19 September 2004
Libertarian presidential candidate Michael Badnarik will make it to the ballot in 48 states and the District of Columbia, assuming all the current petitions get through the appropriate state election boards. The two exceptions are New Hampshire and Oklahoma, where the party's petition efforts fell short; the party is challenging the Oklahoma board in court on the basis that the state's ballot-access laws are unnecessarily onerous, and Richard Winger reports in Ballot Access News that there may be a challenge in New Hampshire:
Since a major party candidate can win a statewide primary, without regard to whether he or she has substantial support in both of New Hampshire's U.S. House districts, the party may argue that the state has no interest in requiring a petitioning candidate for that same office to show substantial support in both of New Hampshire's US House districts.
New Hampshire law calls for 1500 petition signatures in each district, 3000 in all. (Oklahoma, with about three times the population, requires 51,781 statewide.) New Hampshire does allow write-ins, so if Badnarik can pull 4 percent of the vote, the party will automatically qualify for the ballot in 2008. Oklahoma does not permit write-ins.
As of this writing, Richard Winger reports that the Constitution Party, whose ticket is headed by Michael A. Paroutka, is on the ballot in 38 states and pending in three others; Ralph Nader's independent candidacy, also backed by the Reform Party, is on in 35 and pending in eight more; the Green Party's David Cobb is on in 28 states with one pending; and the Socialist Workers' Party, which has nominated Róger Calero, has qualified in fourteen states with one more under consideration. None of these candidates will appear on the Oklahoma ballot.Posted at 4:13 PM to Political Science Fiction