Thursday, December 31, 2020
Thursday, December 24, 2020
Last month, the Maine Green Party candidate for U.S. Senate, Lisa Savage, polled 4.95%. That was the highest showing for U.S. Senate in Maine for any party, other than the Republican and Democratic Parties, in history. U.S. Senate elections have only existed in the U.S. starting in 1914.
The showing for Lisa Savage shows the power of having ranked choice voting, for boosting minor party vote showings.
Monday, December 21, 2020
Saturday, December 19, 2020
On December 7, Georgia State Representative Valencia Stovall changed her partisan affiliation from Democratic to independent. She has been in the legislature since 2012. However, she did not run for re-election, so she won’t be a member of the legislature in 2021. She lives in Morrow and represents the 74th district.
Socialist Workers Party Came Fairly Close to Polling Enough Votes in District of Columbia to Be Ballot-Qualified
The Socialist Workers Party candidate for Delegate to U.S. House from the District of Columbia, Omari Musa, polled 6,702 votes last month. If he had polled as much as 7,500 votes, the SWP would now be ballot-qualified in D.C.
Only once has the SWP been a qualified party in D.C., That was immediately after the 1976 election, when the SWP polled 11,237 votes for Dorothy Hawkinson, its nominee for City-Council-at-Large.
Musa polled almost as many votes as the party’s presidential nominee, Alyson Kennedy, received in the entire nation.. She polled 6,791 votes. She was on the ballot in Colorado, Louisiana, Minnesota, Tennessee, Vermont, and Washington. She did not file for write-in status in any state.
Musa was listed first on the D.C. ballot last month. He outpolled the Green Party nominee for Delegate to the U.S. House.
The Socialist Workers Party began running candidates for federal office in 1940, and ran its first presidential nominee in 1948. At one time or another it was a ballot-qualified party in Alabama, Arizona, Delaware, Florida, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina,Texas, and Vermont. Bernie Sanders was one of its presidential elector candidates in Vermont in 1980. It has never won a partisan office.
The election returns are almost final. The main gap are the Pennsylvania totals, and the write-in totals in several states. So far, among the presidential candidates who polled at least 20,000 votes, the totals are:
Joseph Biden, Democratic and Working Families, 81,268,867
Donald Trump, Republican and Conservative, 74,216,747
Jo Jorgensen, Libertarian, 1,865,720
Howie Hawkins, Green, 404,952
Rocky De La Fuente, Alliance, 88,234
Gloria La Riva, Socialism & Liberation, 85,616
Kanye West, independent, 70,298
Don Blankenship, Constitution, 60,148
Brock Pierce, independent, 49,700
Brian Carroll, American Solidarity, 39,188
The Wikipedia article on the election lists the vote by state for the top four candidates, but as of December 18 it does not include the Hawkins write-in vote total from Georgia.
Every state except Arkansas, Hawaii, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and South Dakota prints write-in space on November ballots for president. But the 42 states (plus D.C.) that include write-in space have very different policies on whether any write-ins are tallied.
States that have already tallied some presidential write-ins (generally only for candidates who filed for write-in status) are Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
States that usually do tally some presidential write-ins, but which have not released any write-in returns so far this year, are Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island. Pennsylvania hasn’t even released its final totals for candidates who were on the ballot.
Jurisdictions that allow declared write-in presidential candidates to file, and yet refuse to tally the write-ins, are Alaska, D.C., Nebraska, North Dakota, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming.
States that allow write-ins, but have no write-in filing procedure, and never release any write-in results for president, are Alabama, Iowa, Mississippi, New Jersey, and Oregon.
The Eighth Circuit ruled in McLain v Meier, 851 F.2d 1045 (1988) that “The State has an obligation to count all votes properly cast.” See page 1051. However, it also says that to the extent North Dakota is violating the U.S. Constitution on this point, the remedy ought to be in state court. North Dakota did count presidential write-ins for declared candidates in the past, but stopped doing so in 2008. The law didn’t change; the Secretary of State simply made that decision on his own. Nebraska is also in the Eighth Circuit. It seems plausible that any presidential candidate who filed for write-in status in either of those two states could sue. Howie Hawkins is the most prominent presidential candidate in those two states who was not on the ballot in 2020.
In 2010 the U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit, ruled that the District of Columbia Board of Elections need not count write-ins for declared presidential write-in candidates, because it would cost too much. The decision says that if anyone wants to know how many votes were cast, they are free to file a Freedom of Information request to look at all the ballots. Of course, if anyone did this, their findings would not be “official” and no reference book that tallies the votes for president would accept their findings. Both Merrick Garland and Brett Kavanaugh signed this opinion, Barr v D.C. Board of Elections. Bob Barr, the Libertarian nominee, asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse this decision, but the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the case.
