Hawaii Responds in Supreme Court Ralph Nader Case

Flickr: soundfromwayout

With a response from the Hawaii Office of Elections now in hand, the U.S. Supreme Court can decide whether to hear the lawsuit four-time presidential candidate Ralph Nader filed after he was left off the ballot in 2004.

The nation's highest court had requested an answer from the state after Nader's attorneys argued Hawaii's election laws are a violation of his constitutional rights. The response was filed on March 4, the day of the deadline. It was provided to Civil Beat by the Office of Elections.

Nader didn't make the ballot because he didn't have enough signatures.

His attorneys had not argued that the number of signatures required for independent candidates to get on the ballot is unfairly high — instead, they argued that it's unfair when compared to the far lower hurdles facing minor party candidates.

In its 30-odd-page brief, Office of Elections attorney Aaron Schulaner argued that Hawaii's laws are fair to independent presidential candidates because they are given an extra five months to obtain the requisite signatures, and because independent candidates have the added convenience of not needing to fight for a party nomination.

Read the full brief:

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