In Nebraska the Green Party, Libertarian Party, and Nebraska Party have all been notified that they are no longer recognized parties in Nebraska. Letters have been sent to all registered voters in those parties that their registrations will be changed to unaffiliated.
What was the crime of these three parties? None of them earned over 5% of the vote in the 2008 election for U.S. Senate.
“I don’t think five percent should be a criteria to recognize these parties.”
University of Nebraska-Omaha political science professor Greg Petrow says the third party plays a crucial role.
“It’s unlikely in any given election that a third party will get five percent of the votes or more, but that doesn’t mean third parties are useless. They highlight and discuss the issues the two major parties are ignoring,” he said.
Green party member, Dr. Frances Mendenhall is understandably frustrated.
“The problem is, the state of Nebraska has some very unenlightened ways of managing third parties, and we think they’re wrong,” she said.
Mendenhall plans to fight for her rights.
“I think the time of the green party is now, and like Kermit the frog said, ‘it’s not easy being green.'”
About 11,000 Nebraskans were registered as members of one of the three parties. Now, in order to get future candidate’s names on the ballots, each party much collect over 5,000 signatures from voters across the state.
3rd party is over in Nebraska Omaha World-Herald