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Larry Meeker, a former Vice-President of the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank, and a former two-term Mayor of Lake Quivira, Kansas, will run as an independent candidate for the Kansas House of Representatives, 17th district. See this story. Meeker had intended to run as a Democrat this year for that seat, but he can’t appear on the August Democratic primary ballot because election officials misplaced his qualifying paperwork. So, he instead petitioned to be on the ballot as an independent candidate.
Lake Quivira is a suburb of Kansas City.
Reform Party of Kansas Nominates Chuck Baldwin for President (July 26, 2012, 05:24 PM)
According to the Kansas Secretary of State, in June 2012, the ballot-qualified Reform Party nominated Chuck Baldwin for President and Joseph Martin for Vice-President, and certified these candidates to the Secretary of State.
Chuck Baldwin was the Constitution Party’s presidential nominee in 2008. In 2010 he moved from Florida to Kila, Montana, where he is a pastor. He has a web page but it doesn’t indicate that he is running for President, or any office, in 2012. During 2011 he had said he would run as a Republican for Lieutenant Governor of Montana, but later he changed his mind and did not run for any office in the 2012 primary in Montana. It is not known if Baldwin wishes to run for President in 2012, or even if he has been informed of his nomination.
In 2008, the Reform Party of Kansas had nominated Baldwin for President. The Reform Party of Kansas nominated Ralph Nader in 2004.
American Independent Party Sets Location of Presidential Nominating Convention (July 26, 2012, 04:24 PM)
The American Independent Party of California will choose a presidential nominee on August 11, in Sacramento. The meeting will be at Perkos Restaurant at 925 Third Street, at the corner of J Street. The Saturday session starts at 9:30 a.m. and is set to last until 5 p.m. There are also proceedings at the same location on Friday evening, August 10.
Justice Party Sues Hawaii Over February Petition Deadline for Newly-Qualifying Parties (July 26, 2012, 04:13 PM)
On July 18, the Justice Party filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against the Hawaii petition deadline for newly-qualifying parties. That deadline is February 23. The case is Justice Party v Nago, cv-12-403. The case also challenges the Hawaii practice of disqualifying signatures signed by rural voters, when those rural voters show their post office box as their address. The state wants a residence address, but in many parts of rural Hawaii, the residence address is a 13-digit identifier used by the real property tax office, and an ordinary individual doesn’t know that number without checking paperwork.
The Hawaii deadline for newly-qualifying parties was in April in 1986, and a U.S. District Court in 1986 issued injunctive relief against that deadline on the grounds that it was too early. However, the attorney for the Libertarian Party, which won that injunctive relief, never returned to court later to get declaratory relief. Since then, the legislature not only did not change the law to create a later deadline, it did the opposite, and made it even earlier.
No other state has such an early petition deadline, when the laws of all the states are compared, using the later method for placing a candidate on the November ballot with the party label. Hawaii does have a procedure for an independent presidential candidate to get on the ballot, which has a September deadline. But that procedure does not permit the party label on the ballot.
U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter will hear arguments in Delegates to the Republican National Convention v Republican National Committee on August 6, at 8:30 a.m., in the federal courthouse in Santa Ana, California (case number 8:12-cv-927). This is the lawsuit filed by 119 Republican national convention delegates who charge that the Republican national presidential convention process is flawed. The Republican National Committee has filed a motion to dismiss the case. The Republican National Committee is also arguing that a great deal of evidence submitted by the plaintiffs should be rejected, because it was filed late and some of it wasn’t properly served on the defendant.
The overwhelming majority of plaintiffs are Ron Paul delegates. The plaintiffs also include some voters and other individuals who are not delegates.
On July 25, attorneys for the Pennsyvlania elections office filed a brief in Constitution Party v Aichele, the case filed by the Constitution, Green and Libertarian Parties over the unique Pennsylvania system that puts petitioning groups at risk of paying court costs of up to $110,000 if their petitions are found insufficient. The state’s brief says the parties don’t have standing to challenge the system. The case is in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, 5:12-cv-2726.
This U.S. News & World Report story says that Janet Brown, veteran director of the Commission on Presidential Debates, is very aware of the campaign to get Gary Johnson included in the presidential debates. The headline of the US News & World Report story is misleading. The real substance is that reporters now know that the Commission is aware of unhappiness with the process, which not only requires that Johnson receive 15% in public opinion polls, but that most polls don’t even include him.
Two economics professors at Gonzaga University in Spokane have published “The Effect of the Top Two Primary on the Number of Primary Candidates.” It will appear in a future issue of the Social Science Quarterly, journal of the Southwestern Social Science Association. It is already available on-line, but it requires payment. See here for the link to the article on the Wiley Online Library.
The article is by John H. Beck and Kevin E. Henrickson. Comparing the Washington state classic open primaries of 2004 and 2006 with the top-two primaries of 2008 and 2010, the article conclude that the top-two system appears to have caused a reduction in the number of Democrats who run for the Washington state legislature. Each year, there are 123 or 124 regularly-scheduled legislative races in Washington state, and the study uses complex statistical analysis to show that, in the average election year under top-two, 18 to 19 fewer Democrats run for the legislature than if the top-two system did not exist. The evidence in the article is entirely statistical, except for one anecdote, in which the chair of the Democratic Party is quoted as saying, “I, as party chair, have to go and talk people into not participating, and I think that’s really unfortunate.”
The reason party leaders discourage party members from running is that if a major party has too many candidates for a single seat, the party is in some danger that no member will qualify for the November ballot. The article thus provides evidence for the point that top-two open primary systems reduce voter choice in primaries, and enhance the power of “party bosses”. Thanks to Mark Rogalski for news of the article.
Emily Bazelon has this article in Slate. Apparently, the expert evidence in the ongoing Pennsylvania trial on the Pennsylvania law requiring Government Photo-ID to vote at the polls suggests that the law could disenfranchise more Republicans than Democrats. Thanks to Rick Hasen’s ElectionLawBlog for the link.
Mmoja Ajabu, a candidate for U.S. House in Indiana’s 7th district, is being kept off the November ballot because he turned in photocopies of his petitions instead of the originals. See this story. He plans to sue to overturn that decision.
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