4 August 2004
And no write-ins, either
D. Frank Robinson, who's running as a Libertarian for the 5th Congressional District seat currently held by Ernest Istook, was last mentioned here in connection with his plan for greatly expanding the size of the House of Representatives. He posted a comment to that item, which I reprint here:
As of this date [08/03/2004], it appears more likely that Oklahoma may be the only state without any Libertarian candidates on the ballot this year. Our case is still pending, but unless we get a favorable decision by mid-September, it looks like a fugitaboutit. Well, just push on to 2006. Hip deep in the big muddy in Oklahoma and the big fools say to circulate a petition!
This is, of course, because Oklahoma, alone among the fifty, expects a party to get signatures from five percent of the state's registered voters, more than 36,000 signatures in all, to be granted access to the statewide ballot, effectively locking the two major parties into permanent primacy. By contrast, Texas, six times bigger, demands only 45,540. (This enormous number of signatures extends to initiative petitions as well; to get a State Question that amends the Constitution on the ballot requires 15 percent of the number of votes cast in the most recent gubernatorial election [link requires Adobe Reader], which for November 2004 would be over 155,000 signatures.)
I've complained about this sort of thing before, and I suppose at some point I'll be complaining about it again. We should be encouraging political organizations, not trying to strangle them in their cribs.