Monthly Archives: April 2009

Justice David Souter to Retire

On April 30, news media announced that U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter plans to leave the Court, although he will remain for the current term, and until a replacement has been chosen. Souter has never seemed very interested in the problems of minor parties or independent candidates. Although he wrote the ballot access decision […]

Federal Court Holds 3 Hour Hearing on Rhode Island Ballot Access for New Parties

On April 30, a U.S. District Court in Rhode Island held a hearing in Block v Mollis, no. 09-47. The case challenges certain aspects of Rhode Island’s law on how a group can become a qualified party by petition. Rhode Island makes it illegal for such a petition to be circulated in odd years, and […]

U.S. District Court Upholds Oklahoma's 3% Independent Presidential Petition

On April 30, U.S. District Court Judge David Russell upheld Oklahoma’s procedure for independent presidential candidates. Barr v Ziriax, civ-08-730-R. The decision is only eight pages long. The decision does not try to rebut either of the plaintiff’s two most powerful arguments. Oklahoma required 43,913 signatures for an independent presidential candidate in 2008, but didn’t […]

British Columbia Voters Vote on Single Transferable Vote on May 12

On May 12, British Columbia voters will vote on whether to use Single Transferable Voting for provincial parliamentary elections. This article, from an Alberta newspaper, describes the proposal and focuses on how passage in British Columbia might advance the idea in Alberta.

Possible Referendum in Washington State on National Popular Vote Plan

On April 29, David John Anderson of Washington state filed initial paperwork to begin a Referendum petition, to ask the voters if they wish to repeal the National Popular Vote Plan law in that state. He needs 120,577 signatures by July 25, 2009. If his petition succeeds, the voters would vote on the law on […]

Panel at Harvard Discusses National Popular Vote Plan

The April 30 edition of the Harvard Law Record has this description of a panel on the National Popular Vote Plan, held on April 27. Both panelists, Law Professor Akhil Amar, and New Yorker editor Hendrick Hertzberg, support the plan, so in no sense was the panel a debate.

Major Polls Show 4% or 5% of Americans Choose "Other" When Asked About Partisan Affiliation

For decades, pollsters have been asking U.S. residents if they consider themselves to be Democrats, Republicans, or independents. Recently, however, two of the biggest polls have added “other” to those choices. An NBC News/WSJ Survey released April 29 finds that 4% of respondents choose the “Other” category. A Washington Post/ABC Poll released April 21 found […]