Does an Unqualified But Losing Candidacy Upset an Election?
(2015) 14(4) Election Law Journal 424-429
Posted: 21 Apr 2016 Last revised: 21 Jul 2018
Date Written: April 18, 2015
All electoral systems erect qualifications and disqualifications for would-be candidates. An unqualified candidate cannot be duly elected. But what is — or should be — the effect on an elective race of an unqualified losing candidate appearing on the ballot? This commentary examines the law and policy on point, to conclude that only in limited circumstances could an election be argued to be void because of a losing candidate being found to be unqualified. Those circumstances would be where first-past-the-post voting is used and the loser's vote tally well exceeded the winning margin. In any event, it is a point that legislators everywhere would do well to clarify.
JEL Classification: K00
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation