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May 2014 Ballot Access News Print Edition

Ballot Access News
May 1, 2014 – Volume 29, Number 12


This issue was printed on gray paper.



Table of Contents

  1. OKLAHOMA BALLOT ACCESS BILL PASSES SENATE
  2. U.S. SUPREME COURT OPINION INCLUDES GOOD LANGUAGE FOR BALLOT ACCESS
  3. NEW HAMPSHIRE LEGISLATURE MAKES BALLOT ACCESS WORSE
  4. LEGISLATIVE NEWS
  5. NATIONAL CONVENTION PUBLIC FUNDING REPEALED
  6. MONTANA TOP-TWO MEASURE REMOVED FROM BALLOT
  7. LAWSUIT NEWS
  8. 2016 PETITION DEADLINES, INDEPENDENTS FOR PRESIDENT
  9. 2014 PETITIONING FOR STATEWIDE OFFICE
  10. INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE ELECTED TO ARLINGTON COUNTY BOARD
  11. CALIFORNIA SPECIAL ELECTION
  12. FORMER HONOLULU MAYOR WILL RUN FOR GOVERNOR AS THE INDEPENDENT PARTY NOMINEE
  13. CANADIAN CITY WILL USE INTERNET FOR ITS OWN CITY ELECTION
  14. MISSOURI DEMOCRATS HAVE NO STATEWIDE NOMINEE THIS YEAR
  15. NEW YORK TIMES ESSAY ON VALUE OF NEW AND MINOR PARTIES
  16. LOS ANGELES TIMES ARTICLE ON HOW TOP-TWO INJURES SMALL PARTIES
  17. COFOE CONTRIBUTES $1,000 TOWARD NEVADA BALLOT ACCESS LAWSUIT
  18. SUBSCRIBING TO BAN WITH PAYPAL

OKLAHOMA BALLOT ACCESS BILL PASSES SENATE
WOULD CUT NUMBER OF SIGNATURES IN HALF

On April 23, the Oklahoma Senate passed HB 2134. The bill had passed the House on March 13. But because the Senate amended the bill, now it is back in the House to see if the House agrees with the Senate amendments.

Both versions of the bill lower the number of signatures for a newly-qualifying party from 5% of the last vote cast, to 2.5% of the same base. If it were in effect for 2014, the number of signatures would drop from 66,744 to 33,372. The bill’s effective date is November 2014.

The Senate added an amendment lowering the number of signatures for an independent presidential candidate, and the presidential nominee of an unqualified party, from 3% of the last presidential vote, to 2.5% of the last presidential vote. If that part of the bill is in effect in 2016, the number of signatures for that type of petition will be 33,372 instead of 40,046.

The vote in the Senate was 28-16. The sixteen "no" votes include 15 Republicans and one Democrat. Four Senators didn’t vote.

It may be several weeks before the House votes on the Senate amendments, because the legislature will be focused in the budget for the next few weeks. The legislature is expected to adjourn on May 30.

Another amendment the Senate added moves the independent presidential petition deadline from July 15 to July 1. And, the final Senate amendment is to provide that presidential electors who don’t vote for the presidential and vice-presidential candidate they had been pledged to are deemed to have resigned, and will be replaced by the other presidential electors. Oklahoma had a "faithless" presidential elector only once, in 1960, when an elector who was supposed to vote for Richard Nixon instead voted for Harry Byrd.

Assuming this bill becomes law, Oklahoma will still have the nation’s most restrictive law for minor party and independent presidential ballot access. All other states have some procedure that is at, or below, 2% of the last vote cast. If the bill becomes law, it will be the first time since 1924 that the Oklahoma legislature voluntarily eased ballot access restrictions.

