If you haven’t been to your polling place yet, I hope you still have time to have a say in your municipal elections. These odd-year elections are ballots where one vote can be loudly heard. You likely won’t have a Libertarian on your ballot, but it’s still important to go vote against raising taxes and government spending.
The Libertarians who are on the ballot today in North Carolina include:Read more
The most significant ballot access reform law in decades will become law. The General Assembly has overridden Gov. Roy Cooper's veto of SB 656 Electoral Freedom Act.
This bill lowers the barriers for political parties to gain ballot access from two percent to 0.25 percent of the vote for governor.
The Libertarian Party of North Carolina joined the North Carolina Green Party and Constitution Paty of North Carolina in hailing the veto override with this joint statement:
By Brian Irving
Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed SB 656 Electoral Freedom Act, the most significant ballot access reform bill in NC’s modern history. Once again, an establishment party has placed politics over principle. Democrats have always claimed to champion “voter rights.” Yet the governor vetoed a bill that would have given all voters the right to vote for more people for all officers because of one minor and temporary provision affecting 2018 judicial primaries.
In his veto message, the governor claims this is the “first step toward a constitutional amendment that would rig the system so that the legislature would pick everybody’s judges in every district instead of letting the people vote for the judges they want.”
This reasoning is curious because no such constitutional amendment bill exists. And even it did, a majority of North Carolina voters would have to approve it. So how would that be rigging the system? That is how a constitutional republic works.
The primary purpose of the bill is to expand voting rights. It will:
Lower the signatures a political party needs to get on the ballot from 2 percent of the vote for governor (more than 94,000 signatures) to 0.25 percent (between 11,000 and 12,000 signatures).
Allow a political party to gain ballot access status if it had a presidential candidate on the ballot in 35 states in the previous election. The Green Party, and probably the Constitution Party, should be able to qualify under this rule.
Lower the signatures an unaffiliated statewide candidate needs from 2 percent to 1.5 percent (about 71,545). The same reduction also applies to candidates for districts other than the General Assembly. The statewide reduction is not significant, and will probably generate a legal challenge. Federal courts have ruled that states cannot have a higher barrier for independent candidates than for political parties.