As the presidential candidate of the Socialist Equality Party, I urge all supporters of the SEP campaign to send letters and messages to the Government Accountability Board, the Wisconsin state government agency that will decide whether to place the SEP candidates on the ballot for the November 6 presidential election.
The legal staff of the agency initially recommended that the SEP candidates be excluded from the ballot because of an alleged technical flaw in the petitions—the fact that two of the ten presidential electors were listed in the wrong congressional district, because of changes in district boundaries made by the state legislature at the last minute.
The same antidemocratic decision was imposed on the Green Party as well, despite a clear precedent from the 2004 elections, when independent candidate Ralph Nader won a court decision overturning efforts by the Democratic Party to exclude him from the ballot using the same technicality.
Last week, the head of the GAB’s legal staff informed the SEP that he was reversing his recommendation, in the light of the 2004 precedent, and would urge the panel to place both the SEP candidates and the Green Party candidates on the statewide ballot. The reversal, which came after a public campaign that included many letters sent in from SEP supporters, was essentially an acknowledgment that the staff had made an error.
This was a significant advance for the SEP campaign, but there should be no complacency. There must be an intensified campaign of public support, through letters and messages to the GAB demanding that the SEP and the Green Party candidates be placed on the November ballot.
The GAB is not a neutral arbiter but a highly political body, made up of six retired judges appointed by former Democratic Governor Jim Doyle and his Republican successor Scott Walker.
The SEP has submitted the signatures of more than 3,200 state residents, well above the requirement of 2,000, to put our candidates on the ballot. These signatures, gathered in only eight days, are powerful evidence of the desire of working people in Wisconsin for a political alternative to the two big business parties. That is precisely why our campaign has come under attack.
The SEP needs your support, both politically and financially. Send e-mails and letters calling on the GAB to follow its staff recommendation and put Phyllis Scherrer and me on the ballot when it meets on August 28.
I also call on our supporters and all defenders of democratic rights to send donations to help cover our legal expenses for this battle and to make our campaign known as widely as possible.
To donate to the SEP election campaign, click here.
Send all e-mails to:
Government Accountability Board: firstname.lastname@example.org
David Buerger: email@example.com
Letters can be mailed to:
Wisconsin Government Accountability Board P.O. Box 7984 Madison, Wisconsin 53707-7984