Oklahoma has kept more significant presidential candidates off its ballot than any other state, by far. It was the only state that excluded Theodore Roosevelt in 1912. It was one of only five states that excluded Norman Thomas in 1932. It was the only southern state that excluded Strom Thurmond from the ballot in 1948. It was one of only three states that excluded Henry Wallace in 1948. It was one of only four states in which Ralph Nader never appeared on the ballot. It was one of two states that excluded Gary Johnson from the ballot in 2012, and one of only two states that excluded Libertarian 2004 nominee Michael Badnarik.

Furthermore, Oklahoma is one of only five states that bans all write-in votes. Oklahoma voters have not been permitted to vote for any presidential candidate, other than the Democratic and Republican nominees, in any presidential election since 2000. If HB 2134 is signed into law, this will be the biggest gain for ballot access since 1999, when Florida eliminated mandatory petitions for minor parties and non-presidential independent candidates that, at the time, were the severest in the nation.

Three Oklahoma newspapers have run editorials urging the legislature to ease ballot access: the Tulsa World, the Oklahoman, and the Enid News. Oddly enough, though, no Oklahoma newspaper has yet mentioned that the Senate passed HB 2134.


U.S. SUPREME COURT OPINION INCLUDES GOOD LANGUAGE FOR BALLOT ACCESS

On April 2, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in McCutcheon v FEC. Although this is a campaign finance decision, not a ballot access decision, it has language that should be helpful in ballot access lawsuits.

That language is, "There is no right more basic in our democracy than the right to participate in electing our political leaders. Citizens can exercise that right in a variety of ways. They can run for office themselves, vote, urge others to vote for a particular candidate, volunteer to work on a campaign, and contribute to a candidate’s campaign." The decision is by Chief Justice John Roberts.

The Arizona Green Party has already cited this quote, in its brief in Arizona Green Party v Bennett, which challenges the February petition deadline for new parties.

The McCutcheon decision itself struck down a law that limited the amount of money an individual can give to all federal candidates, in all races combined. Chief Justice Roberts had never before cast a vote, or written an opinion, that is helpful to minor parties or independent candidates. In 2010 he was asked to put an independent candidate for Congress on the ballot. The candidate, Herb Lux, submitted enough valid signatures, but was still kept off the ballot because he had circulated his own petition himself. He was running in a district in which he does not live, so he ran afoul of a Virginia law that did not permit anyone (even the candidate himself) to circulate outside of the district of residence. Roberts refused to put Lux on the ballot.


NEW HAMPSHIRE LEGISLATURE MAKES BALLOT ACCESS WORSE

On April 17, the New Hampshire legislature passed HB 1542, which makes it illegal for a group to circulate a petition in odd years. The bill passed the State Senate Committee and the Senate on the same day, making it difficult for activists to organize opposition to the bill.

The New Hampshire petition for an unqualified party to gain the ability to nominate candidates for all office by convention was created in 1996. It requires 3% of the last gubernatorial vote, which is so difficult, it has only been used twice, by the Libertarian Party in 2000 and 2012. Both times the Libertarian Party did this petition, the party started in the middle of the odd year preceding the election, and took a whole year to finish it. The 2000 petition started to circulate in April 1999, and the 2012 petition started in August 2011.

Federal courts in Rhode Island and Arkansas have ruled that it is unconstitutional to prevent a group from circulating a petition of this type in odd years. The Secretary of State, William Gardner, asked the legislature to pass this bill. He knew that laws similar to this were declared unconstitutional in two other states, but he did not inform the legislators. Governor Maggie Hassan hasn’t acted yet on the bill.


LEGISLATIVE NEWS

Alabama: on April 3, the legislature adjourned without passing the ballot access bills, HB 327 and SB 70. Fortunately there are two lawsuits challenging those lawsuits pending in federal court, although they won’t be in time to affect the 2014 election. Alabama will be one of only two or three states in the nation this year with a Democratic-Republican monopoly for all the statewide offices.

California: the Assembly Elections Committee will hear AB 2351 on May 6. This is the bill to reduce the number of registered voters for a group to be a qualified party.

