Home Uncategorized Virginia Sued Over Discriminatory Order of Candidates on the Ballot
formats

Virginia Sued Over Discriminatory Order of Candidates on the Ballot

On July 2, some Libertarian Party candidates, and an independent candidate, filed a federal lawsuit against the Virginia law that always puts the Democratic and Republican nominees on the ballot on the top-most position. Sarvis v Judd, eastern district, 3:14cv-479. Here is a copy of the 17-page Complaint.

The case is assigned to U.S. District Court Judge Robert Payne, who has an excellent record on cases involving minor parties and independent candidates. See his dissent in Fishbeck v Hechler, 85 F.3d 162 (4th circuit, 1996). In that case, while sitting on a Circuit Court panel, he dissented when the other two judges upheld West Virginia ballot access laws in a Libertarian Party challenge to the May petition deadline for non-presidential candidates.

7 Responses

  1. There is an error in paragraph 21 of the filing, which reads:

    “any party which has not achieved at least 10% of the vote in at least two of the immediately preceding general elections cannot be a ‘political party’ under Virginia Code § 24.2-613 and, thus, cannot be placed in the number one position on the next ballot.”

    That should read “which has not achieved at least 10% of the vote in at least one of the two immediately preceding general elections.”

    The law was changed after the 1990 general election, when the Democratic Party had no candidate for the U.S. Senate and lost its ballot status. At the time, the law required a party to receive at least 10% of the vote in the immediately preceding election. When Virginia Democrats, who controlled both houses of the General Assembly and the governorship at the time, realized they had lost their ballot status, they liberalized the law to allow the 10% threshold to count in either of the two preceding elections.

  2. I found an even more glaring error in the filing, but it can be forgiven, even if it is on page 1.

    The defendants are listed as “CHARLES E. JUDD, DONALD PALMER
    and KIMBERLY T. BOWERS, in their individual and official capacities as members of the Virginia State Board of Elections.”

    As of July 1, 2014 (yesterday), the Virginia State Board of Elections no longer exists. It is now the “Department of Elections” and Donald Palmer is no longer Secretary. He has been replaced by Edgardo Cortes, whose title is Commissioner of Elections.

    I’m sure these matters will be rectified before the law suit moves forward.

  3. I need to clarify my last comment.

    Don Palmer remains as Secretary of the State Board of Elections (which continues to exist). He no longer is the chief administrator of elections in Virginia. That job now belongs to Edgardo Cortes as Commissioner of the Department of Elections.

    The State Board of Elections supervises the Department of Elections much as local Electoral Boards supervise their offices of voter registration and elections. The SBE’s secretary’s role is now diminished from what it has been in the past and no longer has responsibility for day-to-day operations.

    To that extent, the defendants in the law suit are properly those named — although I would think the Commissioner might be added at a later date.

    As the law redefining these various roles just took effect Tuesday, there was some confusion in my mind about them.

  4. The amount of time and money put into these lawsuits could be better spent on working with people under pure proportional representation.

    Now that Sarvis is the Vice Chair of the Libertarian Party we can all see where their party will be heading and the policies being set.

    I’m sure the attorneys they’re fighting will love the law and they’ll be making overtime. But I personally believe that it’s such a travesty to see the Libertarian Party embark in that direction.

    The Gary Johnsons, Aaron Starrs, Jim Greys and now Robert Sarvis litigates should quit dragging people in court and instead engage the team that’s doing the real work establishing truly representative government.

    The good work isn’t spending money on lawsuits but it’s working under and investing into a system of pure proportional representation which allows people the liberty to self-categorize, still be welcomed to the team and one that generates unity, confidence and trust.

    A system which also wins representation for 3rd parties, women, low income and people who are general blocked from representation in government.

    The Sainte-Lague parliament system does all those thing and and the 9th USA Parliament has been identifying and attracting cool team players for 19 consecutive years. It works great!

    Won’t you join us?
    http://www.usparliament.org

  5. I too should re-phrase my comment;

    The amount of time and money being spent on these lawsuits could be better spent on working WITH people under pure proportional representation.

    Now that Robert Sarvis is the Vice Chair of the national Libertarian Party we can all see where their party will probably be heading and the policies being set in the not too distant future.

    I’m sure that the attorneys they’re fighting will love this lawsuit because they’ll probably be making overtime.

    I personally believe that it’s a travesty to see the Libertarian Party continue in this direction.

    The Gary Johnsons, Aaron Starrs, Jim Greys and now Robert Sarvis litigates should stop dragging people into courts.

    Instead engage the team that’s doing the real work establishing truly representative government.

    The good work isn’t spending money on lawsuits.

    It’s working under and investing into a system of pure proportional representation which allows people the liberty to self-categorize, they’d still be welcomed to a team that generates unity, confidence and trust, and they’d further the education of the voters so that they can learn how democracy can be an uplifting and positive experience by example.

    A system which also wins representation for 3rd parties, women, low income and people who are general blocked from representation in government.

    The Sainte-Lague parliament system does all of these things.

    Believe it or not, the 9th USA Parliament has been identifying and attracting cool team players for 19 consecutive years and it works great!

    Won’t you join us?
    http://www.usparliament.org

    –James Ogle
    (831) 383-1409

  6. Richard Winger

    Rick Sincere, thank you for you very helpful information.

  7. Demo Rep

    Due to the *moron* vote, how many Aardvard folks get elected compared to Zylophone folks ???

    Remedy –
    Half the ballots A to Z
    Half the ballots Z to A.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>