Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Ohio's restrictions on minority party ballot access halted

Ohio's most recent attempt at a ballot access law has gone the way of its predecessors. Today, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction against the "patently unfair" law that restricts the ability of minor parties to gain access to the ballot in 2014. Secretary of State Jon Husted has not yet said whether the state will appeal the decision.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports:

District Court Judge Michael Watson granted a preliminary injunction preventing the state from enforcing the Republican-backed law, which prevents Ohio’s four minor parties from holding a 2014 primary election and strips them of state recognition.


Under the law, minor parties would have to scramble to collect 28,000 voter signatures by next July to regain official recognition. Parties that meet that requirement would then have to submit to the state a list of candidates to appear on the November ballot instead of holding a primary.


In a 28-page opinion, Watson said the law retroactively penalizes minor-party candidates who filed for office before Gov. John Kasich signed the measure into law last November. It also stops minor parties from reaping the political benefits of holding a primary, he said.

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