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Democrats (but not the Party) sue to keep Nader off the Arizona ballot

Democrats attempted to put a roadblock in front of independent candidate Ralph Nader's efforts to gain access to the presidential ballot in Arizona, with the filing of a lawsuit by two Arizona residents challenging the validity of the petitions submitted by Nader's campaign.

The suit underscores the determination of the Democrats to try to frustrate Nader's efforts to qualify for state ballots. It is a shift from four years ago, when party officials and the campaign of Vice President Al Gore generally ignored Nader, who was running as the Green Party candidate, in the hope that his campaign would not attract support.

The suit, filed in superior court in Maricopa County in Phoenix, charges that, of the 21,512 signatures on Nader's petitions, only 6,045 are valid. State law requires Nader to submit 14,694 valid signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Although state law prohibits a political party from filing or financing such suits, the state party provided space in its office for volunteers and staff members working on their own time to review the signatures. -- Democrats Sue to Block Nader From Ariz. Ballot (washingtonpost.com)