Candidate David Bellavia did not qualify for the May 24 special election ballot, New York officials said Friday.
Tom Connolly, a spokesman for the New York Board of Elections, told Roll Call that the commissioners voted 4-0 to deny Bellavia a spot on the ballot because he did not submit a relatively standard form known as the acceptance certificate. There had been questions about whether he had enough signatures from district voters, with Republican nominee Jane Corwin challenging them last week.
Bellavia did not fight the board action and had submitted a letter “acknowledging he was late with the form and would have had less than the number of required signatures,” according to Connolly.
The ballot will include Corwin on the Republican, Conservative and Independence lines, Democratic nominee Kathy Hochul on the Democratic and Working Family lines, Ian Murphy on the Green Party line and Jack Davis under the last line on the ballot: Tea Party.
To get on the ballot without an official endorsement by an existing party, candidates needed to gather at least 3,500 signatures from voters in the district in just 12 days.
The exclusion of Bellavia is considered a win for Corwin. While longshot candidate Davis will fight to siphon some of the conservative vote, Bellavia, an Iraq war veteran and author, was largely considered the ideological favorite of many tea party activists. Davis previously ran for Congress as a Democrat.
In a release announcing he’d made the ballot after collecting more than 12,000 signatures, the Davis campaign declared he is “the only candidate on the ballot to be nominated by voters,” adding, “The other candidates were hand-picked by party leaders behind closed doors.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.