COVID-Related Election Litigation Tracker

Case Details

This database consolidates and tracks litigation concerning the effect of the pandemic on election law. The purpose of this tool is to provide an interactive list of relevant cases that can be searched by issue, court, status, and jurisdiction.

Case Details


Libertarian Party of New Hampshire v. Sununu


Libertarian Party of New Hampshire v. Sununu, No. 1:20-cv-00688 (D.N.H.)

  Case Summary Under New Hampshire law, a candidate unaffiliated with a party must secure nomination papers from registered voters to be placed on the ballot. They need 3,000 for the positions of President, Vice President, U.S. Senator and Governor, and 1,500 for the position of U.S. Representative. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Libertarian party believes that it cannot safely secure these papers because they were normally obtained through door-to-door solicitations or at public events. They sued the Governor and Secretary of State, claiming that: (1) due to the pandemic, the number of nomination papers required places an undue burden on their First Amendment rights of Speech, Petitioning, and Association; (2) these requirements are not narrowly tailored to an important State interest; and (3) Plaintiffs would have secured positions on the ballot in the absence of the pandemic. The plaintiffs ask the Court to enter a temporary restraining order, preliminary and permanent injunctions enjoining the Governor and Secretary of State from denying Plaintiffs’ positions on the election ballot as candidates of the Libertarian Party. Alternatively, the court should reduce the required number of nomination papers by 90%. The motion for temporary restraining order was denied without prejudice for insufficient showing of irreparable harm if immediate temporary injunctive relief was not granted without notice to adverse parties. A hearing for the motion for TRO and preliminary injunction is currently being heard as of July 22. There is also a motion to consolidate the Preliminary Injunction Hearing with the Final Hearing.
Filed 06/09/2020
State New Hampshire
Type of Court Federal
Circuit First Circuit
Status Closed
Last Updated 03/13/2021
Issue Tag(s) Petition Signature Requirement (Threshold Number)
Complaint(s) 06/09/2020: Complaint filed.
Dispositive Ruling(s) 06/11/2020: Order/Ruling, TRO denied without prejudice due to insufficient showing, as required by Rule 65(b)(1)(A), of irreparable harm if immediate temporary injunctive relief is not granted without notice to adverse parties.
07/28/2020: Order/Ruling, Preliminary Injunction granted.
07/28/2020: Order/Ruling, Court grants motion ordering a 35% reduction on the number of nomination papers required for the Libertarian Party's Candidate to appear on the General Election ballot
09/04/2020: Order/Ruling, Final judgment on previous order.
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