Thursday, July 30, 2020

Voters Across The Nation Unite To #LetHerSpeak!


by Laura Burrows, Los Alamos Libertarian Party

On August 8 at 10:30 a.m., protesters are gathering in the first nationwide #LetHerSpeak driving protest in counties all across the nation. The Los Alamos Libertarian Party will lead a group of local community members in a COVID-safe demonstration, driving convoy style down Trinity Drive, and Diamond and Central (see google maps specific route plan). They will be decorating their cars parade-style and will “go live” together on their social media channels.
This is a coordinated effort across the nation to protest the Commission on Presidential Debates continued decision to silence the Libertarian Nominee for the United States President, Dr. Jo Jorgensen, and all third parties are who are listed on the presidential ballot...
To read more, click here.

News Story About New Hampshire Ballot Access Decision

Ballot Access News

Here is a news story about the July 28 decision that gave ballot access relief to New Hampshire minor party and independent candidates. The news story does not mention that New Hampshire does not allow stand-ins on presidential petitions. This is relevant because the Libertarian Party could not have been petitioning for president in New Hampshire until after its national convention in late May.

Seven Presidential Petitions Succeed in New Jersey

Ballot Access News

Here is the list of presidential candidates who will be on the ballot in New Jersey (not including the Democratic and Republican nominees): the nominees of the Alliance, Constitution, Green, Libertarian, Socialism & Liberation, and Unity Parties, and independent Kanye West. New Jersey requires 800 signatures, due on July 27. The state has already checked these petitions. Thanks to Thomas Jones for this news.

Kanye West is Petitioning in New York

Ballot Access News

According to this story, Kanye West is circulating a petition to be on the ballot for president in New York, with the partisan label “Birthday Party.” Thanks to the commenters for this link. The requirement is 30,000 signatures, due July 30, Thursday.

Party for Socialism & Liberation Will Place Presidential Nominee on Illinois Ballot

The Party for Socialism and Liberation presidential nominee, Gloria La Riva, will appear on the Illinois ballot this year. This is the first time a party with “socialist” or “socialism” has been on the ballot for president in Illinois since 1992, when the Socialist Workers Party was on. La Riva submitted approximately 4,500 signatures. The legal requirement is 2,500.
Monday, July 27, was the deadline for challenges, and no one challenged the PSL petition.
The Illinois State Board of Elections website is confusing. If a petition is submitted with a number of raw signatures below 10% of the requirement, the State Board removes the person on its own initiative, yet the Board still posts the names of candidates who file such inadequate petitions. The Board’s website lists Kyle Kopitke and Don Blankenship as presidential candidates who were not challenged, but both of them have already received a letter rejecting their candidacy because they had fewer than 250 signatures, so they will not be on the ballot, notwithstanding their being listed on the Board’s website.
The American Solidarity Party submitted a presidential petition for its nominee, Brian Carroll. It has more than 250 signatures, and no one challenged it, so Carroll will also be on the ballot.
Kanye West submitted approximately 4,000 signatures, but he is being challenged. The challenge process will proceed in August.
The Libertarian and Green Parties did not need to petition for president, due to having won a court case.

Democratic Party Sues Montana Secretary of State to Remove Green Party from Ballot

Ballot Access News

The Democratic Party has filed a state court lawsuit to remove the Green Party from the Montana ballot, even though everyone agrees that the party’s petition for party status this year had enough valid signatures. Also the party has already participated in the June 2020 primary. The Democratic Party obtained a list of voters who had signed the petition, and asked them to remove their names from the petition. At issue is whether enough people made that request by the deadline. Even the deadline itself is murky. See this story. Thanks to Rick Hasen for the link.

