ColoradoPols highlights one of the particular dangers facing the Colorado Republican Party right now resulting from the bizarre governor's race. According to state law, a "major" party is one whose gubernatorial nominee received at least ten percent of the vote in the most recent election. Republican gubernatorial nominee Dan Maes is now polling below 17 percent and is still dropping like a stone.
If Maes finishes below ten percent, then the Colorado Republican Party is technically not a major party for the next four years. This, it turns out, strongly affects how the party can raise money. Major party candidates are allowed to raise money in both the primary and general election cycles. Minor parties, however, can only raise money in a primary cycle if there's a primary challenger. This would substantially reduce Republican candidates' ability to fundraise during the next two cycles.
In reality, I doubt that Democrats would press their advantage on that point. Courts would probably intervene to declare laws giving an advantage to one of the two actual major parties in the state unconstitutional as applied, even if neutral when written, and the General Assembly could easily redefine "major party" in order to deny the American Constitution Party the perks of that status, something that Democrats and Republicans in the Colorado General Assembly would probably be happen to conspire to do. Any number of defititions that incorporate legislative seats held, as well as a single election turnout in a Governor's race, would suffice to achieve that result.
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