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Free Citizen

This writer espouses individual liberty, free markets, and limited government.

Location: Jackson, Mississippi, United States

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Washington "Top Two" Lawsuit

From the April 1 Ballot Access News hard copy:

"Washington state started using a "top two" system[1] in 2008 [following a U. S. Supreme Court ruling]. A lawsuit is currently pending in U. S. District Court over whether the system violates the associational rights of political parties as applied, and also whether the system violates the U. S. Supreme Court's ballot access precedents, and finally whether the system violates the trademark of political parties that have trademarked their names. The case is Washington State Republican Party v. Washington State and Washington State Grange.

"On March 9, Judge John C. Coughenour [coon-our] rejected an attempt by the state and the Grange to eliminate the ballot access and trademark issues from the case. ... ."

This case is facing a trial in the U. S. district court in October on the associational rights question. The next court to hear the ballot access and trademark issues will be the 9th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The fact that this litigation has not been settled could affect the voters' decision on Proposition 14, which will be on California's ballots on June 8. Prop. 14 would impose a "top two open primary" for the Golden State's congressional and state elections.


[1] All candidates, including independents, are listed on a single ballot. The top two vote-getters, regardless of party, proceed to the runoff.


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