January 13, 2012

BREAKING: Judge rules “no” on lawsuit to expand VA primary ballots

It’s either Romney or Paul for you, Virginia. Jon Moseley:

UNCONSTITUTIONAL” but TOO LATE to do anything about it, was the ruling of United States District Court Judge John A. Gibney on January 10, 2012, in the Federal lawsuit filed by Governor Rick Perry. Perry sued in late December to appear on Virginia’s ballot, after only Mitt Romney and Ron Paul qualified for the Republican primary. Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman “intervened” and joined the lawsuit.

Judge Gibney ruled that RIck Perry’s lawsuit is absolutely correct: Virginia’s restrictions on who may circulate ballot access petitions is UNCONSTITUTIONAL in light of prior U.S. Supreme Court precedent — see below.

However, the Judge ruled that he could not provide a “remedy’ to the other candidates, because they did not in fact submit 10,000 ballot petition signatures and it is simply too late in the process to be fixed.

Explained Virginia attorney Jonathon Moseley: “Had a candidate actually collected ballot petitions using out-of-state circulators, for example, and wanted those otherwise ineligible petitions to be counted, Judge Gibney clearly would have ordered those petitions to be counted. Judge Gibney would have stricken the requirement that circulators be Virginia residents. But now there simply isn’t time for candidates to run out and collect 10,000 ballot petitions, even if they use out of state circulators, free of the restriction that RIck Perry challenged.”

Judge Gibney’s final order can be downloaded at:


Feeling disenfranchised, those of you in VA who wanted to cast your vote for some other candidate? Sorry, them’s the (procedural) breaks. Besides, this is 21st century America. And in 21st century America our established parties like their processes streamlined.

Trust them. It’s for your own good.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 3:49pm

Comments (30)

  1. Perry turned in almost 15,000 signatures, no? 10,000 was the actual number required. What process did the VA GOP go through to eliminate almost 5000 signatures?

  2. The antidisestablishmentarians strike again!

  3. This is great news for the Republican Party.

    In Virginia we have a strait up contest, Romney versus “Not Romney”.

    A simple choice and an informative data point for the convention.

  4. Republican Party benefits? That’s hard to gauge, when Paul, a non-Republican, would end up the not-Romney-apparent. ‘Course, I don’t think Romney would lose Va. to Paul, despite that I’ve not lived there for a couple of decades now.

  5. in va its squish vs flake

  6. More breaking:

    A right-to-work organization is taking the White House to court over the president’s controversial decision to install three new members on the National Board Relations board without Senate approval.

    The legal challenge came after the three new members approved a legal response in an existing lawsuit. The plaintiffs asked the judge on Friday to rule that their participation is invalid because President Barack Obama did not have the authority to appoint them.

  7. I know who this helps

  8. JD, about the signature verification process. That plus the decision a few weeks before the deadline to not examine petitions by candidates who got more than 15,000 but to examine those who had more than 10,000 but less than 15,000.

  9. The sodium chloride is wise in its wizenedness. The Republican Party benefits is the choice is between a liberal Republican and and Libertarian crank.

    Conservatives and Classical Liberals hoping to save the GOP from itself? Not so much.

  10. Yes Virginia, you can save the Republic: Vote Paul. I guess if the VA vote was soon and Paul actually beat Romney that might, might derail the inevitablity/electability train, but it’s on Super Tuesday. Romney will have upwards of 50 or 75 delegates of 1244 by then – hard to stop that juggernaut.

  11. There will be 345 delegates awarded before Super Tuesday. Super Tuesday will award 473 or 502 if you count the Wyoming caucuses which run from 3/6 to 3/10.

    I would love for Romney to have only 50 to 75 by then.

  12. Oh, and it’s 1144.

  13. Perry turned in almost 15,000 signatures, no? 10,000 was the actual number required. What process did the VA GOP go through to eliminate almost 5000 signatures?

    There has to be 400 from every district. Also, Perry turned in just shy of 12K, and enough of them were invalid to drive him under 10K.

    I think the judge got it right here. It’s the VA legislature that blew it. If you don’t like the options on the ballot, you can always write your guy/gal in.

  14. “If you don’t like the options on the ballot, you can always write your guy/gal in.”

    no you can’t

    Virginia state law specifically prohibits voters from writing in candidates not on the ballot in primary elections.


  15. Virginia primaries do not allow write-in votes. Write-in and it’s a spoiled ballot.

  16. Pablo did you read my link as to how they checked the petitions? It was a clusterfuck that makes the 2000 FL hanging chads look scientific.

  17. I need a ruling on this:


    Is Froma Harrop in on the joke or not? She has to be, right?

  18. Wow, that is a clusterfuck. I wonder what the status of Mosley’s suit is. That seems to have a better chance of prevailing.

  19. It’s almost like this was preordained. No, it was preordained.

  20. Uncle Ron is a nutjob but I would like to vote in the primary. Not Romney for the win!

  21. Froma is an idiot and always has been.

  22. Why don’t I have more chocolate in the house?

  23. Dicentra – that was epic funny

  24. A 1 in 6 burn rate seems remarkably high, Geoffb, no? But after reading your link, much is explained.

  25. Probably the smart move for VA Republicans is to boycott the primary. If I was advising one of the campaigns that’s been excluded from the ballot, that’s what I’d be telling them to tell their supporters in VA.

  26. What’s most important, we can all agree surely, is to agree to submit to the downfall. Dead Uncle Sam all around!

    Sure sure, we knew why it happened and how, and we tried, each and every one of us, so ever mightily, to predict and prevent it. And we even mastered every lesson Dale Carnegie taught, giving us the power to be heard (and seen as we would hope after paying bunches of people bundles of money to do just that).

    And we failed, because American failed us.

    Like Steyn says.

    Like PW preaches.

    So I will, with reason, choose to fill up righteously my cup until, when overflowing, I damn the lack of bigger cups not built for me.

  27. Well it might be over by Super Tuesday given how things are set up. Which sucks.

    For a palette cleanser, check this out: http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/2012/01/comedy-gold-click-on-header-below.html

  28. Sorry about those sloppy numbers geoffb you’re right on both counts.

  29. Pingback: Dr. Weevil » What Can a Virginian Do?

  30. I guess I don’t really see how the manner in which a party chooses to select its candidate for a general election falls under the purview of the local, state, or federal government.

    The election itself? Different beast.