Filing Candidate Nomination Papers As An Independent or a Representative of a Minor Party

In Matter of Gaines, 720 A.2d 159 (Pa. Cmwlth.), affirmed, 553 Pa. 139, 718 A.2d 296 (1998), the candidate had previously filed a nomination petition in the primary election as a candidate for the Democratic Party. Challenges were made based on insufficient signatures and the petition was set aside. The candidate again filed nomination papers, this time seeking to appear on the ballot in the General Election as a candidate for the "Gaines for Change" political party. When a challenge was made to the petition because the candidate had previously been precluded from filing nomination papers in the primary election, the Court held that because his name never appeared on the ballot and was not considered by the voters at the primary elections, the candidate should not be prevented from subsequently filing nomination papers as an independent or a representative of a minor party. The Court relied upon Section 951(e) of the Election Code, 25 P.S. 2911, which provides: There shall be appended to each nomination paper offered for filing an affidavit of each candidate nominated therein, stating - (5) that his name has not been presented as a candidate by nomination petitions for any public office to be voted for at the ensuing primary election, nor has he been nominated by any other nomination papers filed for any such office. Gaines was a Section 951 case involving what "presented" as a candidate meant, any discussion regarding Section 976 was merely dicta. The cases it relied on, however, Packrall v. Quail, 411 Pa. 555, 192 A.2d 704 (1963), and Baronett v. Tucker, 26 Pa. Commw. 559, 365 A.2d 179 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1976),