California (2): on April 22, the Senate Elections Committee passed SCA 16, which would put a ballot measure on the November 2014 ballot asking the voters if they want to abolish special legislative elections and let the Governor appoint legislators when there is a vacancy.

Kentucky: on April 15, the legislature adjourned without having passed SB 205, which would let someone run in the same year for President or Vice-President and another office. U.S. Senator Rand Paul is up for re-election in 2016 and he probably wants to run for re-election and also run for President, but under current law, he can’t be on the ballot in the Kentucky May presidential primary if he is also running for re-election.

Louisiana: on April 8, the House passed HB 193, which deletes the law that says no party can be called the "Independent Party", and no party can have the word "Independent" as part of its name.

Maryland: on April 7, the legislature adjourned without having passed SB 1032, which would have lowered the number of registered members a group needs to remain a qualified party from 1% of the total state registration (approximately 40,000) to exactly 10,000.

Nebraska: on April 9, the Governor signed LB 1048, which lets a qualified party terminate its status as a qualified party.

New Hampshire: on April 17, the Senate defeated HB 1322, which had already passed the House. Every Republican Senator voted against the bill; every Democratic Senator voted for it. It would have lowered the vote test for a group to be a qualified party from 4% to 3%. The Deputy Secretary of State had testified in the Senate Committee that if the bill passed and if it helped the Libertarian Party regain its qualified status, the costs of election administration would increase. In the recent past, the Libertarian Party has worked for a bill to let small qualified parties nominate by convention, which would have solved that objection, but that feature was not included in this year’s bill.

Michigan: on April 3, the Governor signed HB 5152, which repeals the ban on out-of-state circulators.

New York: on April 15, the Governor signed S3149, the National Popular Vote Plan bill. The plan has now passed in states with 165 electoral votes, and will go into effect when it has passed in states with 270 electoral votes.

Tennessee: on April 22, the Governor signed SB 1466, which makes minor improvements to ballot access. For a group that wants to be a qualified party in just one county, the bill lowers the petition from 5% of the last gubernatorial vote, to 2.5%. Also the bill lowers the number of votes for such a party to remain on the ballot from 20% to 5%. Finally, the bill sets out procedures for a new party to qualify for a special congressional or legislative election; formerly there were no such procedures. The bill provides for a petition signed by 2.5% of the last gubernatorial vote within that district.

Tennessee (2): on April 1, the Senate State and Local Government Committee failed to pass SB 1091, which would have lowered the petition for a newly-qualifying party from 2.5% of the last gubernatorial vote (approximately 40,000 signatures) to exactly 2,500 signatures. The vote was 3-3, and a bill cannot advance on a tie vote.

Vermont: a conference committee has been appointed to decide whether SB 86 should move the petition deadline for independent candidates to August, or whether to keep it in June. It is possible the conference committee will opt for an August date for presidential independents, but not other independent candidates.


NATIONAL CONVENTION PUBLIC FUNDING REPEALED

On April 3, President Obama signed HR 2019, which repeals public funding for national conventions for parties that polled at least 5% in the previous presidential election. Such funding had started in 1976.


MONTANA TOP-TWO MEASURE REMOVED FROM BALLOT

On March 25, the Montana Supreme Court ruled that the ballot measure asking the voters if they want a top-two primary system should be removed from the November 2014 ballot. The legislature had placed the measure on the ballot last year. A top-two system provides that all candidates for Congress and partisan state office run on the same primary ballot, and all voters use that ballot. Then, only the two candidates who place first or second are permitted to run in the election itself. Montana primaries are in June.

The Court removed the measure from the ballot because of technical flaws. The Republican legislative majority had passed the bill, providing for a top-two ballot measure, because in 2012, the Libertarian candidates for Governor and U.S. Senator had polled 4% and 7%, and Democrats had won both offices with a plurality. The Republican legislative majority did not pass a bill implementing top-two, because it knew the Governor would veto that bill. The legislative majority was able to bypass the Governor by turning the idea into a ballot measure.

