Skip to comments.'None of the Above' term sought on ballot
Posted on 07/22/2006 12:37:29 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A software developer running for governor and the U.S. Senate felt so strongly that voters should have "None of the Above" as a choice that he made it his middle name.
The State Election Commission voted 5-0 to nix the middle name from the ballot.
Now, David "None of the Above" Gatchell is challenging the commission in court to get the words on the Nov. 7 ballot. "I feel so strongly about this and I knew that it should be my name," he said. "That's who I am."
Gatchell, 58, ran as an independent in the 2002 governor's race on the platform that Tennessee election ballots should include a "None of the Above" choice for voters who don't care for any of the candidates.
Gatchell, who won 6 percent of the gubernatorial vote in 2002, decided in January that he would run for the two seats, and he'll be listed in both races as an independent.
He changed his middle name from Leroy in August.
State law says the election commission can omit a portion of the name or require that further information about the candidate be included on the ballot if four or more members agree the name is confusing or misleading.
Gatchell argues that a number of state gubernatorial candidates are already allowed to include their nicknames and that his middle name has been widely reported by news media and is known across the Internet.
Nevada is the only state to offer a choice of "None of the Above," and it first appeared in 1976. The option is nonbinding it's only to serve as a gauge of public opinion and could never win an election.
Well he's already wasting money like a politician.
It's false advertising. If you vote for "none of the above," you actually get David Gatchell, which is less than none of the above.
I'm all for putting NOTA on the ballot, so long as it's nonbinding and the top human vote getter still wins.
I guess it could be worse - he could have changed his name to "Please Punch Here ->" including the arrow.
However, make a provision in statute that, should NOTA receive the largest plurality of votes (no majority required), then all candidates on that ballot for that office are disqualified from running for ANY public office for a period of 10 years. Note that this can, constitutionally speaking, only apply to state and local offices, although it would have been hugely amusing in certain Regressional races I can remember.
And, should NOTA gain such a plurality, then election for that office shall be held again in 90 days' time, and the current officeholder will remain in office until that time.
I hope he doesn't win the lawsuit. If he does, the ballot can have another choice: None of the above.
I like the German system for changing a name. In Germany you must have a real strong reason to have your name changed so stupidity like "none of the above" is impossible.
This was tried in Louisiana once. Only the guy changed his last name to "None of the above".
The judge allowed the guy to change his name. Then the election commission refused to put him on the ballot. Then the judge refused to allow him to change his name back at least for a while.
"'None of the Above' term sought on ballot"
That's what I find myself looking for lately. I don't like the choices.
I disgree. If NOTA wins, hold a new election, and all the candidates who lost to NOTA are banned from running in that new election.