Steve G.

Posts Tagged ‘lawsuit’

LPNH lawsuit finally served

In George Phillies, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics, Presidential Candidates on October 6, 2008 at 1:14 pm

You can download the lawsuit for your own records here in PDF format: lpnh-lawsuit

Note that it was dated September 4th, over a month ago.  It is unknown why service of process was delayed for so long.

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LPNH lawsuit

In Chris Bennett, Courts and Justice System, George Phillies, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Convention, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Libertarian Politics 2008, Local Politics, People in the news, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Wayne Allen Root on September 15, 2008 at 2:55 pm

Click here to read the lawsuit filed Friday by LPNH, Bob Barr, Wayne Allyn Root, Brendan Kelly, and Hardy Macia:  lpnh-lawsuit1

According to George Phillies, the candidate they wish to remove from the ballot, the lawsuit lacks authority because the LPNH Executive Committee voted to merely join a suit by the LNC, yet the LNC is not listed as a plaintiff.

Barr loses West Virginia ballot access lawsuit

In Activism, Courts and Justice System, Law, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Libertarian Politics 2008, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Wayne Allen Root on September 6, 2008 at 2:22 pm

The Honorable John T. Copenhaver Jr., judge in the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia (Charleston) has ruled against LP presidential nominee Bob Barr with regard to the ballot access lawsuit.  Barr needed to collect and submit 15,118 signatures by August 1, 2008, but only submitted 13,171 signatures by that date.  The signature requirement is based upon 2% of votes cast in the 2004 general election.

Barr’s claim is that the petition requirements are unduly burdensome, and thus violated the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.  The campaign submitted 1,097 signatures on July 24th, and 1,866 signatures on July 31st (72.09% validity).  The campaign additionally submitted 10,208 signatures on August 1st, and 10,652 signatures on August 20th; however, since it was clear that the campaign had not met the requirement by August 1st, the August signatures were not submitted to county clerks for validation.

In its decision, the court ruled that the signature and date requirements are not unduly burdensome upon candidates, as multiple candidates have met the requirements, including the LP.  In 2008, it has been met by one third party for its presidential candidate (Constitution Party), and one independent presidential candidate (Ralph Nader).  Further, the court ruled that it would be unduly burdensome upon the elections office to expand the date by which signatures must be permitted, due to restrictions upon their time in light of their other duties, including the requirement that absentee ballots be mailed not less than 42 days prior to the general election, or in this case, by September 23rd.  Once the signatures are submitted, they must be validated by county clerks by comparing signatures on the petitions to signatures in their voter database, which is in itself a time-consuming process.

In ruling against Barr the court noted that, had the campaign started collecting signatures only two to three weeks earlier, the criteria would have been met, and also noted that the LP could have started collecting signatures at any time, since there are no time restrictions for ballot access petitions in that state.  Bill Redpath (LNC Chair) testified that it was a strategic decision to put off collecting signatures in West Virginia.  The court however noted that the Libertarian Party was well aware of the requirements, since the date requirement has been in existence since 1986, and the signature requirement has been existence since 1999; and that the LP simply chose not to collect signatures during a time frame which would result in a successful ballot petition process.  The court also noted that the LP started collecting signatures in a nearby state (North Carolina) in 2004, but didn’t start collecting signatures in West Virginia until 17 to 19 days prior to the deadline for petition submission.

Redpath also testified that the rural nature of the state impedes petition efforts, but the court disagreed, noting that there is no reason why petitioners cannot simply gather signatures in the 11 most populous counties, each of which has a major city, and which together comprise 50% of the state’s total population of 1.8 million.

The Court additionally noted that the pool of potential petition signers is unlimited in West Virginia, as anyone registered to vote can sign a petition, petitions can be circulated at any time, voters can sign as many petitions as they wish, and voters are not bound to the candidate whose petition they have signed.  Also, the court noted that the petition process itself is not unduly complicated, in that petitioners need not be West Virginia residents, and there is no notarization requirement.  Multiple third-party and independent candidates have met the requirements in 2000, 2004, and 2008; and the LP met the requirement in the last general election in 2004.

The court ruled that the failure of Barr/Root to be placed on the ballot for November was caused by their own lack of reasonable diligence, and not by the West Virginia state petition requirements.