The case was MEA-MFT v State of Montana, OP 13-789. The lead plaintiff is the Montana teachers’ union.

There are two organizations which support top-two systems, the Independent Voters Network, and Independent Voting. Both groups have active web pages. But neither group has ever mentioned the Montana top-two measure. This is probably because it is embarrassing for them to acknowledge that, in this case at least, the top-two idea was openly touted by legislators as a method to eliminate a minor party from the election itself.

The technical flaw in the measure was that ballot measure titles (which are printed on the ballot), can’t be longer than 100 words. This measure had a title of almost 200 words.


LAWSUIT NEWS

Arkansas: on April 24, a lower state court ruled that the new government photo-ID law violates the state Constitution. Pulaski County Election Commission v Arkansas State Board of Election Cmsrs. The state will appeal.

California: on April 3, the Libertarian, Peace & Freedom, and Alameda County Green Parties filed their opening brief in the State Appeals Court, in their lawsuit that charges that the top-two system injures voting rights. Rubin v Bowen, A140387.

Georgia: on March 26, the Eleventh Circuit rejected the state’s request for a rehearing in Green Party of Georgia v Kemp, 13-11816. The Eleventh Circuit had originally said (on January 6, 2014) that Georgia’s ballot access law for minor party and independent presidential candidates might be too restrictive, and sent the case back for a trial. On April 4, the state asked the Eleventh Circuit to stay its ruling. The state wants to delay the trial, because it will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the Eleventh Circuit order. So far, the Eleventh Circuit hasn’t responded to the request for a delay.

Illinois: on April 25, the Seventh Circuit upheld Chicago’s ballot access law, which requires 12,500 signatures for each of the three citywide offices. Chicago has non-partisan elections. The decision points out that in 2011, nine candidates for Mayor managed to comply. Stone v Board of Election Cmsrs., 13-2733.

Iowa: on April 15, the State Supreme Court ruled that an "infamous crime" means one that is especially serious and does not mean any felony. The State Constitution says that individuals convicted of an "infamous crime" can’t register to vote unless the Governor has restored that person’s rights, but that leaves the question of which crimes are "infamous." The decision does not set forth rules to know how to classify each crime, but said that two convictions for drunk driving are not "infamous." Chiodo v The Section 43.24 Panel.

Nevada: on April 14, the State Supreme Court ruled that Nevada’s two-year residency requirement for candidates for Controller does not violate the U.S. Constitution. Schaefer v The Eighth Judicial District Court, 65361.

Nevada (2): on April 18, the Green Party filed a federal lawsuit against the April 11 petition deadline. Green Party of Nevada v Miller, 3:14cv-210. In 1993 the legislature had moved the deadline to July, in response to court rulings, but over the years moved it back to April.

New Jersey: on March 31, a lower state court struck down a law that won’t let a circulator work outside of his or her home county or city, for county and city office petitions. Back in 2007 another court had struck down the residency requirement for circulators for Congress and state office. Empower our Neighborhoods v Guadagno, Mercer Co., L-3148-11.

North Carolina: on March 25, the Fourth Circuit refused to rehear its decision in Pisano v Strach, which upheld the May petition deadline for newly-qualifying parties.

South Carolina: on April 24, the State Supreme Court ruled that a 2013 law telling parties they can’t nominate by convention unless they first hold a primary and ask their primary voters to approve the convention idea, does not apply to the state’s minor parties, all of which have always nominated by convention. The Libertarian Party had filed this case just to get the law settled. South Carolina Libt. Party v State Election Commission, 2014-775.

Tennessee: on April 11, the state appealed Green Party of Tennessee v Hargett to the Sixth Circuit. This is the case in which the U.S. District Court ruled that after a party gets on the ballot, it must be allowed two elections, not just one, to try to meet the 5% vote test to stay on the ballot. The state did not ask for an expedited hearing, so it seems the Green Party and the Constitution Party are safely on the ballot for 2014.


