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Nader campaign goes to court over Oregon ballot access

"It's total bad faith," said Greg Kafoury, the Portland attorney who is leading the Nader campaign in Oregon. He promised a lawsuit by today seeking to force Bradbury to accept the signatures.
Statesman Journal
September 3, 2004
 http://news.statesmanjournal.com/article.cfm?i=86122


Nader supporters won't quit efforts

His last chance to make state ballot might be in court

WILLIAM MCCALL
The Associated Press

PORTLAND Ralph Nader supporters said Thursday that they won't abandon their efforts to put the independent candidate on the presidential ballot in Oregon and joined Republicans in accusing Democrats of trying to sabotage the Nader campaign.

The last chance for Nader in Oregon, however, might be going to a state court to argue a lawsuit that already has found little support in federal court.

Secretary of State Bill Bradbury, a Democrat, ruled Wednesday that Nader supporters didn't turn in enough valid signatures because of flaws on petition sheets to add Nader to the state ballot.

Bradbury's decision has further inflamed a major political brawl involving Nader supporters, Democrats and Republicans as the election draws near.

"It's total bad faith," said Greg Kafoury, the Portland attorney who is leading the Nader campaign in Oregon.

He promised a lawsuit by today seeking to force Bradbury to accept the signatures.

Oregon Democratic Party Chairman Jim Edmunson said that any lawsuit filed in state court at this point would be frivolous after a federal judge ruled that Bradbury had authority to decide the validity of signatures in an earlier lawsuit filed by Nader supporters.

The First Amendment protects access to the ballot by a candidate or an initiative petition, said Charles Hinkle, a Portland attorney and constitutional-law expert.

"There have been a number of cases over the years in which the U.S. Supreme Court and other courts have struck down ballot access conditions the courts have found to be too restrictive," Hinkle said.

The legal question is whether any restrictions a state sets are a serious burden to candidates or petition campaigns. Severe restrictions such as literacy tests once used in Southern states to bar black voters were struck down. Lesser restrictions, such as a Colorado law requiring petition circulators to be state residents, also have been rejected by courts.

If Kafoury follows through as expected, with a lawsuit challenging Bradbury on First Amendment grounds, a judge may have to decide whether the disputed signatures should be counted.

Kevin Mannix, the Oregon Republican Party chairman, said Nader supporters could be angered by Bradbury and decide to add Nader's name to the ballot as a write-in candidate on Election Day.

homepage: homepage: http://naderoregon.org

Again the Press 03.Sep.2004 22:44

Travis

Subtle but still disingenuous is the actions of our fair and free press.

I ask you this question, " WHY THE HELL ARE THEY ASKING MANIX ANYTHING CONCERNING THIS RACE?!"

It is disgusting that this reporter and others like him would interview a non-entity as far as this issue is concerned. It only serves to smear our campaign further by linking a Republican who has nothing at stake to the contentions of the real players in this battle.

Repubs and Dems agree - silence all true opposition to Bush/Kerry agenda 04.Sep.2004 09:23

IMPEACH BUSH NOW!

As I've posted elsewhere, Bush actually gets a bump in the polls against Kerry in Oregon and nationwide if Nader is bumped off the ballot:

 http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/08/295244.shtml
 http://www.theunitycampaign.org/battleground/
 http://www.usatoday.com/news/polls/tables/live/2004-08-23-florida-poll.htm

SO BY THEIR OWN LOGIC, REFUSING TO SIGN NADER ON THE BALLOT IS A VOTE FOR BUSH

And that is exactly why virtually ALL pro-Bush Oregon Republicans have indeed REFUSED TO SIGN NADER ON THE BALLOT. They've known where to go to find Nader signature gatherers. They've known that all they would have to do is go to the Saturday Market or any other high-traffic place and find a signature-gatherer for Nader and sign. Where were all the pro-life activists? The ones that used to go out and blockade clinics all day long? An hour or two hunting around on any given weekend would be enough to find a Nader petition gatherer. The throngs of pro-Bush Republican signers were no-show here. They weren't in Michigan, so what gives here? If the word was out among Republicans that getting Nader on the ballot was a key to Bush victory in Oregon, the Nader campaign would have gotten 100,000 signatures the first week.

The Republicans aren't trying to get Nader on the ballot at all in Oregon. Just the opposite. They are in bed with the Democrats to protect their two-party corporate duopoly in collusion with the corporate media.

