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Thomas F. Schaller | December 13, 2011
Paul Schurick's recent conviction for voter fraud is a sad coda to the 2010 Martin O'Malley-Bob Ehrlich gubernatorial rematch: Sad because Mr. Schurick tainted his reputation as one of the state's best political strategists, and sadder because Governor O'Malley almost certainly would have been re-elected no matter what late-campaign shenanigans Mr. Schurick pulled. But the saddest thing about Schurick's conviction is that his actions are merely one small part of a larger and more systematic attempt by conservative strategists to find ways to suppress voter turnout in service to Republican partisan advantage.
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NEWS
By Don Murphy | July 30, 2013
As the Maryland Republican Party considers reforming its nominating process to include unaffiliated voters, it seems there are as many opinions on the matter as there are Republicans. Opponents of change have the rhetoric, but advocates have the facts on their side. Republicans have not re-elected a governor in Maryland in over 50 years and have not controlled the legislature in anyone's lifetime. Maintaining the status quo and waiting for the Democrats to lose is not a winning strategy.
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NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2012
A non-partisan, national group that plans to run a third-party presidential candidate nominated by an online convention will submit more than 18,000 signatures to the Maryland State Board of Elections on Wednesday with the hope of gaining a spot on the state's ballot in November. Americans Elect, a well-funded nonprofit that is working to gain ballot access in all 50 states, aims to change the way presidents are elected, bypassing the primaries and conventions used by Democrats and Republicans and instead allowing voters to pick a candidate via the Internet.
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2012
A non-partisan, national group that plans to run a third-party presidential candidate nominated by an online convention will submit more than 18,000 signatures to the Maryland State Board of Elections on Wednesday with the hope of gaining a spot on the state's ballot in November. Americans Elect, a well-funded nonprofit that is working to gain ballot access in all 50 states, aims to change the way presidents are elected, bypassing the primaries and conventions used by Democrats and Republicans and instead allowing voters to pick a candidate via the Internet.
NEWS
June 1, 2011
As The Sun's recent editorial noted, the right to petition almost no longer exists in Maryland ("Technicalities kill another petition," May 23). The Frederick petition is only the latest in a very long line of petition drives that have failed to qualify for the ballot in recent years. And this problem affects small political parties as well as ballot questions — currently, all three of Maryland's small parties have lost their status as recognized political parties and are no longer able to nominate candidates for public office.
NEWS
By JACK W. GERMOND & JULES WITCOVER | September 29, 1995
WASHINGTON -- Ross Perot's surprise plan to start a third national party that would field a presidential candidate in 1996 is throwing the Federal Election Commission into a tizzy over questions of how the effort can be legally financed. The immediate question is whether Mr. Perot can bankroll it himself, or will be restricted by federal limits on political contributions.The federal campaign-finance law stipulates that an individual can spend all he wants on a candidacy of his own, as Mr. Perot did in 1992, but can contribute only $1,000 to someone else.
NEWS
By Frank Langfitt | April 14, 1996
In the final days of this year's legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly considered a bill that on principle seemed hard to vote against.At a time of dismal voter turnout and widespread disaffection with government, some lawmakers proposed making it easier for independent candidates to run for office.A common sense, "good government" bill?The Maryland House of Delegates didn't think so. Earlier this month, members killed it by a vote of 74 to 62.The measure would have lowered the number of signatures required to get a candidate's name on the ballot in Maryland, which has one of the most stringent ballot access laws in the country.
NEWS
By Jen DeGregorio and Jen DeGregorio,SUN STAFF | July 31, 2004
Matthew Zawisky marched along Chesapeake Avenue in front of the Towson Library one morning last week, tapping the shoulders of passersby and thrusting petition forms at them. Want to sign to get Ralph Nader on the presidential ballot? he asked one person after another. The usual answer in Maryland, traditionally a Democratic Party stronghold, is no -- often, an angry no, Zawisky said. But the volunteer from Buffalo, N.Y., pledged he would not let Democrats -- many of whom blame Nader for tipping the 2000 election to Republican President Bush -- stop him from collecting as many signatures as possible.
NEWS
By JACK GERMOND & JULES WITCOVER | April 27, 1995
NEW YORK -- There is some old-fashioned political hardball being played by freshman Gov. George E. Pataki and the host of other GOP leaders who have joined Sen. Al D'Amato in his attempt to hand Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole the state's 102 delegates to the 1996 Republican National Convention on a silver platter.They are turning a totally deaf ear to the plea earlier this month of four other declared Republican presidential candidates that they reform the party's delegate-selection rules and procedures in ways that will give them a fighting chance to compete with Dole.
NEWS
March 31, 1995
More ChoiceMaryland ranks 49th out of 50 states in having the least democratic, most restrictive ballot access laws. So why did the state Senate vote against ballot reform?Because opponents feared the measure "would harm the two-party system by making it easier for fringe candidates to get on the ballot."Really? Was the two-party system at risk prior to 1967, when Maryland's tough ballot access laws were enacted?Do other states with more democratic ballot access laws report the difficulty that the senators feared?