New Jersey Only Has Five Candidates on Ballot for U.S. Senate

Ballot Access News

This year, New Jersey only has five candidates for U.S. Senate on the ballot. They are the nominees of the Democratic, Republican, and Green Parties, and two independent candidates. That is the smallest number of candidates for that office in New Jersey since 1990, when there were also five candidates.
The Green nominee is Madelyn R. Hoffman. The independents are Daniel Burke and Veronica Fernandez. Usually, New Jersey vies with Tennessee and Vermont in having the most U.S. Senate candidates on the general election ballot.

Virginia Constitution Party Nominates Sheila Tittle for President

Ballot Access News

On July 25, the Virginia Constitution Party nominated Sheila “Samm” Tittle for president, and Matthew Hehl for vice-president. The party is not ballot-qualified, but will try to collect 2,500 valid signatures before the deadline, August 21.

Kanye West Paid $10 Per Signature in Illinois

Ballot Access News

This Patch story says Kanye West’s campaign paid circulators $10 per signature, in Illinois. As far as is known, Illinois is the only state in which West has filed a ballot access petition. It has been challenged and it may take a few weeks to adjudicate that challenge.

Alliance Party Now Ballot-Qualified in Mississippi

Ballot Access News

The Alliance Party is now ballot-qualified in Mississippi. In that state, a group becomes a qualified party by submitting a list of party officers. Mississippi has had that law ever since 1890, when the state first instituted government-printed ballots. Mississippi is the only state that has never changed its original definition of a qualified party.

Five Illinois Voters Challenge Kanye West’s Independent Presidential Petition

Ballot Access News

On July 24, five Illinois voters filed a challenge to the Kanye West independent presidential petition.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Libertarian and Green Party Candidates Are Making Surprising Appearances in 2020 Election Polls

Jo Jorgensen and Howie Hawkins
LP Candidate Jo Jorgensen & GP Candidate Howie Hawkins
by Jason Lemon,

As the 2020 presidential election is now less than four months away, Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins and Libertarian Party candidate Jo Jorgensen are registering 
support in national polls, signaling that their respective 
messages resonate with a segment of voters frustrated
with Democrats and Republicans.

"The two governing parties are presiding over a failed state. The coronavirus epidemic, the 
climate meltdown, inequality with declining working-class life expectancies and a nuclear 
arms race out of control with none of the candidates talking about it," Hawkins, 67, who co-founded the U.S. Green Party in the 1990s, told Newsweek in an interview. "So, we need to go in another direction."

Jorgensen, 63, has voiced similar frustration. "There is an ugly two-headed monster ruling our country who is destroying our economy, invading our privacy, and eating away our rights,"recent campaign email for the candidate said, taking aim at Republicans and Democrats...

To read article in full, click here.

Five Presidential Petitions Filed in Illinois, but Blankenship Petition Already Rejected

Ballot Access News

On July 20, the deadline for minor party and independent petitions in Illinois, five petitions were submitted for president: Kanye West as an independent; Kyle Kopitke as an independent; the Party for Socialism and Liberation; the Constitution Party; and the American Solidarity Party.
UPDATE: the petition for Don Blankenship for President has been removed from the Illinois State Board of Elections list, almost certainly becaues it did not have at least 250 signatures. Illinois State Board of Elections officials, for several years now, have been automatically rejecting petitions that don’t have at least 10% of the requirement. The requirement this year for president is 2,500 signatures.
Here is the list of petitioning candidates from the State Board of Elections. The list will be amended later to list the Democratic, Republican, and Libertarian candidates for president, and the Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate. They didn’t need to petition.
The Constitution Party petition for U.S. Senate, for Chad Koppie, is listed. All of the petitions are subject to challenge. The challenge must be filed no later than Monday, July 27. For U.S. House, the only minor party that submitted any petitions is the Libertarian Party, which has three candidates. The Green Party candidate listed for the Fifth District did not need to petition. There are three independents for U.S. House.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Kanye West, Leonard Peltier And Others File For The Fall Ballot In Illinois

