08 October 2015
ACLU of Southern California
Brendan Hamme, 714.450.3963, email@example.com
LOS ANGELES – California’s Elections Code discriminates against
candidates affiliated with so-called “non-qualified” parties by forcing
them to falsely state “Party Preference: None” on the ballot when they
clearly prefer a political party, the ACLU Foundation of Southern
California and pro-bono attorneys charged in a lawsuit filed today.
The suit, filed in federal court in Los Angeles, was brought on
behalf of Emidio Soltysik, the National Male Co-Chair and California
State Chair of the Socialist Party USA, and Jennifer McClellan, a member
of the Party’s National Committee. It seeks an injunction allowing
candidates affiliated with non-qualified parties the same right to list
their party preference afforded to other candidates.
The code violates candidates’ First Amendment and Equal Protection
rights, said Brendan Hamme, an ACLU of Southern California (ACLU SoCal)
attorney. “Party affiliation is the single largest factor in how the
vast majority of voters vote,” he said. “Yet candidates who associate
with non-qualified parties are denied the ability to convey this vital
information to voters on the ballot.”....
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