Lamborn Turns to Federal Court to Get Back on Ballot

Comes after Colorado Supreme Court ruled that he didn’t qualify

Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., is appealing to keep his name on the ballot. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., is appealing to keep his name on the ballot. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Posted April 26, 2018 at 10:35am

Colorado Rep. Doug Lamborn is heading to federal court to get his name back on the ballot for the Republican primary after the Colorado Supreme Court knocked it off.

Colorado’s Supreme Court ruled on Monday that Lamborn was not eligible for the ballot.

The court said Lamborn’s campaign violated state rules when two of the gatherers of the 1,000 GOP signatures required to be on the ballot were people not from the state.

But Lamborn’s campaign is now appealing to the U.S. District Court of Colorado, saying the residency is a violation of free speech and free association, the Denver Post reported.

“We believe that the part of Colorado law that requires petition gatherers to be residents of the state is manifestly unconstitutional, and controlling case decisions here in Colorado and courts around the country have agreed with that assessment,” Lamborn’s spokesman Dan Bayens said in a statement.

Bayens said people who signed the petitions were being deprived of their constitutional rights.

Many of the people who were behind the petition challenge were supporters of one of Lamborn’s challengers, state Sen. Owen Hill.

“The court did not decide an election. The court determined that Lamborn’s campaign broke the law, committed petition fraud and should not be allowed to appear on the Republican primary ballot,” said Kyle Fisk, a spokesman for the group behind the lawsuit.

The other challenger is El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn, who lost in his challenge to Democratic incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet in 2016.

Colorado’s primary is June 26. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the race Solid Republican.

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Correction, 11:00 a.m. | A previous version of this story misstated the nature of why Lamborn’s signatures were considered invalid.