A lawsuit was filed on January 8 with the intention to disqualify one particular candidate out of a total of four. All four of them are competing for the open seat available at the Civil District Court in New Orleans. The document claims that the candidate, Richard Guy “Rick” Duplantier, had intentionally listed his particular political party affiliation when he signed up to race for the position. He had stated that he belonged to the Democratic Party at the time of paperwork filing on the fourth of January. The event will be held on March 24. The seat was left vacant as Tiffany Case, the judge, resigned to join the 4th Circuit Court of Appeal in the state.
Not a Democrat
Other than Duplantier, the other three candidates are Richard Perque, Taetrece Harrison, and Ellen Hazeur. They have all signed up to compete for Division A seat which was left vacant by the previous holder of the post. All of them are Democrats.
According to the lawsuit brought about by Timon Webre and Marie Breaux, both residents of New Orleans, Duplantier, a non-Democrat, is in reality, a Republican, as registered on the certified records. These records are kept by the office of Secretary of State. This is important as the laws in the State clearly mentions that candidates must report the party registration correctly. If this is not done, then the candidates will be disqualified. Attorneys Larry Centola and Scott Bickford prepared the lawsuit. They assert that Duplantier did not do that and thus must be removed from the ballot.
Response to allegations
Duplantier had a ready response to the allegation. He said that he remembers changing his party affiliation to Democrat many years before. He also claimed to have voted in the presidential primaries of the party. He said, however, he was not sure. The candidate said that if he knew that he continued to be a Republican, the status would have been changed by him a long time ago. He said that he believed that the qualifying paperwork said the truth. He added that he always thought of himself as a Democrat.
Suits like these are quite common. Private citizens, seemingly without any political ties, file such legal cases. The reality is that those who file cases do so at the behest of one of the competing candidates. The lawyers said they have no idea which candidate their client is supporting in the open race.