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  Ballot Access News is edited and published by Richard Winger, the nation's leading expert on ballot access legal issues.

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New York Revises Voter Registration Form to List All Eight Ballot-Qualified Parties

Published on February 27, 2015,

Here is the latest version of the New York state voter registration form. It has been revised to list the two parties that became ballot-qualified in November 2014, the Women’s Equality Party and the Reform Party (which changed its name recently and had been the Stop Common Core Party). Thanks to Michael Drucker for the link.

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Virginia Republicans File Lawsuit Against Law that Lets Incumbents Determine How Party Nominates

Published on February 27, 2015,

Virginia law allows qualified parties to nominate by primary or convention. However, the law also says that when an incumbent is running for re-election, he or she can make the decision of how the party nominates. On February 25, the Republican Committee of the 24th State Senate District filed a federal lawsuit, alleging that letting the office-holder decide, rather than the party, violates the party’s freedom of association to make the decision. Adams v Alcorn, w.d., 5:15cv-12.

The incumbent State Senator wants a primary, and the party wants to nominate by convention. See this story.

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Minnesota Bill to Establish Presidential Primary in March

Published on February 27, 2015,

Minnesota hasn’t had a presidential primary since 1992, and is usually the second most populous state (after Washington state) that uses caucuses instead. But Senator Julianne Ortman (R-Chanhassen) has introduced SF 1205, which would bring back a presidential primary and hold it in March. The bill would also move the primary for other office from August to March. The bill has two co-sponsors, both Republicans. See this story.

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Op-Ed Discusses Independent Party of Oregon’s Impact on 2016 Election

Published on February 27, 2015,

This op-ed in The Oregonian discusses the Independent Party’s impact on the Oregon elections of 2016. The author, Tim Nesbitt, speculates that because the Independent Party will probably have a government-administered primary, and because the Oregon Independent Party will let independent voters vote in its primary, that may put pressure on the two major parties to also let independent voters vote in their primaries.

The op-ed does not mention that both major parties in the past let independent voters vote in their primaries. The Democrats allowed that in 1998 and 2000. The Republicans allowed it in 2002.

The op-ed also mentions HB 2177, now pending in the legislature. It would put people on the voter rolls automatically if they have a drivers license or state ID card. But, if it passes, chances are the Independent Party will slip below 5% of the total state registration, and won’t have a government primary in 2018. That is because, if the bill passes, all those new voters will automatically be listed as independent voters, not as party members, unless they respond to an inquiry asking if they want to be members of a party. Because there will be so many newly-registered voters, probably the Independent Party’s registration, as a percentage of the entire registered electorate, will slip. The Independent Party has already noticed this and has expressed concerns HB 2177.

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February 2015 Ballot Access News Print Edition

Published on February 26, 2015,

Ballot Access News
February 1, 2015 – Volume 30, Number 9


This issue was printed on white paper.



Table of Contents

  1. BALLOT ACCESS BILLS INTRODUCED IN SIX STATES
  2. SOUTH DAKOTA BILL MAY BE AMENDED TO EASE DEADLINE
  3. STRAIGHT-TICKET BILLS
  4. VIRGINIA BALLOT ACCESS BILLS LOSE
  5. PENNSYLVANIA BALLOT ACCESS CHAMPION GAINS KEY POST
  6. TWO EVENTS BOLSTER MORE INCLUSIVE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES
  7. PROCEDURAL VICTORY FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE BALLOT ACCESS CASE
  8. COURT UPHOLDS VIRGINIA’S DISCRIMINATORY BALLOT FORMAT
  9. U.S. DISTRICT COURT UPHOLDS CALIFORNIA WRITE-IN BAN
  10. MONTANA REPUBLICAN PARTY LEGAL SETBACK
  11. MORE LAWSUIT NEWS
  12. 2014 VOTE FOR GOVERNOR
  13. 2014 VOTE FOR LOWER HOUSE OF STATE LEGISLATURE
  14. VIRGINIA ELECTS AN INDEPENDENT TO LEGISLATURE
  15. MARYLAND GREENS ARE ON BALLOT
  16. N.Y. WORKING FAMILIES PARTY HAS ITS BEST VOTE SHOWING EVER, FOR OFFICE OTHER THAN GOVERNOR
  17. LIBERTARIANS ARE ONLY PARTY THAT FILED INTENT TO QUALIFY IN MAINE
  18. CONSTITUTION PARTY GAINS AN ALABAMA OFFICE-HOLDER
  19. STOP COMMON CORE PARTY SAYS IT WILL CHANGE ITS NAME TO “REFORM”
  20. SUBSCRIBING TO BAN WITH PAYPAL

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Mississippi Sets May 12 for Special U.S. House Election

Published on February 26, 2015,

Mississippi will hold a special U.S. House election on May 12. See this story.