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Possible Extension of State Senate Petition Deadline

By Jason Weinstein.
A State Supreme Court judge in Albany has issued an Order to Show Cause to the State Board of Election over the issue of extending the deadline for submitting petition signatures in the race for the 52nd District State Senate seat.

As of now the deadline is august 18th for independent party candidates to turn in 3,000 valid signatures to get on the ballot. Denver Jones, who is seeking to run on the Taxpayer Line, petitioned the court on the issue. Jones and the Board of Election will meet in the Albany courtroom of State Supreme Court Judge Roger McDonough on August 18th - the day of the deadline - at 11am. Until then both Jones and Rich Purtell, who is seeking to run as a Libertarian, are collecting signatures.

"We absolutely have to have 3,000 verified signatures. We're going to get challenged on everything we've got so we're looking at (getting) 6,000. We're right on the close of right around 3,000 right now," said Jones.

"I'm at about 1,000 signatures at this point. We need to get 3,000 valid signatures which means we need a cushion above that, probably 4,000-plus so we can survive any dismissals or challenges," said Purtell.

Jones' attorney, Douglas Walter Drazen, argues that the period of time third-party candidates have to collect signatures is shortened because of the special circumstances surrounding this election.

The Senate seat became vacant upon the conviction of Tom Libous on July 27th. Right now the race features the Democrat, former Broome County Executive Barbara Fiala against Republican, Broome County Undersheriff Fred Akshar.