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2024 Montana Primary elections
Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Montana Secretary Of State Plans To Appeal Green Party Ballot Ruling

Voters in Clinton, Montana, cast ballots during the 2016 elections.
Rebekah Welch
UM School of Journalism
Voters in Clinton, MT cast ballots during the 2016 elections.

Montana’s Secretary of State plans to ask the state Supreme Court to overrule a lower court’s decision this week ordering the Green Party off this fall's ballots.

A state judge in Helena granted the Montana Democratic Party’s request on Monday to order the removal of Green candidates from the November ballot because some of the signatures used in the Green Party’s petition to gain ballot access were deemed invalid.

Democrats filed the suit against Republican Secretary of State Corey Stapleton in April, after Stapleton officially certified Greens for the ballot.

Stapleton says the recent district court ruling distorts the facts and that he plans to appeal.

“It violates Montana Supreme Court rules and statue, and ignores Montana’s long established practice of inclusion in democracy. So on behalf of Montana, I’m going to ask the Montana Supreme Court to overrule the judgement of the district court.”

Stapleton says elections officials need a decisive end to this case before August 23 in order to start preparing the November ballot.

If the ruling stands, the Greens’ absence from the ballot is seen by some political observers as a possible boost to Democrats running in close races this year.

Corin Cates-Carney manages MTPR’s daily and long-term news projects. After spending more than five years living and reporting across Western and Central Montana, he became news director in early 2020.
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