They know damn well that in battlegrounds states with a strong base of left-progressive or union activism any press linking Republicans with the Nader campaign will actually hurt Nader's chances of getting on the ballot. They also know that Nader on the ballot would galvanize the anti-WTO, anti-Patriot-Act, anti-war and pro-gay-marriage conservatives in the state, who are already the majority of Nader's support in Oregon. Pro-gay-marriage conservatives don't exist, you say? Look at this exit poll from 2000 and get a clue:

GORE BUSH BUCHANAN NADER
Are you gay, lesbian or bisexual?
% of total category % of category
5 Yes 32 44 11 12
95 No 47 48 0 4
 http://www.msnbc.com/m/d2k/g/polls.asp?office=P&state=OR

That's right, Bush 44, Gore 32, Nader 12, Buchanan 11 among the 5% of Oregonians self-identifying as Gay, Lesbian or Bi. It's obvious that the gay marriage issue would be much more important to conservative gay/les/bi voters than for liberal-left ones. So Nader could pick up one or even two percent of the vote from the Buchanan and Bush columns just from this slice of demographic. Bush just tried to write conservative gay/les/bi voters out of the Constitution, for goodness sakes!

Why have the pro-Bush Republicans made such high-profile statements about helping Nader in Oregon when they haven't done a damn thing to help at all except sound off to the press knowing damn well it would harm the signature drive? Why have they made statements to the press at critical moments during the Nader ballot access campaign to give life to the lie that they are doing anything at all to help the Nader campaign get ballot access? Why couldn't Dick Armey and Karl Rove get one or two or three thousand Republicans to show up at the April or June Nader conventions and line up an hour early to make absolutely certain Nader got on the ballot? They can install Bush as President after he lost the election, they can concoct evidence to justify annexing Iraq, but they can't find a way to get three thousand operatives to show up and stand in line? They're not interested in having Nader on the ballot, not one bit. Why would they? Nader tells the damning truth about Bush, which Kerry steadfastly refuses to do. Why would the Republicans want to get Nader on the ballot when they already have a Bush apologist running as the Democrat? Dirty tricks were used to install Kerry as the nominee. All genuine opposition candidats were shot down in the primaries to annoint Kerry, because he agrees with Bush on the entire corporate agenda -- WTO, war, Patriot Act, Homeland Security and the "emergency" unconstitutional merging of the military with domestic law enforcement.

And of course in Michigan the Republicans tried to force Nader onto the ballot as an Independent because they didn't want him on the ballot as the Reform Party candidate. That's why they went out and got 45,000 signatures to put Nader on as Indpendent there. That was the same damn organization that Dick Armey runs, which did absolutely nothing like that to put Nader on here in Oregon -- because the Reform Party has no ballot line in Oregon.

I have no doubt the Republicans are also colluding with the Democrats to support this nut in Michigan who claims he's the chair of the Reform Party's Michigan chapter, when the Reform Party USA has voted explicitly to recognize the other, legitimate, organization as its Michigan chapter. If I write a letter to the Secretary of State here and claim to be the chair of the REAL Republican Party of Oregon, will the Secretary of State throw up his hands and say, well, you're not recognized by the Republican Party as such, but I can't put Bush on the ballot until this matter is settled?

Republicans and Democrats are colluding across the nation to keep Nader off the ballot, because they want to make absolutely certain Nader doesn't get into any Presidential Debates this fall, or is even able to mount a press campaign to agitate for him to be in the debates. The corporate Republican and Democrat leadership are cooperating to protect their common interest in silencing anyone who dares speak out for the majority of the population who opposes American imperialism, opposes the WTO and opposes the Patriot Act.

To the corporate parties, silence is golden. If they can manage to shut us all up, by hook or by crook, until the election is over, then they have won again, no matter who they install in the White House.

Sick of Nader 04.Sep.2004 14:07

former supporter

You know what? I am sick of the way Nader's Portland people are always on TV whining ansd sniveling.

I remember when Nader spoke on KBOO a couple of months ago and I was dismayed by his response to a caller when questioned about inconsistenies of 911.

I guess I just can't stand the guy and I would never vote for someone who hates baseball and denies his workers the right to organize.

Oh well he is an old man and will soon be in a nursing home. The the rest of us will be left to struggle with the bankrupt legacy of BUSH/NADER

of all the lying smears - now Nader hates baseball? 06.Sep.2004 14:32

IMPEACH BUSH NOW!

talk about sniveling. Well, I guess this one might as well be debunked along with all the rest:

no, actually, I won't post a direct link. I'll just say this:

google on the following:

"lou gehrig" nader

and go way back out to left field where you came from and fish around for some more ad hominem idiocy to hurl at the head and shoulders most qualified candidate for President in the running.