smith Gibbons, and Deborah L. Cook. Suhrheinrich is an appointee of President George H. W. Bush; the other two judges were appointed by President George W. Bush.