By Amya Mitchell | editor-in-chief
The College Libertarians of Troy University is holding a rally on Tuesday to support the Libertarian Party of Alabama’s work to end what they say is unequal treatment of third party candidates in the state and be placed on the election ballot as a major political party in Alabama.
The Rally Against Political Corruption will be held on the Montgomery campus of Troy University from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., coinciding with the Libertarian Party of Alabama’s scheduled 9 a.m. appearance in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.
According to a press release from the group, the Alabama Secretary of State’s office is responsible for distributing the voter registration given to the Republican and Democrat parties at no charge. However, third party or independent candidates must pay for each name they receive, which could be upwards of $36,000.
“The LPA is challenging the unequal treatment of third party and independent candidates with this lawsuit,” the group said in a news release. “We hope the outcome of this lawsuit will improve this situation for all candidates in the great state of Alabama.”
In a Feb. 2019 interview, Secretary of State John Merrill told al.com he was following state law by charging one-cent per voter name. The Libertarian party argues that there is no justification for a charge when the list is already prepared and provided for free to other parties.
Furthermore, according to the al.com article, the LPA said it needs the list to gain ballot access because state law requires parties to submit a list of signatures equaling at least 3% of the voters who cast ballots in the previous election to get statewide placement on a ballot.
During Monday’s rally, Libertarian speakers from around the state and nation will give speeches, including Spike Cohen (2020 Libertarian VP Candidate), Vermin Supreme (2020 Massachusetts Senatorial Libertarian Candidate), Jonathan Realz (2022 US Congressional Candidate AL D-2), and Portia Shepherd (Alabama House Candidate and host of Portia Takes on the BlackBelt and Beyond).
For more information about the lawsuit or rally, contact Libertarian Party of Alabama Chair Gavin Goodman at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit lpalabama.org.