Law could keep candidate out of James Island race

Original post: Former Democrat Eugene Platt lost his primary bid to become the Dems' nominee for state House District 115 race in November, but that doesn't mean he's giving up. Platt is hoping to become the Green Party nominee for the James Island seat, a spot he secured before the Democratic primary even took place.

There's one problem though: State law could keep him out of the race. From Charleston City Paper:

The state law says that if a candidate who lost in the primary attempts to be placed on the general election ballot, the county party chair can seek through the courts to enjoin him/her from being included on the ballot.

The gray area is the term “thereafter” in the law. Since Platt secured the Green Party nomination prior to the Dem primary, he could argue that this electoral double jeopardy doesn’t apply in his case.

Platt was also chosen as the nominee for the Working Families Party this year, as The Post and Courier reports:

(Platt is) also the nominee of the Working Families Party and said he was recently picked as the Green Party nominee for District 115.

Garry Baum, spokesman for the S.C. Election Commission, said it is possible under state law to be listed as a nominee of more than one political party, which is called being a "fusion" candidate.

Platt ran for the seat in 2006, losing to Republican Wallace Scarborough by only 40 votes.

Update 1: The Post and Courier says that Platt had also signed a "pledge with the Democratic Party vowing that he wouldn't run again this fall."

But, the newspaper says, the state law preventing a re-run may prove to be the larger challenge. The S.C. Election Commission will consider the situation June 27.

Update 2: According to Platt, who contacted us late Friday, June 20, he does think there was a pledge signed, however he states that this pledge applied only to his running as a write-in candidate or a petition candidate, not as a candidate for a party that had previously chosen him as their nominee, in accordance with South Carolina election law, Section 7-11-210.

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