Mar 21 2013

Virginia Governor Signs Bill Lowering Presidential Petition Requirements

Source: Ballot Access News

On March 18, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell signed SB 690, which lowers the number of signatures for all presidential candidates (both presidential primary and general election) from 10,000 signatures to 5,000 signatures.

Indiana now has the most difficult mandatory presidential primary petition requirement in the nation. Indiana requires 4,500 signatures, with 500 signatures from each of the nine U.S. House districts. Although 4,500 is a lower number than 5,000, the Indiana requirement, as a percentage of the number of votes in the state, is higher than the equivalent percentage in Virginia. Also the Indiana distribution requirement is far more difficult than the Virginia distribution requirement. The Virginia distribution requirement is now 200 signatures from each of the eleven U.S. House districts.

Very soon, a bill will be introduced in the North Carolina legislature to lower the number of signatures for newly-qualifying parties and independent candidates. The fact that Virginia now requires only 5,000 signatures for presidential candidates in the general election will be useful, as North Carolina legislators consider whether they should relax the requirement of 89,430 signatures to approximately 11,000 signatures.

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