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First Amendment Library:
Robert J. Castellani


Under Georgia law a candidate for elective public office who does not enter and win a political party's primary election can have his name printed on the ballot at the general election only if he has filed a nominating petition signed by at least 5% of the number of registered voters at the last general election for the office in question.[1] Georgia law also provides that a candidate for elective public office must pay a filing fee equal to 5% of the annual salary of the office he is seeking.[2] This litigation arose when the appellants, who were prospective candidates and registered voters,[3] filed a class action in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, attacking the constitutionality of these provisions of the Georgia Election Code, and seeking declaratory and injunctive relief.