L.P. vice-presidential candidate Spike Cohen speaking
at the Illinois State Capitol

by Bill Wheelhouse, NPR Illinois 

Rapper Kanye West was among those submitting petitions for the fall ballot Illinois on the final day for independent and third party candidates to file.   
West said he is running for president. But he has missed the deadline to file in several states. While he was on time in Illinois, filing does not guarantee a spot on the ballot. Petitions can be challenged for the number of signatures and their validity. West did not have a vice presidential candidate file with him.  
Another well known name among those filing is imprisoned political activist Leonard Peltier. He is a vice-presidential candidate on a third party ticket. Peltier is serving a life sentence for the killings of two FBI agents on an Indian reservation in 1975.
The Illinois Libertarian Party and other third parties are fielding more candidates in legislative races this year...
To read article in full, click here.

Constitution Party of Virginia Will Hold a Virtual Presidential Convention on July 25, Saturday

Ballot Access News

The Constitution Party of Virginia will hold a virtual presidential nominating convention on Saturday, July 25, at 1 p.m. Nominations for president are due by July 24, at 8 p.m. The party is not on the ballot but intends to try to collect the needed 2,500 signatures for whomever it nominates.

Kanye West Holds Rally in South Carolina on Sunday, July 19, to Attract Petition Signers

Ballot Access News

Sunday, July 19, is the last full day for independent presidential candidates to petition in South Carolina. The petition is due at noon, Monday, July 20. Kanye West is holding a rally in North Charleston on July 19, hoping to attract enough supporters to complete his petition. See this story. Attendees must have signed up in advance; social distancing will be enforced.
This technique is somewhat similar to the methods George Wallace used to get on the general election ballot in 1968, in the states with difficult requirements. In California, Wallace held many rallies to attract supporters, so that they could re-register into his American Independent Party at the meetings.

Article Describes Kanye West’s Petition Effort in South Carolina

Ballot Access News

New York magazine has this story about Kanye West’s petitioning in South Carolina.
The end of the article says Michigan requires 30,000 signatures, but that is not accurate. Michigan requires 12,000. Thanks to Political Wire for the link.
UPDATE: see this article, which says that South Carolina does accept some kinds of electronic signatures.

Maryland State Board of Elections Tallies Number of Registrants in the Working Class Party

Ballot Access News

The Working Class Party became ballot-qualified in Maryland in March 2020. Therefore, it is listed as a choice on voter registration forms in Maryland. The Maryland State Elections Board tallies registration each month. The Working Class Party, starting from zero, is slowly increasing. In April it had 20 registered members; in May it had 61; and in June it had 246.
The Working Class Party is also on the ballot in Michigan, but Michigan does not have registration by party, so the party has no registered members in Michigan.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

American Independent Party Will Nominate for President on August 15

Ballot Access News

The American Independent Party, which is only ballot-qualified in California, will hold its presidential convention on Saturday, August 15, at the home of the Sacramento County chair of the party. Some delegates will participate remotely.

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Libertarian Party Elects New National Chair

Ballot Access News

The Libertarian Party held the first half of its national convention in late May, and nominated for president and vice-president virtually. It then set a second meeting for July 10-12 in Orlando, Florida, to elect party officers. On Saturday, July 11, it elected a new national chair, Joseph Bishop-Henchman. It also re-elected its Treasurer. It will vote on Sunday for Vice-Chair, Secretary, and national committee, and judicial committee if there is time.
The July convention included virtual delegates voting electronically, but over 300 delegates chose to attend in person. The room for the meeting was exceedingly large, which made social distancing feasible.

Green Party Nominates Howie Hawkins for President on First Ballot

Ballot Access News

On July 11, the Green Party held a virtual national convention. Howie Hawkins won the presidential nomination on the first ballot. The results for the five candidates who were allowed to speak are: Hawkins 210; Dario Hunter 102; Sedinam K. C. M. Curry 11.5; Dennis Lambert 8.5; David Rolde 4.5. There were 8 votes to either have no nominee, or to abstain. There were also a sprinkling of votes for persons who had not been formally nominated: Jesse Ventura 7; Kent Mesplay 2; Lochoki 1; Bernie Sanders one-half vote. UPDATE: here is a news story.
Seven states sent no delegates. By comparison, for the 2016 presidential convention, eleven states had no delegates. For the 2012 presidential convention, seventeen states sent no delegates. In 2008, thirteen states sent no delegates. In 2004, seven states sent no delegates. So the 2020 convention had the most states represented since 2004.
The seven states that sent no delegates in 2020 are Alaska, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Vermont.