The LP paid nothing for WV ballot access, as the entire cost was borne by the Barr campaign according to the Court’s decision.  It is unknown whether the LP paid for the failed lawsuit.

The 34-page decision has been uploaded to LFV, and readers are encouraged to read the decision for themselves as it sets forth quite clearly what went wrong in West Virginia.  The decision, in PDF format, can be seen and downloaded here: decision-in-barr-v-ireland-wv-ballot-access

Breaking News: LNC NH lawsuit to be filed in the morning

In Courts and Justice System, George Phillies, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Libertarian Politics 2008, Politics, Presidential Candidates on August 28, 2008 at 11:39 pm

According to an excellent source, the New Hampshire ballot lawsuit has been authorized by Libertarian National Committee Chair Bill Redpath, and will be filed in the morning (Friday 8/29).

As previously discussed, the lawsuit is expected to seek the removal of George Phillies from the ballot, and the placement of Bob Barr on the ballot. New Hampshire ballot law does not allow for substitution, and George Phillies is currently the LPNH presidential nominee.

Professor Phillies is already ballot-qualified, according to the New Hampshire Secretary of State. However, Professor Phillies says he will not step down, because he feels he has an ethical obligation to those who signed the petitions placing him on the ballot.

LFV will update as more information becomes available.

Video: Bob Barr discusses GOP lawsuit to remove him from Pennsylvania ballot

In Courts and Justice System, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Media, People in the news, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Republican on August 25, 2008 at 2:58 pm

Barr misses Maine deadline

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics on August 12, 2008 at 11:17 am

Also posted at Independent Political Report

Hot on the heels of the failure in West Virginia (additional discussion at Ballot Access News and Last Free Voice), Ballot Access News reports:

On the deadline date of August 8, Bob Barr submitted a total of 3,200 signatures to various town and city clerks in Maine. State law requires 4,000 valid signatures to get on the ballot.

Over the weekend, petitioners obtained another 2,000 signatures, which they had hoped to turn in to the clerks on Monday. The signatures are not due at the Secretary of State’s office until Aug. 15. If the local clerks choose to take the late signatures, Barr could still qualify, since the additional signatures would potentially give him 5,200 total.

If the officials fail to accept and certify the late signatures, LP officials plan to go to court.

Maine joins Oklahoma, Massachusetts and West Virginia among states which the Barr campaign is suing to be on the ballot. The Barr campaign also raced to the deadline in Connecticut, as well as in New Hampshire, where the LP failed to qualify in 2004 and 2006 and where George Phillies will be on the ballot either alongside or instead of Bob Barr as a Libertarian Presidential candidate. The results of the last-minute pushes in Connecticut and New Hampshire are forthcoming.

Another possible concern for the campaign is the District of Columbia, which pre-nomination LP ballot access plans had written off (along with West Virginia and Oklahoma). According to the chart at Ballot Access News, with a week left to go, DC reports only 300 signatures gathered for Barr. Although the District requires only 3,883 valid signatures, petitioning in the district is made more difficult than in other places because non-DC residents make up a substantial portion of the DC workforce and nightlife, and because of the high prevalence of tourists, people who are disqualified (or believe they are disqualified) from voting by reason of a criminal record, and those who are not (or believe they are not) allowed to sign petitions because of their government job.

The LP has been on the ballot in 48 states or more plus DC in every election since 1992.

West Virginia Libertarian petition reportedly fails

In Green Party, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics on August 1, 2008 at 2:28 am

According to a field report by one of the Libertarian petitioners on the ground in West Virginia, as of tonight’s final turn-in of signatures by petitioners to the campaign, the LP gathered only around 12,000 raw signatures, falling short of the 15,118 required by state law. While additional signatures would be required to survive a challenge, the bare minimum required by law would have been enough if there was no challenge.

Richard Winger reports in Ballot Access News, “No other state is like Illinois, where even a petition with a number of signatures below the legal minimum is sufficient if no one challenges”.

If this field report is accurate, it would mean that Bob Barr can be on the ballot in at most 48 states, unless he wins his lawsuit in Oklahoma.

The Nader and Constitution Party petitions appear to have enough signatures, and the Green Party is on the ballot through its affiliate, the Mountain Party.

In another post at BAN, Richard Winger writes:

West Virginia and North Carolina are tied for having the nation’s second-highest presidential petition requirements (each requires a petition of 2% of the last vote in a presidential election year). Only Oklahoma is worse, at 3% of the last presidential vote.

