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6th Circuit remands third party ballot access case

By Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A federal appeals court has ordered a lower court to reconsider whether Tennessee's requirements to get on the ballot for third parties and their candidates are unconstitutionally restrictive.

In February, U.S. District Judge William Haynes Jr. struck down state rules requiring third party candidates for high-level offices to be selected through a primary. He also struck down a requirement that the parties and candidates collect about 40,000 signatures and turn them in seven months before the election.

After that ruling, the General Assembly changed the law to make it easier for third parties to get on the ballot. On Friday, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals sent the case back to the lower court to re-evaluate the rules in light of the recent changes.