The latest on the Virginia Republican party’s ballot problem is a letter sent to the state board of elections and the chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia on December 31 by counsel for the Bachmann, Gingrich, Huntsman, and Santorum campaigns. The letter notes the federal lawsuit filed by Gov. Rick Perry on Dec. 27 seeking a declaratory judgment that provisions of the Virginia Code that have kept Perry off the ballot are unconstitutional. Perry’s lawsuit seeks certification of Perry as a candidate on the Republican ballot.
On Dec. 29, federal district court judge John Gibney invited the Perry campaign to contact the other Republican candidates who were barred from the ballot, and set a hearing date of Jan. 13 to hear arguments on the claim. The Dec. 31 letter sent by the other candidates asks the state election board to “either take action to add them to the ballot mooting their challenges (and avoiding unnecessary costs and expenses to the state and the parties) or not undertake action until Judge Gibney has had an opportunity to hear from the parties on January 13, 2012.” According to the letter, the four candidates intend to file a joint motion to intervene in Perry’s lawsuit, which will probably happen on Tuesday, Jan. 3, when the courts reopen (Monday is a federal holiday).