Saturday, December 31, 2011

Presidential Elections 2012 - #3533 - Virginia Attorney Ken Cuccinelli Intervenes in GOP Primary Dispute - Fox News

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli is intervening in the Virginia presidential primary dispute and plans to file emergency legislation to address the inability of most Republican presidential candidates to get their name on the ballot, Fox News has learned.  Only Mitt Romney and Ron Paul qualified for the Virginia primary, a contest with 49 delegates up for grabs.  The failure of other candidates to qualify -- notably Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry -- led to complaints that the 10,000-signature requirement is too stringent.  Cuccinelli, who is a Republican, shared the concerns.  "Recent events have underscored that our system is deficient," he said in a statement. "Virginia owes her citizens a better process. We can do it in time for the March primary if we resolve to do so quickly."  Cuccinelli's proposal is expected to state that if the Virginia Board of Elections certifies that a candidate is receiving federal matching funds, or has qualified to receive them, that candidate will upon request be automatically added to the ballot.  Two former Democratic attorneys general are also backing the move, along with a former Democratic state party chairman and a former Republican state party chairman.  Former state Attorney General Tony Troy called the Virginia process a "legal and constitutional embarrassment."  Fellow former top Virginia prosecutor Steve Rosenthal said: "This is not a Democratic or Republican issue. If it takes emergency legislation, then we need to do it."  Sources told Fox News that Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is expected to support the emergency legislation as well.  Perry has meanwhile filed a lawsuit, while a local activist has filed another lawsuit on Gingrich's behalf -- though the individual is not with the campaign.  Article contributed by Steve Peters.

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