Green Party

Fight Against Unfair Election Practices Gains National Recognition

The Green Party of the United States announced its support for Glenn Ross in the Ross v. Board of Elections law suit. Ross, the Green Party candidate for Baltimore City Council 13th District, is suing the State Board of Elections for illegally allowing his opponent to appear on the ballot in the 2004 race.

The Maryland Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, heard the case in early March. There is no word on when a decision is expected.

Ross originally filed suit against the State Board of Elections on November 5, 2004, on the grounds that the defendant unlawfully allowed his opponent, Paula Branch, to appear on the ballot in Baltimore’s 13th City Council district race, despite missing campaign finance reports. Maryland election law prohibits the candidacy of any individual on whose behalf campaign finance reporting is delinquent.

The Circuit Court of Baltimore ruled against Ross on the basis that he had missed the deadline to file suit, even though the State Board of Elections advised him in late October 2004 to take the issue to court after the election.

Ross says: “The State Board of Elections should follow its own rules. Since the election, they have continued to evade accountability for a lack of decision-making and have shown inappropriate favoritism to my opponent.”

In early January 2005, the State Board of Elections charged 53 people with failure to file campaign finance reports, yet no one from the Branch campaign was charged.

Attorney J. Carroll Holzer of Towson is representing Ross in this appeal.

Ross has also filed a separate request with the State Board of Elections to rule on Branch’s ineligibility to be sworn in as a City Council member on December 9th, 2004. Based on an independent examination of Branch’s records, Ross is refuting the State Board of Electionsí claims that Branch’s campaign finance reports were up to date as of the inauguration, calling the Board’s claims incorrect.

April 19, 2005