Both the Libertarian and Constitution Parties are making a massive effort to finish their West Virginia petitions, which are due August 1. This newspaper story about the Libertarian petition says 40 to 50 circulators are working in the state. The story doesn’t feature the Constitution Party, but it also has many circulators in the state this week.

West Virginia was one of 4 states in which Ron Paul didn’t get on the ballot in 1988, when he was the Libertarian nominee. The Constitution Party has never been on the West Virginia ballot for president, but the party has more organizational strength now than it has ever had. In 2000, its presidential nominee, Howard Phillips, was only credited with 23 write-ins in West Virginia, but its 2004 presidential candidate, Michael Peroutka, was credited with 82 write-ins in West Virginia.

Nader did his West Virginia 2008 petition earlier in the year, collecting 30,000 signatures, double the requirement. The Green Party’s affiliate in West Virginia, the Mountain Party, has been ballot-qualified starting in 2000.

Bob Barr’s “emotional distress”

In Congress, Constitutional Rights, Courts and Justice System, Crazy Claims, Democrats, First Amendment, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Libertarian Politics 2008, Lies and the lying liars who tell them, Media, People in the news, Personal Responsibility, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Republican, US Government on May 7, 2008 at 1:43 am

In 2002, Salon published an article detailing how Bob Barr filed a $30 million lawsuit against Bill Clinton,Bob Barr Larry Flynt, and James Carville, claiming “emotional distress”, on the same day he was championing a bill that would cap damage awards for pain and suffering (for everybody else, naturally) at $250,000.

As I’m sure you’ve already figured out, he didn’t win; the lawsuit was dismissed on the basis that he failed to state a claim upon which relief could be granted; he appealed the dismissal, and lost again. The dismissal on appeal was even more embarrassing, since the court determined that he never even claimed the disparaging information to be false, or stated with reckless disregard for the truth, or with knowing disregard for its falsity.

Think about this for a minute. He was suing a man he had impeached and two alleged (but extremely unlikely) conspirators, unsuccessfully mind you, for causing him emotional distress; yet he still never once claimed that the dirt they dug up on him (and which Flynt eventually published) was even false.

I don’t know about you, but I find even the idea of that lawsuit incredibly amusing. Can you say “frivolous”? Or maybe the word I’m looking for is “paranoid”. Either way, the word “disturbing” also comes to mind, given that an appellate court ruled that he had sued three people for $30 million, when all they had really done was exercise their First Amendment right to free speech.

By the way ….. it’s only 17 days until the convention, and Bob Barr still has not announced his intentions, and still is hiding behind his Exploratory Committee rather than subjecting himself to voter questions and scrutiny like the other candidates have already done. Gee, I wonder why. LOL

Here’s an excerpt from the Salon article:

Jun 14, 2002 | When the news finally broke — because porn magnate Larry Flynt sent out his own press release — that Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., had filed a lawsuit in March against Bill Clinton, pundit James Carville and Flynt for $30 million, claiming “loss of reputation and emotional distress,” the timing couldn’t have been much more awkward for Barr. That very day, he was championing a bill that would cap damage awards for “pain and suffering” at $250,000.

This week, at a hearing of the House Judiciary Commercial and Administrative Law Subcommittee, which he chairs, Barr heaped praise on a bill that would limit so-called non-economic medical damages to $250,000, saying “a national liability insurance crisis is ravaging the nation’s healthcare system.”

So how can someone who wants to limit awards for pain and suffering sue the former president and others for a whopping $30 million in emotional distress?

The depths of the former House impeachment manager’s disdain for the former president should not be underestimated. Of all the House managers, Barr was perhaps the most gung-ho in his desire to get Clinton. Back in November 1997, before the world had ever heard of Monica Lewinsky, Barr tried to bring impeachment charges against Clinton, alleging violations of campaign finance laws.

Now, Barr has quietly filed a suit against Clinton, Carville and Flynt for “participating in a common scheme and unlawful on-going conspiracy to attempt to intimidate, impede and/or retaliate against [Barr]” for his role as an impeachment manager in 1999.

Behold: Bob Barr’s vast left-wing conspiracy.

