By Robert J. McCarthy
The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court has upheld a lower court decision allowing the authorization of two non-Democratic County Legislature candidates to run on the Democratic line on election ballots this November following the claim of a missed filing deadline.
Erie County Democratic Chairman Jeremy J. Zellner announced the appellate ruling, saying it is a win victory for the party in the controversy.
"The Democratic Party believes that voters deserve a choice at the ballot box and we are committed to preservng the pubic's right to fair and open elections," he said.
Republican Elections Commissioner Ralph M. Mohr filed the appeal of an August decision by State Supreme Court Justice Henry J. Nowak dismissing the GOP lawsuit that sought invalidation of the legislative candidacies of William C. Conrad III against Republican incumbent Kevin R. Hardwick in District 4, and of Alan K. Getter against Republican incumbent Edward A. Rath III in District 6. The case also involves 16 candidates on the town level.
Republicans claimed the Democrats had failed to postmark their authorizations allowing candidates registered with another party to run on their line by the July 15 deadline, while Democrats submitted a Postal Service affidavit pointing to post office error as the reason.
Nowak ruled that a “timely mailing can be demonstrated absent a timely postmark.”