South Carolina Green Party et al v. South Carolina State Election Commission et al
Update (August 29, 2008):The Mchael E. Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University has a very complete upload of materials submitted for this case on both sides here: http://moritzlaw.osu.edu/electionlaw/litigation/scgreenpartyv.scsec.php
Ballot Access News is reporting that the SC Democratic Party is seeking to intervene in the case of South Carolina Green Party et al, v. South Carolina State Election Commission et al. It is likely that judge Joseph F Anderson, Jr. will permit the SCDP to become party to the suit. Their standing could be based on the loyalty oath that Platt was required to sign before seeking the Democratic nomination.
The issue is whether someone who has already been nominated by a minor party, and who later runs in a major party primary and loses that primary, should be kept off the general election ballot entirely. South Carolina permits fusion. Although the U.S. Supreme Court upheld “sore loser” laws in 1974, Platt argues he isn’t a “sore loser”. He is an “ambitious winner”, i.e., someone who wins one party’s nomination and then tries for another party’s nomination.
Platt was already a party nominee when he entered the Democratic primary. Someone who wins one party primary then seeks electoral fusion with another party is an “ambitious winner.”
Someone who has ben rejected by one party before seeking the nomination of another, then might be a sore loser. The facts in this case are different.
There has been steady traffic to my posts here about Eugene Platt. The case has received some national coverage via Associated Press. I suppose it has gained some traction due to the similarities with the Democratic strategy of sinking progressive challengers, as in Pennsylvania in 2004 and 2006 and also Oregon. Of course the local media in Charleston have been reporting the story. Mr. Platt has been an elected official in Charleston County for more than ten years and nearly defeated the incumbent Republican running for this same State House seat in 2006.
The case could be decided anytime in time for Platt to be included on the ballot. The court has not yet made any of this paperwork available online. The ACLU’s filing is available on its website, here.
Plaintiffs: South Carolina Green Party, Eugene Platt and Robert Dunham
Defendants: South Carolina State Election Commission, John H Hudgens, Cynthia M Bensch, Tracey C Green, Pamella B Pinson and Thomas Waring
Case Number: 3:2008cv02790
Filed: August 7, 2008
Court: South Carolina District Court
Office: Columbia Office
Presiding Judge: Honorable Joseph F Anderson Jr
Nature of Suit: Civil Rights – Voting
Cause: 42:1983 Civil Rights Act
Jurisdiction: Federal Question
Jury Demanded By: None
Posted on August 26, 2008, in Eugene Platt, Green Party, Politics, South Carolina and tagged ACLU, ballot access, Eugene Platt, Green Party of South Carolina, South Carolina, South Carolina District Court, South Carolina Green Party et al, v. South Carolina State Election Commission et al.. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.