For Immediate Release
October 12, 2012
PA Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Libertarians and Common Sense
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that each nominating petition signature line does not have to include the year as part of the date in order to be considered valid when “Revised January, 2012” is printed at the bottom of each form. An August Commonwealth Court ruling sided with Republicans, disqualifying 1,459 signatures on Libertarian petitions where the year was missing. By reversing the lower court, the Supreme Court struck a blow for common sense and increased the safety margin by which Libertarians exceeded the 20,601 signatures needed to get on the November ballot.
Libertarian presidential candidate and former Governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson, was added to the ballot on August 1, along with the entire slate of Libertarian Party candidates. Apparently fearing that Johnson would draw more Republican than Democrat votes, Republicans challenged the Libertarians, claiming that many of their signatures were invalid. Libertarians were dragged through a grueling and costly 9-week signature verification process that culminated Wednesday when Commonwealth Court Senior Judge Colins ruled that Libertarians had more than enough signatures and could remain on the ballot regardless of how the Supreme Court ruled on two appealed issues.
The following Libertarian candidates will remain ON the November 6 ballot:
|• President||Governor Gary Johnson|
|• Vice President||Judge James Gray|
|• U.S. Senate||Rayburn Douglas Smith|
|• PA Attorney General||Marakay J. Rogers|
|• PA Auditor General||Betsy Summers|
|• PA Treasurer||Patricia M. Fryman|
“The Supreme Court’s ruling is significant because it increases the valid signature total to the point where any Republican appeal of Judge Colins’ decision would appear to be doomed,” Libertarian attorney Paul A. Rossi said this morning. Yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling, when combined with another Commonwealth Court decision in Libertarians’ favor that the Supreme Court allowed to stand, means that the valid signature total is now 24,252 versus 20,601 required.
John Karr, Chair of the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania Elections Committee, observed, “The entire process was heavily biased in favor of the Republicans. We beat them at their own game. Their attorneys are whining that they didn’t have enough time. Nine weeks is not enough time? Voters desperately need meaningful choices on the ballot. If Republicans fear healthy competition, they should nominate better candidates instead of attempting to deny voters those choices.”
The Libertarian Party is the party of principle. That principle is simply, “Live and let live.” With over a quarter million Americans registered Libertarian, it is the largest and best alternative for those who want smaller government and more freedom. Visit www.LP.org and www.LPPA.org for more information.
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