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AZ Democratic Party sues to block No Labels from the 2024 ballot

The Arizona Democratic Party is trying to block No Labels, a moderate political organization, from appearing on the 2024 ballot.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday morning in Maricopa County Superior Court, attorneys for the state Democratic Party argue that No Labels is nothing more than a nonprofit corporation, not a political party registered with the federal government. That means No Labels has failed to comply with standard federal requirements for political parties, like disclosing donors.

“No Labels is not following the rules for political party recognition, while attempting to be placed on the ballot alongside actual, functioning political parties who do,” said Morgan Dick, executive director for the Arizona Democratic Party. “Arizonans deserve better and voters deserve to know who is behind this shadowy organization and what potentially nefarious agenda they are pushing.” 

The lawsuit also claims that No Labels organizers violated state law while collecting signatures to qualify for the 2024 ballot by signing affidavits verifying the validity of petitions long before it actually collected signatures on those petitions. Because of that error, the secretary of state should’ve disqualified the signatures, the lawsuit states.

The legal challenge comes amid a national effort by No Labels and others to qualify for the 2024 ballot, chiefly to run alternative third-party candidates for president. Some Democrats fear a third party could spoil the chances of President Biden winning reelection.

An attorney for No Labels told the Washington Post he was confident the court will uphold the organization's certification.

So far, No Labels has qualified for the ballot in three other states: Oregon, Alaska and Colorado.

Ben Giles is a senior editor at KJZZ.