'Taking Stock Of Brock: Billionaire Blockchain Mogul Speaks About His Run For President'

Brock Pierce runs as Independent candidate for President of the United States in 2020.
Independent presidential candidate Brock Pierce

by Jason Brett,

Brock Pierce, the former child actor best known for playing the young Gordon Bombay in Mighty Ducks and The Mighty Ducks 2, has since played the role of entrepreneur, philanthropist, and a billionaire blockchain mogul. His latest role is now as a Presidential candidate where he is running as an independent in the 2020 campaign race. Pierce announced the news of his candidacy on July 4th, followed by an appearance on Fox Business where he fielded questions from Maria Bartiromo and Steve Forbes, Chair and Editor-In-Chief of Forbes Magazine.

I had the opportunity to interview Pierce for Forbes Crypto. Besides learning more about his policy positions, I asked direct and detailed questions about allegations from his past, including allegations that he drugged former employees at a company in 2000 and pressured them to have sex when they were boys, as well as how Interpol busted into a Spanish villa, when he was staying with his other two business partners, only to discover guns, machetes, and child pornography on the property. Finally, I asked about his involvement in a conference where he spoke about cryptocurrency that was arranged by Jeffrey Epstein in 2011. Pierce responded to all my questions, even the one where I asked how it felt when John Oliver roasted him on television over these allegations...

To read interview in full, click here.

Working Class Party Qualifies for Party Status in Maryland

Ballot Access News

Back on April 1, a new party qualified in Maryland called the Working Class Party. It got its signatures before the health crisis. See this story.

Howie Hawkins Campaign Believes It Has Qualified for Primary Season Matching Funds

Ballot Access News

On July 9, the Howie Hawkins campaign determined that the campaign has raised enough small donations to qualify for primary season matching funds. To get the funds, a candidate seeking the presidential nomination of any party (recognized by the FEC or not) must raise at least $5,000 from each of 20 states.
No other presidential candidate in 2020 has been trying to achieve this goal. Generally major party presidential candidates no longer seek the funds, because it comes with restrictions about how much they can spend in each state.

Kanye West Says He Hasn’t Decided Whether to Run for President This Year

Ballot Access News

This story says that Kanye West has said in an interview with Fortune magazine that he hasn’t decided yet whether to run for president this year. It also says he acknowledged that he has never voted in any public election.

Utah’s Independent American Party is seeing explosive growth, but it’s unclear what’s driving it

Utah’s Independent American Party is seeing explosive growth, but it’s unclear what’s driving it
David Else - Utah IAP State Chairman

by McKhelyn Jones, Salt Lake Tribune 

Orem - A quaint house sits in a quiet neighborhood that looks like any other family residence. Inside, however, the home acts as a meeting place for an inexplicable political phenomenon that has gone largely unnoticed.

Owned by Greg Duerden, the home is a campaign hub for Utah’s third largest political party: the Utah Independent American Party, which has seen a dramatic influx of new voters in recent years.

The party’s membership has more than quadrupled in the past four years, jumping from 10,601 at the end of 2015 to about 50,000 at last count.

The explosive growth of this ultraconservative organization- whose most famous member nationally is Nevada rancher and federal government critic Cliven Bundy -can’t be explained by campaign spending on advertising, outreach or conventions.

According to campaign finance records, the party spent $1,730 on advertising between 2016 and 2018, less than the dominant Utah Republican Party spent on just one round of printing in 2018...

To read more, click here.