New Hampshire Ballot Access Challenge Continues

 

 

 

” A federal judge has ruled that the Libertarian Party can proceed with its challenge to a New Hampshire law it claims could prevent its candidates from getting on the ballot.

  A third party can have its nominees placed on the New Hampshire general election ballot by winning at least 4 percent of the vote for either governor or U.S. senator in the most recent election or by collecting signatures equal to 3 percent of the total votes cast during the prior election. Under a law that took effect in July, parties can’t begin gathering those signatures until Jan. 1 of the election year.

  The state argues that the change ensures that signatures on nomination papers are valid, but the Libertarian Party sued, arguing that it would make it difficult, if not impossible, for the party to petition its way onto the ballot.

  The state asked the court to dismiss the lawsuit, but U.S. District Court Judge Paul Barbadoro refused. In a ruling this week, he noted that the right to vote must be balanced against the state’s interest in conducting orderly elections, but said whether or not the new restrictions are reasonable depends on factors that have yet to be explored.

” The state offers a number of arguments in favor of dismissal, but none are persuasive,” he wrote.”

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