Nader/Gonzalez favor one federal standard for federal ballot access in all of the states.
Right now, each state sets its own standards and third party and independent candidates must spend hundreds of thousands of dollars and thousands of hours for a chance to get on the ballots of the various states.
In some states, it is fairly simple to get on the ballot.
For example, in Louisiana, Nader/Gonzalez writes a check for $500, line up electors—and we’re on the ballot.
But that’s the exception.
Check out the requirements in these nightmare states: (And remember, we need to collect double the number required in each state because many are arbitrarily invalidated.)
- Texas, requires 74,108 valid signatures between March 5 and May 8. Deplorably, anyone who has voted in the primary cannot sign the petition.
- Oklahoma, requires 43,913 by July 15.
- North Carolina requires 69,743 by June 12. In 2000, it cost Pat Buchanan $250,000 to collect enough signatures for ballot access in that state.
- Indiana requires 32,742 by June 20.
- Georgia requires 42,489 by July 8th
Ballot access was much easier in the nineteenth century. Voters had more candidates and small parties to choose from. Ballot access is much, much easier in other Western democracies.
As a result small parties were able to pioneer the great social justice movements such as abolition of slavery, women’s right to vote, and protections for workers and farmers.
Currently, ballot obstruction can consume upwards of a quarter million dollars in a federal campaign’s budget to get on the ballot in one or more states.
Without candidates’ rights to be on the ballot—in a country where ninety percent of House districts are one-party dominated heavily due to gerrymandering—voters are becoming further disenfranchised.