Last night I told you that Todd Lally and his Republican pals were challenging Libertarian candidate for U.S. Congress Ed Martin as a bona fide Libertarian. Granted, they’re challenging other candidates that cost Lally votes, but Martin’s the focus.
Here’s what Martin had to say in a release:
“At this point, no cause of action or claim is stated in the complaint,” he said. “I’m at a loss right now as to what their claim is.”
Martin is registered as a Libertarian and filed for the 3rd District race as the Libertarian candidate. The Libertarian Party of Kentucky is not recognized as a “party” but as a political group.
Martin collected more than the required 400 petition signatures to get his name on the November ballot.
A supporter of Republican candidate Todd Lally filed the suit. Recent talk of Martin pulling votes away from Lally in the media apparently spooked the GOP candidate. Martin Campaign Chair Ron Seiter said the move shows the desperation of the Lally campaign, noting that the new Republican strategy apparently consists of suing the competition off the ballot.
“The GOP of this city has sunk to a new low,” Seiter said. “For them to be wasting their time suing my candidate off the ballot is laughable. Shouldn’t they be focusing on getting more of their own people to come out to their events and actually campaigning, instead of using underhanded tactics to attack a volunteer grassroots campaign with virtually no budget?”
This from a Lally campaign that initially welcomed Martin to the race.
Ed Martin will appear in court re: the matter on Monday morning.
The Libertarian Party of Kentucky also released a statement:
“This tired motif rears its head again,” said Ken Moellman, Chairman of the LPKY. “Apparently, Republicans are so insecure about their lack of a substantive platform that they are trying to steal half of the options the voters have. Ed Martin’s pragmatic message of true fiscal responsibility, individual freedom, and prosperity offers real-world solutions to modern problems. They are obviously desperate, scared, or both.”
This cheap political ploy comes in the wake of the Republican Party in Kentucky recently taking criticism for hijacking Kentucky affiliates of the Tea Party movement for its own political ends.
“I hope Tea Partiers take note of this manipulation,” said Joshua Koch, LPKY Vice-Chair. “The GOP is using the Tea Party’s righteous indignation, and now it is trying to prevent these concerned citizens from having any real choices other than the two old parties that share equal responsibility in bringing this country to the brink of economic catastrophe.”
Unfortunately for Republicans this go round, Martin’s apparently done things the right way and is a registered member of the Libertarian Party.
It’s a shame Lally is running so scared. But it’s humorous to watch.
UPDATE – Here’s the filing (Warning: PDF Link):
9. The Secretary of State and County Clerk are charged with certifying that the submissions are “regular on its face”. When an error becomes apparently, those officials are required to notify the candidate and prohibited from allowing the candidate on the ballot.
10. The Respondent officials have failed and refused to observe the defects in the filing and the wrongfully refused to acknowledge that the filing do not satisfy the requirements for ballot access as mandated by the statute cited.
11. As a result of the breach of said duty, Respondent Secretary of State and County Clerk have or will have wrongfully caused the name of Respondent Martin to be placed on the official ballot of the 2010 Kentucky General Election for the 3rd District of the U.S. House of Representatives.
12. Respondent Martin is ineligible to be on the ballot.
13. Respondent Martin’s filing is defective in that more than 115 of the names are not proper for several reasons including that many were not registered voters in the 3rd Congressional District, numerous persons listed were not registered to vote at the addresses claimed; several of the persons listed were not the actual signature of the individual voters as claimed.
So their contention is 115 names. The Martin camp tells me there are still 470+ proper names on the petition after those are removed. The legal requirement, provided by the Kentucky Revised Statutes, is 400.