The suit comes, however, as Barr has other things to worry about. Redistricting has placed him in a tough primary fight against Rep. John Linder, R-Ga. When asked on Thursday about Barr’s suit, Linder spokesman Bo Harmon offered a jab veiled in a no-comment. “A sitting congressman suing a former president for $30 million raises all sorts of serious questions,” Harmon said. “Until we know more about Congressman Barr’s state of mind on this, we’re going to refrain from commenting.”

Barr’s case is yet another bizarre coda to the impeachment saga. Among the documents submitted in the suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, was a section of The Flynt Report, the 1999 document by the Hustler publisher that shone a spotlight on the private lives of the House impeachment managers and other moralizing Republicans. The report calls Barr “a twice-divorced family values cheerleader … who condoned an abortion, committed adultery and failed to tell the truth under oath” in a 1986 deposition.

Flynt’s report was one of the blows struck in a tit-for-tat mud-wrestling match between investigators in the Office of the Independent Counsel and their congressional allies and Democratic attack dogs during the halcyon days of the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Democrats pointed to stories like the ones contained in the report and to Henry Hyde’s extramarital affair to label Republican impeachment managers as hypocrites.

Barr has long talked of a conspiracy behind the attacks on him. At the time the Flynt Report was published, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Barr if the White House was behind the smear campaign. “Most people can’t even deny that with a straight face,” Barr told Blitzer.

The suit is not the first time Barr has tried to sue Clinton outside the confines of Congress. The new civil suit is a reprise of a criminal case Barr brought in 1999 against the Executive Office of the President and the Justice Department, claiming the White House was keeping a dossier on Barr and that the congressman “was subject to attacks and threats of attack by persons in the media, including Larry Flynt, James Carville, [investigative journalist] Dan Moldea and others.”

The new complaint charges that the White House kept “files on [Barr] and routinely disseminated the contents of those files to defendants Carville and Flynt and others, including members of the media, in an effort to intimidate and impede” Barr’s investigation of Clinton. The suit also alleges that the White House kept an enemies list that included all 13 House impeachment managers; Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind.; Sen. Tim Hutchinson, R-Ark.; Newsweek reporter Michael Isikoff; and Judicial Watch’s Larry Klayman, who is serving as Barr’s attorney in the case.

The suit, however, includes no evidence of such collusion.

Read the rest of this article here.

LP/Green ballot access lawsuit in NC goes to trial

In Activism, Big Brother, Courts and Justice System, Democrats, Green Party, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Local Politics, Media, Politics, Republican on May 6, 2008 at 3:25 am
By JOEDY McCREARY
Associated Press Writer
Monday, May. 5, 2008 6:44 pm

RALEIGH (AP)- A Libertarian candidate for governor testified Monday that state law makes it “effectively impossible” to conduct a grassroots campaign in North Carolina.

Mike Munger, a Duke University professor, testified during a civil trial that could determine whether state laws are too stringent and unfairly limit the ability of third parties to get on the ballot.

The Libertarian and Green parties filed a lawsuit that claims state laws that define a political party are onerous and violate party members’ rights to free speech and association. The law also affects how party candidates can be included on ballots.

State attorneys defend the law, saying legislators approved rules that maintain the integrity of elections by requiring a political party to demonstrate it has adequate support from voters.

Under the law, a party must collect nearly 70,000 voter signatures to receive official party status. Party leaders said that’s one of the highest thresholds in the country. If the party’s candidate doesn’t get 2 percent of the vote for president or governor, the party must start over. The requirement had been 10 percent until the rules were changed in 2006.

The Libertarian Party has surpassed the signature requirement for all but one presidential election since 1976, state attorneys argued in court filings. The Green Party has never met the petition standard.

Special Deputy Attorney General Karen Long cross-examined Munger, who acknowledged only four Libertarian candidates have been chosen for the state House, which has 120 seats, and three Libertarians ran for Senate, which has 50 seats, for this year’s election. The party would be able to offer more candidates if it qualifies for the ballot by this year’s petition deadline.

Munger also admitted that since 1992, Libertarian candidates had enough signatures to get on the ballot but did not win any state elections. A party spokesman said later Monday the party has won nonpartisan elections.

But the lawsuit, filed in September 2005, said the Libertarian Party has paid more than $100,000 to hire solicitors to collect signatures along with volunteers for a successful petition. The process and money drain favors the state Republican and Democratic parties.

The signature deadline for this year’s general election is June 2.