Now that Corpus Christi Republican Congressman Blake Farenthold has announced he will not seek re-election next year due to allegations of sexual harassment and abuse of his staffers, the Texas Republican Party is suing to keep Farenthold's name off the March primary ballot, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
The problem is...Farenthold's announcement came four days after the deadline to file for a place on the March primary ballot.
The lawsuit, which was filed in federal district court, says while state law is clear about the deadline to file to be on the ballot, it is vague on when a name can be removed from the ballot.
"The Election Code does not specify a deadline by which Chairman Dickey is required to make this certification to the Secretary of State; rather, the statute provides that “[t]he secretary of state may by rule prescribe a deadline by which the state chair must deliver the chair’s submission regarding a candidate to the secretary of state. . ..” Tex. Elec. Code § 172.029(c). 19," the lawsuit states.
The Republicans say forcing them to associate the party with Farenthold would violate the party's First Amendment Constitutional right to 'free association.'
Four other Republicans will be on the ballot, but, unless Farethold's name is removed, the Republicans would be faced with the possibility of having their Congressional nominee be somebody who has stated he does not want to job, leading to a gold mine for Texas Democrats who hope to regain the seat that Farenthold won from the Democrats in 2012.
PHOTO' BLAKE FARENTHOLD