Green Party Ballot Access Victory in Arizona
Barnes Law and the Arizona Green Party fought back and won after Secretary of State Michele Reagan’s office said in June that the party’s electors, presidential candidate, and vice presidential candidate would not appear on the November 8 general election ballot. Arizona law requires recognized political parties to choose 11 electors no later than 90 days ahead of the primary. The Green Party missed this June 1 deadline after the Secretary, departing from years of customary notifications, gave the Green Party virtually no notice that elector names were due. Missing the deadline meant that the Green Party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Dr. Jill Stein, would not appear on the ballot in November absent a court order, according to officials.
The Green Party recently filed a federal lawsuit seeking such a court order. A spokesperson for the Secretary of State said that she chose not to fight the lawsuit and directed the Arizona attorney general’s office to agree to Green Party ballot access despite the June 1 deadline. The spokesperson said that the Secretary of State’s office did not disagree with the Green Party but could not under existing law accept the electors’ names after the deadline. As a result, the Green Party and the Secretary of State filed a stipulation with the court and mutually requested a court order that would place the Green Party’s electors, presidential candidate, and vice presidential candidate on the November 8 general election ballot. The court has not yet signed the order.
Indeed, the Secretary of State’s office even said that the June 1 deadline is too early, falling months before the general election ballot is even printed. The office plans to ask Arizona lawmakers to alter the deadline for coming years.
— By Julia Damron, Esq., Barnes Law
Julia Damron is an associate attorney with Barnes Law, licensed to practice law in California.
The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the firm, its clients, or any of its or their respective affiliates. This article is for general information purposes and is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal advice.
Fischer, Howard, “Green Party makes it on to Arizona's presidential ballot”, Tucson.com, http://tucson.com/news/state-and-regional/green-party-makes-it-on-to-arizona-s-presidential-ballot/article_2d06952c-c08c-5b19-84be-9b75156bf269.html, last updated July 14, 2016.
Fischer, Howard, “Arizonans Could Vote Green In November After All”, KJZZ.org, July 14, 2016, http://kjzz.org/content/334709/arizonans-could-vote-green-november-after-all.