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Bob Barr Loses Connecticut ballot access case

Ballot Access News reports

On October 23, U.S. District Court Judge Janet Hall said that Connecticut need not reprint its ballots to include Bob Barr. The key factor in the decision was the state’s testimony that it would be almost impossible to reprint the ballots. Check back for further details. The party expects to appeal to the 2nd circuit.

This is the last ballot access case by any party with hope of injunctive relief this year. Unless the federal courts intervene quickly, Barr will be on the ballot in 45 states. Ralph Nader is on the ballot in 45 states plus DC, but is missing some larger states than Bob Barr. The Libertarian Party has been on the ballot in 46 or more states in every presidential election since 1988.

According to the chart at Ballot Access News, Nader is registered as an official write in choice in all the states where he is not on the ballot, except for Oklahoma, which does not count any write-in votes and has been the only state which had no independent or alternative Presidential candidates on the ballot in both 2004 and 2008. In addition to Oklahoma, Barr is not on the ballot (even as a write-in candidate) in Louisiana or West Virginia.

UPDATE: Ballot Access News also reports

Since it is now almost certain that Barr will not be on the ballot in Connecticut, it can be presumed that his name will be on ballots containing 94.6% of the voters. The calculation uses 2004 turnout data. Of course, the distribution of where the votes come from across the U.S. will not be precisely what it was in 2004, and the exact figure can’t be known until all the votes are counted in November 2008.

The last time the Libertarian Party missed putting its presidential candidate on the ballot in more than two states was 1988. In that year, Ron Paul, the Libertarian nominee, was on ballots containing 92.3% of the total vote cast. Paul missed being on in North Carolina, West Virginia, Indiana and Missouri.

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13 Comments

  1. Trent Hill Trent Hill October 23, 2008

    Ouch.

    Even worse,if the CP hadn’t suffered from the Keyes tihng and had had about $50,000 for ballot access,they’d have been on just as many ballots.

  2. Trent Hill Trent Hill October 23, 2008

    The good news is: Barr is going to benefit from Baldwin’s absence from the ballot in California, Pennsylvania, and Maine. But he’ll also suffer from the extra competition in Illinois,where the CP usually fails to gain access to the ballot.

  3. Trent Hill Trent Hill October 23, 2008

    Especially California: 26,000 votes in 2004 for michael Peroutka. I’d bet Keyes fetches that same 25,000 or so based on the AIP-brand alone, and then another 5,000 or 10,000.

    Baldwin, for his part, will probably pull down roughly 3,000 write-ins.

  4. svf svf October 23, 2008

    … I mean, it’s pretty damn outrageous in this case when — in spite of all the Barr/LP incompetence, etc. and so on — it turns out that they DID have enough valid signatures and that STILL doesn’t matter since it would be too “inconvenient” to reprint the ballots at this point, after sitting on the case for who knows how many weeks now.

    reall,y really amazing.

  5. svf svf October 23, 2008

    Barr is going to benefit from Baldwin’s absence from the ballot in California, Pennsylvania, and Maine.

    Barr ain’t on in Maine, actually (believe it or not.)

    Being the only 3rd party choice in Indiana is also a nice bonus.

  6. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli Post author | October 23, 2008

    Being the only 3rd party choice in Indiana is also a nice bonus.

    Also Texas, which is bigger, and North Carolina and Georgia.

    Nader is the only alternative candidate in Connecticut now.

    Maine has Greens and Nader, but no LP or CP.

  7. richardwinger richardwinger October 23, 2008

    There is a rumor that Baldwin failed to file for write-in status in California. But when I telephone the Secretary of State of California, they say that information will not be released until Friday. Earlier they had said it would be available on Thursday (today).

  8. richardwinger richardwinger October 23, 2008

    That rumor was wrong. Baldwin is a declared write-in candidate in California.

  9. Trent Hill Trent Hill October 23, 2008

    “Being the only 3rd party choice in Indiana is also a nice bonus.

    Also Texas, which is bigger, and North Carolina and Georgia.”

    I was specifically referencing states where the CP candidate USUALLY is, but isnt this year.

  10. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli Post author | October 23, 2008

    Winger in BAN comments:

    The Connecticut Libertarian Party was told that the deadline to file as a write-in was 10 days before the election. They tried to file and were then told that really the deadline was 14 days (in other words, the day before they filed). The attorney for the Libertarian Party asked the Secretary of State’s attorneys during a break in court today how they would react if he raised asking for write-in status. They told him they would emphatically fight him on that, so he didn’t try. Anyway, the write-in matter wasn’t in the original complaint.

  11. AnthonyD AnthonyD October 23, 2008

    Well, this is no suprise. The only thing this proves is the waste of time and money it is to appeal to the courts to try to get put on the ballot in any state the LP fails to get on through the normal process.

    The LP’s repeated attempts for 50 state ballot access are quixotic, to say the least. Each presidential election cycle. the LP should decide beforehand which states are too costly to try to get on the ballot in, then just forget them. Can’t be more than 5-6 states, I would think.

    Furthermore, in the instances where the LP fails to get on the ballot in one of the remaining states , due to a screw-up or a hurricane with bad timing, don’t even bother suing. Use the saved moneys on advertising in the states the LP is on the ballot on.

  12. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli Post author | October 24, 2008

    The LP didn’t miss any states in 1980, 1992, 1996 or 2000, although Arizona had a different LP candidate in 2o00.

    In 2004, they would have only missed Oklahoma, but there was a screwup in NH.

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