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BLC upholds Sanders, Trump on primary ballots

By DAN TUOHY
New Hampshire Union Leader

November 24. 2015 12:15PM

New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley, left, and Andru Volinsky, an attorney for Bernie Sanders, address the NH Ballot Law Commission on Nov. 24. (Dan Tuohy /UNION LEADER)



The New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission has upheld Secretary of State Bill Gardner’s decision to accept Sen. Bernie Sanders as a Democrat on the presidential primary ballot.

And the commission took just a few minutes Tuesday to dismiss former state GOP Chairman Fergus Cullen's complaint of Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump's placement on the GOP primary ballot.

Cullen claimed that Trump does not represent the views of the Republican Party. "I'm also here to warn that Donald Trump does not share our democratic values. He is a dangerous demagogue ..."

BLC Chairman Bradford E. Cook then interrupted Cullen to ask what authority the commission had to consider any of his claims relative to his views. Cook also said he checked and confirmed that Trump is a registered Republican in New York. Added Cook, "Why are we here?"

The chairman called a vote, which was unanimous in support of Trump on the ballot.

The commission was similarly unanimous in rejecting a complaint by Andy Martin, a presidential hopeful from Manchester, that Sanders was ineligible because he was elected to the U.S. Senate as an Independent from Vermont.

New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley and Andru Volinsky, an attorney representing Sanders, maintained that Sanders is a Democrat and fully qualified to be on the Democratic Party ballot for the first-in-the-nation primary.

The commission on Tuesday also upheld the Secretary of State's decision to accept declaration of candidacy for Republicans Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, dismissing two different complaints that sought to question their eligibility based on the "natural born citizen" constitutional requirement for the presidency.

dtuohy@unionleader.com

 


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