So. Newt didn’t read the rules carefully enough and despite having a Republican Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of the Commonwealth, and a legislature, he will not be on the Republican primary ballot in Virginia. It was just the other day that he left campaigning to go gather signatures in his adopted state
Virginia is probably the most difficult state on which to get on a primary ballot. Signatures have to come from all 11 Congressional Districts, at least 400 from each. Those who gather the signatures must be registered to vote in Virginia. There must be at signatures from at least 10,000 registered voters. In other words, you have to have a ground organization to succeed. I believe that Newt actually paid people per signature and still didn’t make it.
The Virginia Republican primary will now be between Mitt Rommey and Ron Paul. 50 delegates elected on March 6. Gingrich was leading the polls, but who knows where his support will go now. And what will the fallout be for the rest of states on Super Tuesday. Maybe he can lose Virginia and still get delegates elsewhere. Or maybe voters will see the disorganization and look elsewhere.
But on Newt would announce he will run a write in campaign before reading Virginia election law which prohibits write-ins in primaries. The reaction of his campaign: This is Pearl Harbor. Wrong, Newt. No one will die because you couldn’t read the rules and get on the Virginia ballot.
Virginia’s rules regarding qualifications for the ballot in statewide elections are clear, said Tucker Martin, a spokesman for Gov. Bob McDonnell.
“Prior candidates for president, governor and senator, from both parties, have needed to meet the same requirements as are in place for this election. It is unfortunate that a number of candidates did not submit enough verified signatures to qualify for the March primary, but the system has been in place for a long time and the ballot requirements well-known,” he said.
“The governor, however, is certainly disappointed that Virginia will not have a more competitive primary,” Martin said. “He would have preferred to see more candidates make the ballot.”
Credit: MARK GORMUS/TIMES-DISPATCH
So what are the options. Getting the Virginia Legislature to allow all the candidates on the ballot? Not exactly fair to Romney and Paul. Gingrich going to court? I would say his changes aren’t good given that even the Republican Governor says the rules are clear and well known. And they have been in place since the 1970’s.
I think that Newt along with Perry, Bachmann, Huntsman, and Santorum are just out of luck.