2016 PETITION DEADLINES, INDEPENDENTS FOR PRESIDENT

State Date Elec. Code Citation Formula for Setting Date

Ariz

September 9

16.341.G

60 days before general election

Miss

September 9

23-15-785(2)

60 days before general election

R I

September 9

17-14-11

60 days before general election

Ala

September 6

17-14-11

date named in law

N D

September 5

16.1-12-02

64 days before general election

Ky

September 2

118.365(6)

Friday before first Tuesday in Sept.

Ore

August 30

249.722(1)

70 days before general election

Wyo

August 30

22-5-301

70 days before general election

Va

August 26

24.2-543

74 days before general election

Ida

August 24

34-708(A)

date named in law

Mn

August 23

204B.09

77 days before general election

N Y

August 23

Election code 6-158.9

11 weeks before general election

La

August 19

Title 18, sec. 1255

First Friday after 3rd Tuesday in August

Iowa

August 19

44.4

81 days before general election

Tenn.

August 18

2-5-101(a)

third Thursday in 3rd month bef. electioin

Mt

August 17

13-10-504

83 days before general election

Utah

August 15

20A-9-503(3)(b)(i)

date named in law

Calif

August 12

Election code 8403(a)(1)

88 days before general election

Colo

August 10

1-4-303(1)

90 days before general election

N H

August 10

655:41 and 653:8

34 days before primary election

D C

August 10

1-1001.08

second Wednesday in August

Alas

August 10

15.30.026

90 days before general election

Ohio

August 10

3513.257

90 days before general election

Ct

August 10

Chap. 153, 9-453i

90 days before general election

Hi

August 10

Title 2, sec. 11-113(c)(2)

90 days before general election

Mass

August 2

Ch. 53, sec. 7 & 10

14 weeks before general election

Wis

August 2

8.20(8)(a)

First Tuesday in August

S D

August 2

12-7-1, 12-7-1.1

first Tuesday in August

Me

August 1

Title 21A, sec. 354.8

date named in law

N J

August 1

19:13-9

99 days before general election

Pa

August 1

Libt. Party v Davis court order

date named in consent decree

Ks

August 1

25-305

day before primary day

Md

August 1

Art. 33, sec. 703(f)

first Monday in August

W V

August 1

3-5-24

date named in law

Ark

August 1

7-8-302(6)

date named in law

Neb

August 1

32-620

date named in law

Mo

July 25

115.329

last Monday in July

Wa

July 23

29A.20.121(2)

fourth Saturday in July

Mich

July 21

168.685

110 days before general election

S C

July 15

7-13-351

date named in law (weekend goes to Mon.)

Del

July 15

Title 15, sec. 3002

date named in law

Fla

July 15

103.021(3)

date named in law

Ok

July 15

10-101.1

date named in law

Ga

July 12

21-2-132

second Tuesday in July

Nev

July 8

298.109

25 work days bef. 2nd Friday in August

Ind

July 1

3-8-6-10

date named in law (weekend goes to Mon.)

Ill

June 27

10 ILCS 5/10-6

134 days before general election

N M

June 27

1-8-52.B

22 days after primary election

Texas

June 24

Perez v State order of 3/1/2012

date named in court order

Vt

June 16

Title 17, sec. 2386 & 2356

second Thursday after first Monday in June

N C

June 9

163-122

15 days before last Friday in June

This chart shows the very large variation in the petition deadlines for independent presidential petitions, with the latest deadline three months later than the earliest deadline.


2014 PETITIONING FOR STATEWIDE OFFICE

STATE
REQUIREMENTS
SIGNATURES OR REGIS. OBTAINED
DEADLINES
FULL PARTY
CAND
LIB’T
GREEN
CONSTI
Am Elect
Party
Indp.

Ala.

44,829

44,829

0

0

0

0

June 3

June 3

Alaska

(reg) 8,925

#2,975

already on

(reg)*1,782

*2,000

0

June 1

Aug. 19

Ariz.

