Libertarians may have lost major party status to Mickey Mouse

Saturday, December 10, 2016

By Evan Smith

Washington’s Libertarian Party appears to have lost out on qualifying for major-political-party status because too many people voted for Mickey Mouse or wrote in another name on the November presidential-election ballot.

I reported Wednesday that Libertarians had qualified for major-party status because their presidential candidate had slightly exceeded the 5 percent threshold for major-party status.

However, the Secretary of State now reports that the Libertarians fell short because they needed 5 percent of a larger number.

The secretary of state’s web site shows Libertarian Gary Johnson with 5.01 percent of statewide votes for president, but that's 5.01 percent of the 3.21 million votes for the seven candidates on Washington ballots.


However, Johnson's 160,879 vote total is less than 5 percent of the 3.32 million total votes for president a total that includes the 107,805 write-in votes cast around the state. It doesn't have to be 5 percent of the 3.36 million total ballots cast, a figure that includes 46,385 ballots with the presidential line blank. So if 100,000 of the who wrote in Mickey Mouse or anyone else had simply not voted for president , the Libertarians would have qualified.

Major-party status would have meant a vote for Libertarian precinct committee officers and a Libertarian section on presidential-primary ballots.


updated 12-11-2016

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