Oklahoma voters seek easier access for third parties

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October 11, 2012

Oklahoma

By Johanna Herman

TULSA, Oklahoma: A Oklahoma judge ruled last month that a third party candidate was not allowed onto the November General election. Residents who were upset at the ruling participated in a rally at the Capital stating their displeasure with the decision. Gaining third party access has been notoriously hard in Oklahoma, in 2011 the State House of Representatives passed a measure to reduce the amount of signatures needed to get on the ballot but it failed to pass in the Senate. A Libertarian candidate for the 4th District, stated his opinion that it seemed unfair for politicians to keep other parties off the ballot, if residents were not happy with Democrats or Republicans they had no other choices to pick. Write-in candidates are also not allowed, so voters could not make other choices outside of the designated parties. There will be a Libertarian candidate on 47 state's ballots, but not in Oklahoma. Opponents to the current system have stated that not allowing official parties on the ballot goes against the spirit of the law which is aimed at keeping non valid parties off. They also stated that if a candidate wins because of the lack of other candidate options then it is not a fair election. Libertarian candidates have stated how difficult it is to gain ballot access because the amount of signatures needed to get on the ballot is so high.[1]

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