23,041

(est) #31,000

already on

in court

0

already on

Feb. 28

May 28

Ark.

10,000

10,000

already on

already on

0

0

*Jan 2

in court

Calif.

(reg) 103,004

65 + fee

already on

already on

too late

already on

Jan. 2

March 7

Colo.

(reg) 1,000

#1,000

already on

already on

already on

0

Jan. 8

July 10

Conn.

no procedure

#7,500

0

already on

0

0

- – -

Aug. 6

Del.

(reg) *637

*6,364

already on

already on

(reg) 384

0

Aug. 19

July 15

D.C.

no procedure

(est.) #3,900

already on

already on

can’t start

can’t start

- – -

Aug. 6

Florida

0

pay fee

already on

already on

already on

0

May 2

May 2

Georgia

50,334

#50,334

already on

0

0

0

July 8

July 8

Hawaii

706

25

already on

already on

0

0

Feb. 20

June 3

Idaho

13,102

1,000

already on

0

already on

0

Aug. 30

March 14

Illinois

no procedure

#25,000

*10,000

*4,000

*1,500

0

- – -

June 23

Indiana

no procedure

#34,195

already on

0

0

0

- – -

June 30

Iowa

no procedure

#1,500

*300

0

0

0

- – -

Aug. 15

Kansas

16,776

5,000

already on

0

0

0

June 2

Aug. 4

Ky.

no procedure

#5,000

*500

0

0

0

- – -

Aug. 12

La.

(reg) 1,000

pay fee

already on

already on

(reg) 120

0

May 15

Aug. 22

Maine

*(reg) 5,000

#4,000

0

already on

0

0

Dec 12, 13

*May 25

Md.

10,000

(est.) 40,000

already on

already on

0

already on

Aug. 4

Aug. 4

Mass.

(reg) 42,391

#10,000

0

*1,200

0

0

Nov. 5, 13

July 29

Mich.

32,261

30,000

already on

already on

already on

0

July 16

July 17

Minn.

146,297

#2,000

0

0

0

0

May 1

June 3

Miss.

be organized

1,000

already on

already on

already on

0

March 3

March 3

Mo.

10,000

10,000

already on

0

already on

0

July 28

July 28

Mont.

5,000

#11,823

already on

0

0

0

March 13

May 27

Nebr.

4,880

4,000

already on

0

0

0

Aug. 1

*Sep 2

Nev.

(reg. or pet) 9,738

250

already on

*in court

already on

0

April 11

*Feb. 6

N. Hamp.

20,779

#3,000

*50

0

0

0

Aug. 6

Aug. 6

N.J.

no procedure

#800

*100

0

0

0

- – -

June 3

N. M.

3,009

18,053

already on

0

*finished

0

June 24

June 24

N.Y.

no procedure

#15,000

can’t start

already on

can’t start

can’t start

- – -

Aug. 5

No. Car.

89,366

89,366

already on

0

0

0

*May 17

June 12

No. Dak.

7,000

1,000

already on

0

0

0

Apr. 11

Sep. 2

Ohio

27,905

5,000

already on

already on

already on

0

July 2

May 5

Okla.

66,744

pay fee

*(already)

*too late

*too late

*too late

March 3

April 11

Oregon

17,700

18,279

already on

already on

already on

0

Aug. 26

Aug. 26

Penn.

no procedure

#16,639

*2,000

*2,000

0

0

- – -

Aug. 1

R.I.

17,115

#1,000

0

0

0

0

June 2

July 11

So. Car.

10,000

10,000

already on

already on

already on

already on

May 4

July 15

So. Dak.

7,928

3,171

already on

0

already on

already on

Mar. 25

April 29

Tenn.

