Trump, Sanders, Cruz and Rubio Fend Off N.H. Primary Ballot Challenges

Nov 24, 2015

Presidential candidates Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio will remain on the New Hampshire Presidential Primary ballot. That’s after the state Ballot Law Commission unanimously voted Tuesday to reject a handful of challenges to their qualifications to run for president. 

 New Hampshire state law says candidates for president need to do a few things to get on the primary ballot: One is pay a $1,000 fee. Another is affirm they're registered with the political party whose nomination they're seeking. 

Former Chair of the New Hampshire Republican Party Fergus Cullen, who filed the petition against Republican Donald Trump, had a slightly different complaint. He argued Trump's political views are out of sync with the GOP.

"He refused to rule out running as an independent this year, recanted, now this weekend he changed his mind again. He is just using the Republican Party for as long as it suits his needs," Cullen said after the hearing.

But Ballot Law Commission Chairman Bradford Cook said, politics aside, Trump met the requirements to get on the ballot. 

"Mr. Trump filed, gave his address, was over 35 (years old), paid his 1,000 bucks and said he was a Republican; that's it," Cook said.

Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who was born in Canada to an American mother, faced three challenges of whether he is a naturalized citizen. The commission rejected all of them. A similar complaint against Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio was also tossed out. Cook said the issue of naturalization is beyond the commission's jurisdiction.

And when it came to whether Bernie Sanders, a longtime Independent Senator from Vermont, can appear on the Democratic primary ballot, Cook said, "The facts show, he is a Democrat now."

Andy Martin, the New York lawyer who challenged Sanders's status, said he'll appeal to the New Hampshire Supreme Court. Martin is also running for president, as a Republican.