Monday, January 9, 2012

Americans Elect Submit Petitions to SOS

Americans Elect --  a  national organization touted as a computer-age alternative to “hyper-partisanship” and special-interest dominance in electoral politics -- took a step forward Monday by submitting petition signatures to get on the ballot in New Mexico.

Patricia Pallares of Bosque Farms, who has been active in the group, said she brought in petitions with 6,891 signatures to the Secretary of State’s Office.

State Bureau of Elections Director Bobbi Shearer said a minor political party needs a little more than 3,000 signatures to get on the ballot. Shearer said her staff will determine how many of Americans Elect’s signatures are valid in about a week or 10 days.

Ken Ortiz, the  Secretary of State’s chief of staff, said if enough of the group’s signatures are verified, Americans Elect will join the Democratic, Republican Libertarian and New Mexico Independent parties on the ballot in November.

Americans Elect was established last year as a way to get average citizens — not the bases of the major parties — involved in the nominating process. All registered voters in the country — and who have access to a computer — are allowed to become delegates.

More in tomorrow's New Mexican