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Constitution Party to appear on November ballot

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 | 10:34 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA - Although the Constitution Party of Missouri was recertified in the state earlier this month, its candidates will not appear on Tuesday's primary ballot.

The party, which in its platform emphasizes values derived from founding documents, was originally certified in the state in 1992. It lost ballot status in 2004 because of its inability to garner enough votes.

CONSTITUTION PARTY SLATE

Federal offices
President of the U.S.: Chuck Baldwin
Vice president of the U.S.: Darrel Castle
3rd District U.S. Representative: Cynthia L. Redburn
7th District U.S. Representative: Travis Maddox
8th District U.S. Representative: Richard L. Smith
State Offices
Governor: Gregory E. Thompson
Lieutenant governor: James C. Rensing
Secretary of state: Denise C. Neely
Treasurer: Rodney D. Farthing
11th District State Representative: David A. Leefe
64th District State Representative: Mark R. Opheim
76th District State Representative: Donald L. Simmons
92nd District State Representative: Donald R. Griffin
109th District State Representative: Ken Bissey
149th District State Representative: Dennis E. Hustead
151st District State Representative: Robert Lee Mills
152nd District State Representative: Thad L. Wheeler
157th District State Representative: Jennifer Allie Friedrich



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According to Chapter 115 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, the party's recertification allows ballot access for the general election but not for the primary.

"We had to start all over, like a brand new party," said Donna Ivanovich, the Constitution Party's state chairwoman.

The process of getting back on the ballot involved obtaining 10,000 signatures from valid Missouri voters. Party affiliates submitted a list of 16,000 signatures last April, the extra 6,000 to cover possibly invalid signatures.

"It was very time consuming," Ivanovich said of recertification. "We went to lots of fairs and festivals and talked to lots of people."

The secretary of state announced the party as officially certified on July 2.

If any Constitution Party candidate is able to attain at least 2 percent of the statewide vote, the party will have candidates on the primary ballot for the next election.

"Primary ballot access is only available to established political parties in Missouri," said Ryan Hobart, spokesman for the secretary of state's office. The three established parties in Missouri are the Democrat, Republican and Libertarian parties.

Gregory Thompson, the Constitution Party's candidate for governor, said he supports the party's emphasis on God, the family and the country, as long as it is not just rhetoric.

"I'm not fond of politics, but I knew someone needed to step in that would not be compromised," he said of his candidacy.

If elected, Thompson said he plans to restore more control to local government, something he believes the founding documents emphasize. He said giving too much power to too few individuals often leads to the encroachment of citizens' rights, and the Founding Fathers instituted the Bill of Rights to protect them.

"The government is supposed to serve the people; people don't serve the government," he said.

The Constitution Party will have candidates on the ballot in November for four of the five statewide races, for three of the nine congressional races and for nine state representative races.

 


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