NEWS
Thomas F. Schaller | December 13, 2011
Paul Schurick's recent conviction for voter fraud is a sad coda to the 2010 Martin O'Malley-Bob Ehrlich gubernatorial rematch: Sad because Mr. Schurick tainted his reputation as one of the state's best political strategists, and sadder because Governor O'Malley almost certainly would have been re-elected no matter what late-campaign shenanigans Mr. Schurick pulled. But the saddest thing about Schurick's conviction is that his actions are merely one small part of a larger and more systematic attempt by conservative strategists to find ways to suppress voter turnout in service to Republican partisan advantage.
NEWS
June 1, 2011
As The Sun's recent editorial noted, the right to petition almost no longer exists in Maryland ("Technicalities kill another petition," May 23). The Frederick petition is only the latest in a very long line of petition drives that have failed to qualify for the ballot in recent years. And this problem affects small political parties as well as ballot questions — currently, all three of Maryland's small parties have lost their status as recognized political parties and are no longer able to nominate candidates for public office.
NEWS
April 30, 2009
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 has been called the most effective piece of civil rights legislation in American history. Unlike the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed racial segregation in schools, public places and employment but granted Congress only limited powers of enforcement, the Voting Rights Act gave the federal government direct oversight of election procedures in 16 states and counties, mostly in the South, that had a long history...
NEWS
By Jen DeGregorio and Jen DeGregorio,SUN STAFF | July 31, 2004
Matthew Zawisky marched along Chesapeake Avenue in front of the Towson Library one morning last week, tapping the shoulders of passersby and thrusting petition forms at them. Want to sign to get Ralph Nader on the presidential ballot? he asked one person after another. The usual answer in Maryland, traditionally a Democratic Party stronghold, is no -- often, an angry no, Zawisky said. But the volunteer from Buffalo, N.Y., pledged he would not let Democrats -- many of whom blame Nader for tipping the 2000 election to Republican President Bush -- stop him from collecting as many signatures as possible.
NEWS
By Nick Anderson and Nick Anderson,LOS ANGELES TIMES | May 13, 2004
WASHINGTON - The Reform Party endorsed Ralph Nader for president yesterday, providing the independent candidate a potential shortcut onto the ballot in the contested states of Florida, Michigan and Colorado. Nader has yet to decide whether to run in those and four other states as the nominee of the party that Ross Perot founded in the 1990s. But the endorsement gives him that option. Nader has not yet qualified for the ballot in any state, but the Reform Party decision drew renewed attention to his possible impact on the race between President Bush and his presumed Democratic opponent, Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | November 29, 2001
The fledgling Maryland Green Party will ask the state's highest court today to declare unconstitutional a law that the party contends makes it nearly impossible for alternative-party candidates to get on ballots. The Green Party, certified as a political party in Maryland last year, is arguing to the Maryland Court of Appeals that the state's ballot-access law does not meet the standards set by the U.S. Supreme Court, which in 1983 said states must be able to justify ballot-access restrictions.
NEWS
By Mark Guidera and Mark Guidera,Sun Staff Writer | October 29, 1994
There may be no more formidable political task in Maryland than to make a bid for public office as an independent or third-party candidate. Just ask Arthur Reynolds, a Howard County lawyer, or Catherine Wilson, a Harford County civic activist.Both spent months hammering on the doors of strangers, bugging neighbors and corralling parents at Little League games to sign petitions allowing them to seek office this year. If they'd registered as Democrats or Republicans, they wouldn't have needed to bother with the chore.
NEWS
May 19, 1997
Undemocratic laws inhibit third partiesGermond & Witcover's column, ''The Supreme Court decides that two parties are quite enough,'' (May 2) correctly says that third parties ''get a black eye.''The undemocratic decision that states may discriminate against minor parties violates America's agreement to follow the democratic principles of the Helsinki Accords, including respecting ''the right of . . . political parties . . . (to) equal treatment before the law.''Discriminatory laws imposed by major parties on minor parties violate this principle.
NEWS
May 19, 1997
Undemocratic laws inhibit third partiesGermond & Witcover's column, ''The Supreme Court decides that two parties are quite enough,'' (May 2) correctly says that third parties ''get a black eye.''The undemocratic decision that states may discriminate against minor parties violates America's agreement to follow the democratic principles of the Helsinki Accords, including respecting ''the right of . . . political parties . . . (to) equal treatment before the law.''Discriminatory laws imposed by major parties on minor parties violate this principle.
NEWS
By Frank Langfitt | April 14, 1996
In the final days of this year's legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly considered a bill that on principle seemed hard to vote against.At a time of dismal voter turnout and widespread disaffection with government, some lawmakers proposed making it easier for independent candidates to run for office.A common sense, "good government" bill?The Maryland House of Delegates didn't think so. Earlier this month, members killed it by a vote of 74 to 62.The measure would have lowered the number of signatures required to get a candidate's name on the ballot in Maryland, which has one of the most stringent ballot access laws in the country.
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