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United States Fourth Circuit

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S. Carolina Green Party v. S. Carolina State Election Comm'n, 09-1915

In an action by an individual and the South Carolina Green Party challenging the constitutionality of South Carolina's "sore-loser" statute, as applied to plaintiff's Green Party candidacy for a state House Seat, a ruling upholding the constitutionality of the statute is affirmed where: 1) the impact of the sore-loser statute imposed only a modest burden on the Green Party's association rights, and thus, strict scrutiny does not apply; 2) South Carolina's sore-loser statute advances several important state regulatory interests that justify the modest burden imposed; 3) thus, there was no violation of the Green Party's association rights; 4) South Carolina's status as a state permitting "fusion" candidates does not alter this analysis; and 5) the sore loser statute is constitutional as applied to plaintiff's Green Party candidacy, and he was properly barred from having his name appear on the general election ballot.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 07/20/2010
  • Published 07/20/2010


  • KEENAN, Circuit Judge


  • United States Fourth Circuit


  • For Appellant:
  • Bryan Sells, Andrew Lindemann

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