40,042

25

*(already)

already on

already on

0

Aug. 6

April 3

Texas

49,729

49,729

already on

already on

0

0

*May 26

June 26

Utah

2,000

#1,000

already on

too late

already on

too late

March 1

March 20

Vermont

be organized

#500

already on

0

0

0

Jan. 1

June 12

Virginia

no procedure

#10,000

*5,000

0

0

0

- – -

June 10

Wash.

no procedure

#pay fee

can’t start

can’t start

can’t start

can’t start

- – -

May 16

West Va.

no procedure

#6,516

already on

already on

*3,200

0

- – -

Aug. 1

Wisc.

10,000

#2,000

*250

0

already on

0

May 1

June 2

Wyo.

4,833

4,833

already on

0

already on

0

June 1

Aug. 25

TOTAL STATES ON
35*
20
15
5
`

# label permitted (other than "independent").
"AM ELECT = "Americans Elect."
*entry changed since April issue).
"Reg" = registrations.
"(already)" = party has placed a statewide nominee on the ballot, but party label is not allowed on ballot.


INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE ELECTED TO ARLINGTON COUNTY BOARD

On April 8, Arlington County, Virginia, held a special election for County Board. Independent candidate John Vihstadt won with an absolute majority, even though there were four candidates on the ballot. This is the first time since 1999 that any Democratic nominee ran for this position and was not elected. All the seats are at-large.


CALIFORNIA SPECIAL ELECTION

On March 26, California held a special election for State Senate, 23rd district. The results: Republican Mike Morrell 43,447; Democrat Ron O’Donnell 10,531; Democrat Ameenah Fuller 6,705; Libertarian Jeff Hewitt 4,479; Republican Crystal Ruiz 4,187. Because Morrell received over 50%, there was no run-off. This was the 86th instance at which a minor party member had run for federal or state office in a top-two primary, in a race in which there were at least two major party members also running. In all 86 instances, the minor party candidate did not place first or second in the primary.


FORMER HONOLULU MAYOR WILL RUN FOR GOVERNOR AS THE INDEPENDENT PARTY NOMINEE

On April 24, former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann said he will seek the gubernatorial nomination of the Independent Party, a new party that Hannemann helped to create earlier this year.


CANADIAN CITY WILL USE INTERNET FOR ITS OWN CITY ELECTION

Leamington, Ontario, will hold its next election for city office with internet voting. The election will be in October. Individuals without access to a computer can vote on the computer at city hall or at the city recreation center. The city has a population of 28,403. All Canadian city elections are non-partisan.


MISSOURI DEMOCRATS HAVE NO STATEWIDE NOMINEE THIS YEAR

The only statewide office up in Missouri this year is Auditor, and the Democratic Party is not running anyone for that position. The party will not lose its qualified status, however. Missouri law says a party is a group that polled at least 2% for any statewide race at either of the last two elections.


NEW YORK TIMES ESSAY ON VALUE OF NEW AND MINOR PARTIES

The Sunday New York Times of April 6 has an essay by Molly Worthen titled "As Vermont Goes, so Goes the Nation?" Worthen, a history professor, writes that the Vermont Progressive Party is an example of a minor party that is influential in implementing a new policy: that state’s single-payer system for health insurance. She also mentions the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation of Saskatchewan, a Canadian minor party that caused Saskatchewan to be the first jurisdiction in North America to create a government health-insurance system.


LOS ANGELES TIMES ARTICLE ON HOW TOP-TWO INJURES SMALL PARTIES

The April 15 Los Angeles Times has a news story on the impact that California’s top-two system is having on the state’s minor parties.


COFOE CONTRIBUTES $1,000 TOWARD NEVADA BALLOT ACCESS LAWSUIT

COFOE (the Coalition for Free & Open Elections) contributed $1,000 to the Nevada ballot access lawsuit filed in April. All of COFOE’s revenue comes from individuals like yourselves. COFOE appreciates all its members and contributors. COFOE has existed since 1985 and is a loose coalition of most of the nation’s nationally-organized minor parties, plus other organizations interested in helping create a freer ballot access system.


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