Anderson v. Celebrezze
|Anderson v. Celebrezze|
|Court:||U.S. Supreme Court|
|Text:||Text of decision|
|Ohio's early filing deadline violated the First and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, placing an unconstitutional burden on the voting and associational rights of supporters of independent presidential candidates.|
|Trial court:||United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio|
|Appellate court:||United States Court of Appeals|
|Appellate court:||United States Supreme Court|
|Author, appellate decision:||John Paul Stevens|
|Appellate court decision:||April 19, 1983|
An Ohio statute required independent presidential candidates to file statements of candidacy and nominating petitions in March in order to qualify to appear on the general election ballot in November. Independent candidate John Anderson announced his candidacy for President in April 1980 and all requisite paperwork was submitted on May 16, 1980. The Ohio Secretary of State, Anthony J. Celebrezze, refused to accept the documents.
Anderson and his supporters filed an action challenging the constitutionality of the aforementioned statute on May 19, 1980 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. The District Court ruled in Anderson's favor and ordered Celebrezze to place Anderson's name on the ballot. Celebrezze appealed the decision to the United States Court of Appeals, which ultimately overturned the District Court's ruling (the election took place while this appeal was pending).
In a 5-4 decision, the Court reversed the ruling of the Court of Appeals, maintaining that Ohio's early filing deadline indeed violated the voting and associational rights of Anderson's supporters. Justice John Paul Stevens, in the Court's majority opinion, wrote the following:
This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
Ohio's filing deadline prevents persons who wish to be independent candidates from entering the significant political arena established in the State by a Presidential election campaign - and creating new political coalitions of Ohio voters - at any time after mid-to-late March. At this point developments in campaigns for the major-party nominations have only begun, and the major parties will not adopt their nominees and platforms for another five months. Candidates and supporters within the major parties thus have the political advantage of continued flexibility; for independents, the inflexibility imposed by the March filing deadline is a correlative disadvantage because of the competitive nature of the electoral process.
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