Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Democratic primary -- LD24 candidate challenge update

Last week, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Arthur Anderson granted an injunction to prevent Lois Jean McDermott's name from appearing on the Democratic primary election ballots for the LD24 nomination for a seat in the Arizona House of Representatives.

On Monday, McDermott's attorney, Kory Langhofer filed Notice of Appeal at the Arizona Supreme Court. This afternoon, Langhofer filed his opening brief. The brief presents these issues:

1. Was Ms. Dedolph’s challenge to the nomination of Ms. McDermott untimely under Section 16-351(A) of the Arizona Revised Statutes?
2. Does Section 16-311(G) of the Arizona Revised Statutes permit the use of a surname nickname (i.e., “Cheuvront”) on nomination papers and ballots?
3. If the use of the Cheuvront nickname is prohibited by statute, did Ms. McDermott have adequate advance notice of that prohibition?
4. If use of a surname nickname is technically a departure from the statutory requirements, does Ms. McDermott’s nomination paper substantially comply with the statutory requirements?
Langhofer argues that the challenge was filed two days late; that A.R.S. § 16-311 (G) does allow McDermott to use "Cheuvront"; that even if that statute actually prohibits the use of said nickname, McDermott wasn't warned ahead of time; and that if it IS prohibited, her nomination paper is still substantially in compliance with statute. Therefore, McDermott's name should be on the August ballot, the brief concludes.

One thing I do not see in the brief is asking the Supreme Court to put McDermott back on the ballot even if it finds that statute prohibits use of the name Cheuvront. The issue occurs to me, but I do not know if that question is even relevant.

Langhofer advised that Dedolph's response is due by 5pm on Monday (July 2) and his response to that brief will be due by 5pm on Tuesday. He expects the Court to issue a ruling on Thursday (July 5).

Yesterday, I asked House Minority Leader Chad Campbell (one of the two incumbent lawmakers against whom McDermott and Tom Nehrini are waging an arduous, uphill battle) for his thoughts in the event McDermott is restored to the ballot. Campbell said he's prepared for the campaign either way and that "...with Ken's voting record, I'm not sure why his mom even wants to use his name."

As I receive more info, I will keep you posted.

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