Redlich v. NY Board of Elections
I am sorry to advise that on June 15, 2011, Albany County Supreme Court Justice Richard Platkin granted defendants’ motion to dismiss the Article 78 (mandamus) challenge to the Board’s final determination of Warren Redlich’s vote total six months earlier on purely procedural grounds.
Both Warren and I felt strongly that that the confusion created by placing more than one party’s candidate for the same office in the same column, the intentional and/or negligent undercounting of military and absentee ballots and the likelihood that various local county boards of election failed to count every vote cast after the results were known warranted review by the judiciary; unfortunately Justice Platkin chose not to consider any of our arguments on the merits of the lawsuit.
On the other hand, I am immensely proud of the terrific results which the Redlich campaign did achieve, from the overwhelming petition submission last August, to Warren’s fine performance in the televised debate with six other candidates for the New York Governor’s race, to achieving far more votes for Governor than any other Libertarian candidate in the history of the New York LP.
We are all disappointed to have missed the statists’ arbitrary line in the sand by only 1,600 votes, but know that we will surpass the 50,000 votes needed for party status in 2014.
Background story from Ballot Access News:
New York State Court Dismisses Libertarian Lawsuit on 2010 Gubernatorial Tally
Ballot Access News / June 25th, 2011
On June 15, a New York Supreme Court Judge in Albany dismissed the lawsuit Redlich v New York State Board of Canvassers, 1623-11, on procedural grounds. This is the lawsuit in which the Libertarian Party argued that its gubernatorial nominee in 2010, Warren Redlich, might very well have received 50,000 votes if the Libertarian Party had not been squeezed into a party column with another party. The lawsuit also argued that not all absentee votes had been counted and if they had been, the party might have been credited with at least 50,000 votes. If the party had received 50,000 votes, it would now be a qualified party. Instead it was credited with 48,386 votes.
The case was dismissed on the grounds that it should have been filed within 30 days of the official canvass of votes.
The New York Libertarian Party has another election lawsuit pending in federal court, on a different issue. That case, Credico v New York State Board of Elections, challenges the state law that says if a candidate is nominated by two unqualified parties, he or she can only be listed once on the ballot. By contrast, if a candidate is nominated by a qualified party and an unqualified party, or by two qualified parties, he or she is listed twice. That case is undergoing discovery.
Another similar case, Conservative Party of New York v New York State Board of Elections, is also pending in federal court. That case challenges the state policy on how to count votes when a voter casts two votes in a single race, for the same person but on two different party lines. The state gives the vote to the party that is higher on the ballot than the other party.
In response to Comment 6:
I am the elected Political Director and Membership Director of the Libertarian Party of Queens County, the largest chapter in the New York Libertarian Party. I have a voice and I express it.
Good try for the team, guys. Thanks for going toe to toe with them. Better luck next time (or with an appeal regarding the judge’s application of the 30-day standard); and of course good luck with LPNY’s campaigns next year.
Ignore the Objectivist Party muckraker.
Mark is correct, it was a strategic decision taken given the limited resources of the party and suit contributors. Asking a court to overturn a BOE result is different then seeking relief on a specific basis. The certified BOE result didn’t even come until the middle of December. The fourth month Article 78 window was a better risk all around.
Thanks to Warren for all his efforts. Likewise Mark Axinn.
The action was timely filed as Article 78 proceeding (which has a four-month statute of limitations).
BOE argued the 30-day S/L to overturn election results applies instead (even though that was not what we were trying to do–everyone knew Cuomo won the election and we never challenged the result). Unfortunately, Justice Platkin accepted that argument.
@Dr. Tom Stevens – I would never second guess a lawsuit, without reading all the papers. And, I would never second guess it in favor of the facist duopoly who run our courts. I can think of a few reasons why the situation might have occurred. For example: The judge might have forced the lawsuit into the mold of mere “vote counting” according to a BOE schedule, and the electoral activists filing may have been trying (rightfully) to assert it is a Constitutional issue, which would have theoretically given them more time. Anyway, I am glad they tried something to fight back against tyranny.
I commend Warren Redlich, Mark Axxin and all the other New York Libertarians for a fine campaign. I wish them the best in 2014.
Money was collected for this lawsuit. I am told attorney Gary Donoyan wrote the legal documents and attorney Warren Redlich filed the suit. Neither apparently checked whether they were required to file the lawsuit within a certain time period. They left that for the Board of Elections to raise in its Motion to Dismiss.
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