“Defendant barred nearly half of New Jersey’s registered voters from participating in New Jersey’s 2013 primary election because they exercised their right not to associate with either the Democrat or Republican Party,” the brief, filed in District Court earlier this month, states. “This action seeks to protect the fundamental right to vote under the New Jersey Constitution and U.S. Constitution from the condition required by the New Jersey Primary Election Law that a voter forfeit his or her First Amendment Right not to associate with a political party.”
The suit goes on to claim that the state, which foots the bill for the annual primary election, is violating the New Jersey constitution by allocating money for the primaries, which are held on behalf of private political parties.
“Today, representatives are accountable to a small partisan base of voters,” said attorney Samuel Gregory, who represents the coalition. “Those who choose not to participate in divisive partisan politics are pushed out or left out of meaningful participation in the electoral process. We believe the system’s first obligation should be to individual voters, not to political parties. When every voter matters, leaders are rewarded for being good representatives, not good party leaders.”
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