The Virginia Constitution guarantees voters the right to cast a write-in vote in general elections, and the Virginia State Board of Elections formerly tallied write-ins for declared presidential candidates, but stopped doing so in 2012. A lawsuit under the State Constitution might succeed if anyone were to file it. Howie Hawkins was the most prominent presidential candidate who wasn’t on the Virginia ballot in 2020.
The Georgia Secretary of State has released vote totals for the declared write-in presidential candidates. See the state total here. Thanks to Bryce Wargin for the link.
At the November 2020 election, eleven states held gubernatorial elections. Here are the national totals for each party:
Progressive of Vermont 99,214
Independent American of Utah 25,810
Independent of Delaware 6,150
Four years ago, in the same states, the national totals were: Republican 8,842,543; Democratic 8,303,331; Libertarian 347,699; Green 69,107; Independent of Oregon 47,481; Independent American of Utah 15,912; Liberty Union 8,912; Constitution 4,041.
S. Marshall Wilson, a write-in candidate for Governor of West Virginia last month, polled 15,120 write-ins. He is West Virginia’s only independent legislator, although he did not run for re-election and will not be in the legislature in 2021.
The national vote for each party, for the regularly-scheduled U.S. Senate elections of 2020, appears to be:
Willie Wilson Party 237,699
Legal Marijuana Now 190,154
Grassroots-Legalize Cannabis 57,174
Alaskan Independence 16,806
Natural Law 13,093
Approval Voting 9,820
Independent of Delaware 7,833
Independent of Louisiana 7,811
When the same seats were up in 2014, the totals were: Republican 22,587,303; Democratic 19,607,152; Libertarian 885,400; Green 152,703; Constitution 100,596; Independence of Minnesota 47,530; Working Families 24,207; Reform 13,938; Unity 6,427; Dem-Rep 3,890.
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Tim Alberta Talks to Twenty Voters About Their Presidential Vote, Including a Don Blankenship Voter and a Kanye West Voter
Tim Alberta, chief correspondent for Politico, talked at length to twenty voters about who they voted for and why. Included in the twenty was a voter who voted for Don Blankenship, and one who voted for Kanye West. The Blankenship voter wanted to cast a vote for someone who wants to ban abortion but who is not a womanizer. The Kanye West voted that way because “he hates both parties.” See the entire piece here. Thanks to electoral-vote for the link.
Monday, December 14, 2020
Sunday, December 13, 2020
North Carolina State Board of Elections Still Tracks Green and Constitution Party Registration, Despite Their Losing Qualified Party Status
The North Carolina State Board of Elections posts registration data every week. The latest tally, December 12, still shows the Green Party and Constitution Party registrants, even though those parties went off the ballot last month. Members of those parties are asking the State Board of Elections to let them keep their registered members. In the past, North Carolina has been one of a handful of states that forcibly converts members of parties to “independent” status when the party goes off the ballot.
Libertarian Percentage for U.S. Senate from Kentucky Was the Highest for Anyone Running Outside the Major Parties Since 1914
Last month, Brad Barron, Libertarian nominee for U.S. Senate from Kentucky, polled 4.00% of the vote. That was the highest percentage for anyone running for U.S. Senate from Kentucky outside of the two major parties since 1914, when the Progressive Party nominee, Burton Vance, polled 4.15%.
With no name recognition, no money, and no media, the Jorgensen campaign helped cement the L.P.'s decade-long transformation into the third party in the United States.
by Matt Welch, Reason.com
Friday, December 11, 2020
Thursday, December 10, 2020
Monday, December 7, 2020
Saturday, December 5, 2020
We will continue to insist upon election integrity! Healthy elections begin and end with healthy campaigns. Proper voter registration, ballot access liberalization, balloting, vote counting, permanent records, ethical campaign finance reform, unbiased coverage and debate inclusion of all ballot qualified candidates are essential.
2020 saw the emergence of the Life & Liberty Party as a new political alternative. Congratulations to all who helped! Together, we will continue to promote the ideals of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness for All!
Friday, December 4, 2020
Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Errors Found in Texas Certification of Votes for President, but Secretary of State Says it is Too Late to Fix Them
The People’s Party, which is a national party in formation, has filed the notice in Maine that is required for new parties, before they can start their voter registration drive. Maine requires new and previously unqualified parties to obtain 4,000 registered members. The deadline is January 2022. It makes sense that the People’s Party would start in Maine, because Maine has ranked choice voting for congress, although still doesn’t have it in the general election for state office. See the People’s Party’s press release.
The Olean, New York Times Herald has this story about the pending lawsuit filed by the Libertarian and Green Parties over the new definition of a qualified party.
by Eric Ostermeier, Smart Politics