It’s true that Texas Democrats did not file a candidate in the race for Comptroller, leaving only Republican incumbent Susan Combs versus two third-party candidates. But that doesn’t mean this race doesn’t represent a loss for Democrats (at least, in future elections). We previously reported that if the Green Party took more than 5 percent in this race, they would be in a position to chip away at close Democratic races in upcoming years — the same as what Libertarians theoretically do to Republican candidates. Well, it seems that Green Party candidate for Comptroller Edward Lindsay took 6.34 percent (or 251,842 votes), which puts the Greens over the 5 percent rule required by Texas election law for the same automatic ballot placement that the Libertarians, Republicans and Democrats enjoy.
And from the Libertarian Party:
For Immediate Release
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Libertarian Party of Texas
Libertarians secure ballot access through 2014
AUSTIN, TEXAS – November 4, 2010 — The Libertarian Party of Texas ensured its candidates will automatically appear on the 2012 election ballot by exceeding 5% in several statewide races. Libertarian candidates J Randall Stevens (Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals Place 2), Dave Howard (Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals Place 5), and Mary Ruwart (Comptroller of Public Accounts) significantly surpassed the qualification requirement to retain the party’s ballot status.
Additionally, Libertarian candidate for Governor Kathie Glass exceeded the 2% requirement to maintain that party’s ballot status through 2014.
“We are very happy to inform our candidates and membership that we will continue to offer Texas voters a Libertarian choice for 4 more years” said state chair Pat Dixon.
The party placed over 150 candidates on the Texas ballot in 2010, but Dixon is not satisfied. “There were many offices for which we did not place a Libertarian on the ballot in 2010. We need to recruit more candidates and offer a Libertarian choice for every Texas voter.”
Several Libertarian candidates have already committed to file for office in the 2012 elections.
Ballot Access News reports that
[T]he Libertarian Party polled over 2% for Governor, so it not only retains qualified status for 2012, but 2014 as well. The Green Party kept qualified status but only for 2012, not 2014.
In news from other big states which require large amounts of signatures in a short time, the Greens gained ballot access in New York, but lost it in Illinois. Both parties were among those that kept ballot access in California (see BAN story linked above). Richard Winger and LPNY chair Mark Axinn expressed cautious optimism that the Libertarians may also gain ballot access in New York through votes that have yet to be counted.