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Alabama: 11th Circuit upholds restrictive ballot access law

Ballot Access News reports: On June 29, the 11th circuit upheld Alabama’s ballot access law for new and minor parties, and for non-presidential independent candidates. That law, first put into effect in 1998, requires a petition of 3% of the last gubernatorial vote. The decision was by Judge Frank Hull, who already had a bad record on ballot access. She had previously upheld Georgia’s district petition requirement of a petition signed by 5% of the number of registered voters, even though no minor party candidate has used that petition for U.S. House in 63 years.

The decision is Swanson v Worley, no. 06-13643. The decision does not mention that a law virtually identical to Alabama’s was declared unconstitutional law year in U.S. District Court in Arkansas. Nor does the decision mention the favorable ballot access in 2006 in Illinois and Ohio, in the 7th and 6th circuits. The decision does not mention the U.S. Supreme Court’s teaching in Storer v Brown, and in Mandel v Bradley, that ballot access laws that are seldom used are probably unconstitutional. -- 11th Circuit Upholds Alabama Ballot Access Law

The opinion is available here.

Thanks to Richard Winger for the tip.

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