updated 10/24/2004 7:14:55 AM ET 2004-10-24T11:14:55

The Supreme Court on Saturday refused to place independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader on the ballot in Pennsylvania, upholding a state court finding of flawed signatures on voter petition sheets.

  1. Other political news of note
    1. Animated Boehner: 'There's nothing complex about the Keystone Pipeline!'

      House Speaker John Boehner became animated Tuesday over the proposed Keystone Pipeline, castigating the Obama administration for not having approved the project yet.

    2. Budget deficits shrinking but set to grow after 2015
    3. Senate readies another volley on unemployment aid
    4. Obama faces Syria standstill
    5. Fluke files to run in California

Nader asked the high court on Thursday to review Pennsylvania’s decision to remove him. A state court cited legal problems with his nomination papers that left him thousands of signatures short of the number required for the Nov. 2 ballot.

Nader campaign spokesman Kevin Zeese called the decision “disappointing” and said Nader would continue to appeal decisions made on the state level, even after the election.

Nader’s request for a review went to Justice David H. Souter, who referred the matter to the full court. The justices on Saturday denied the appeal. Nader wanted the justices to put him on the ballot while they considered whether to hear an appeal of the Pennsylvania ruling.

The Supreme Court has not yet acted on a similar appeal from Nader involving Ohio.

Nader contended that Pennsylvania courts improperly excluded signatures from more than 15,000 state residents who are not registered to vote. He said such a requirement is a violation of First Amendment rights of expression and association.

On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld a lower court that had found the petition sheets were “rife with forgeries.” The lower court determined that fewer than 19,000 of the more than 51,000 signatures submitted were valid; Nader needed at least 25,697 to be listed on the ballot.

Democrats wanted to keep Nader off the Pennsylvania ballot because they fear he could pull votes away from Sen. John Kerry and give President Bush the advantage in their closely fought race for the state’s 21 electoral votes, the nation’s fifth-largest prize.

In 2000, Democrat Al Gore carried Pennsylvania, beating Republican George W. Bush by fewer than 205,000 votes out of 4.9 million cast. Nader, the Green Party nominee that year, received 103,392 votes.

Overall, Nader will be on the ballot in 34 states and the District of Columbia.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments