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Nader hearings start in Pennsylvania

AP reports: A Pennsylvania court Monday opened eight simultaneous hearings across the state on Ralph Nader's nomination papers, while a Nader lawyer attacked a central premise of the review by arguing that officials should accept the signatures of people who are not registered to vote.

Nader, who is on the ballot in more than 30 states, is trying to fend off a challenge to more than 30,000 of his 47,000 signatures as he seeks to run for president in Pennsylvania as an independent.

In a motion filed in Commonwealth Court in Harrisburg, Nader attorney Basil C. Culyba said state law allows only registered voters to sign the nominating petitions for major-party candidates, but permits any "qualified elector" to sign the nomination papers of independent candidates like Nader.

Culyba, a Washington, D.C., lawyer brought in after Nader's original Pennsylvania lawyer quit last week, reportedly after a dispute over money and strategy, said a qualified elector is anyone who will be 18 and a Pennsylvania resident by the Nov. 2 election. -- Nader challenge focus of statewide court hearings in Pa. (AP via PennLive.com)