Making it easier for unaffiliated candidates

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 4, 2011

A state bill sponsored by a local legislator would make it easier for minor political parties and unaffiliated candidates to appear on the ballot.
Sen. Andrew Brock, R-Rowan/Davie, is a primary sponsor of the Electoral Freedom Act of 2011, filed this week.
The bill would lower the signature threshold for listing a new political party on the state ballot to 10,000. Currently, the standard is 2 percent of the total number of voters in the most recent election for governor.
It also would make it easier for the party to stay listed in the next election, requiring 10,000 votes instead of 2 percent of the total.
In addition, unaffiliated candidates would have greater access to the ballot under the proposed bill. It would change the signature thresholds for state offices to flat numbers instead of voter percentages.
Brock is listed as a co-sponsor on bills to clarify that illegal immigrants are not eligible for public benefits and to require that counties, municipalities and public contractors verify the work authorization of newly hired employees.
Rep. Fred Steen, R-Rowan, is a primary sponsor of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, also known as “Ethen’s Law,” which would treat an unborn child as a victim if someone kills or assaults the mother. N.C. Rep. Harry Warren, R-Rowan, is co-sponsoring the bill.
Steen also is co-sponsoring legislation to ban electronics sweepstakes devices. The bill would “prohibit sweepstakes promoters from providing any type of electronic machine or device to sweepstakes entrants.”