Green Party Files Another Lawsuit to Get on MT Ballot, This Time in Federal Court
Montana will print ballots for the November elections next Thursday, but as of now, the Montana Green Party is not set to be on those ballots as the case sits in state court. Montana Green Party Coordinator Dani Breck says they have filed another lawsuit, this time against the Montana Secretary of State in a higher court.
"This is actually a new lawsuit," Breck said. "We, the Montana Green Party, have filed a suit in federal court asking the federal court to strike down certain previsions within their election laws that require the distribution requirements. They are the most draconian requirements in the country. We are the only state in the country that requires distribution to our state house districts."
Breck says the extra requirements of signatures from a certain proportion of Montana State house districts is not only draconian, but also a violation of the First and Fourteenth Amendments. She says a recent court decision that impacted North Dakota law should help the Green Party’s case on an additional matter.
"North Dakota didn't even have a distribution requirement," Breck said. "They shut the law down on the basis of the deadline being too early. We are also bringing that up in our lawsuit. The deadline is too early. The deadline was March 27. As well as the difficulties of being in a geographically large state with a small population and requiring the petition effort to take place over the winter when sometimes you can't even get over the passes."
A decision from the State Supreme Court was expedited and should be released by the 16th of August.