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Election Law @ Moritz Home Page

Election Law @ Moritz

Election Law @ Moritz


Litigation

Libertarian Party of Ohio v. Brunner

Case Information

Date Filed: June 6, 2008
State: Ohio
Issue: Ballot Access
Courts that Heard this Case: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio (Case 2:08-cv-00555)

Issue:

Whether the Secretary of State's refusal to give the Libertarian Party of Ohio access to the November 2008 general election ballot deprives "plaintiffs of speech, voting and associational rights secured by the First and Fourteenth amendments to the Constitution of the United States."

Status:

Complaint filed 6/6/08.  Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed on 6/16/08 and granted on 7/17/08.  Answer filed on 8/7/08.

Case Summary and Consolidation

Moore v. Brunner (2:08-cv-00819) (Socialist Party USA), Libertarian Party of Ohio v. Brunner (2:08-cv-00555) and McKinney v. Brunner (2:08-cv-00819) (Green Party of the United States) involve minor political party challenges to the Ohio Secretary of State's Directive 2007-09. This Directive established procedures for the placement of minor party candidates on the state election ballot.

On 7/25/08, the Secretary of State filed a motion to consolidate Moore with Libertarian Party, due to the similarity of the issues in the case and for the purposes of judicial economy and legal consistency. The cases were ordered to be consolidated by the Court on 8/5/08. On 8/21/08, the Court granted plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction, and ordered that the Socialist Party Candidate be placed on the general election ballot in November. On 8/29/08, the Secretary of State filed a motion to consolidate Libertarian Party and McKinney. This motion was granted on 9/2/08.

The documents listed below include the case consolidation orders and the Court's 8/21/08 order granting the plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction. For earlier documents, please check the individual case pages linked above.

District Court Documents

Commentary

Edward B. Foley

The Electoral Fix We Really Need

Edward B. Foley

The Electoral College winner should be the majority choice in each state that counts towards that Electoral College victory.

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In the News

Edward B. Foley

Gerrymandering Is Headed Back to the Supreme Court

Professor Edward Foley was requoted in Mother Jones about a gerrymandering case in Wisconsin on its way to the Supreme Court. Other legal actions on partisan gerrymandering in Maryland and in North Carolina may be bound for the Supreme Court as well.

While previous Supreme Court cases have noted that partisan gerrymanders are “incompatible with democratic principles,” The New York Times originally reported, the court has never officially struck a case down. While it remains unseen how the Supreme Court will rule in the upcoming cases, a 2004 ruling from a previous gerrymandering case could play a pivotal role in how the court stands in the future. 

“The ordered working of our Republic, and of the democratic process, depends on a sense of decorum and restraint in all branches of government, and in the citizenry itself,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote in 2004. Kennedy’s statement is “the most important line” in the decision, Foley told The New York Times, adding,  “He’s going to look at what’s going on in North Carolina as the complete absence of that. I think that helps the plaintiffs in any of these cases.”


 

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Info & Analysis

U.S. Supreme Court Affirms District Court: NC Redistricting Unconstitutional

In a 5-3 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the District Court, finding that North Carolina\'s Congressional redistricting plan violated the U.S. Constitution. The Court determined that racial considerations unlawfully predominated the designing of the contested districts. The case is Cooper v. Harris.

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