- Associated Press - Friday, January 20, 2017

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The Ohio Supreme Court has sided with the state elections chief in a dispute over Libertarians’ party status in the bellwether state.

In a 6-1 decision Friday, justices rejected the party’s claim that its presidential nominee Gary Johnson secured more than the 3 percent of the vote in November necessary to qualify the Libertarians as an official party under Ohio law.

Secretary of State Jon Husted (HYOO’-sted) refused to recognize the Libertarians as an official political party. He discounted Johnson’s Election Day showing because Johnson ran as an independent, not a Libertarian. Justices agreed Husted acted within his authority.

Party designation makes it easier for a party’s future candidates to run for office.

Justice William O’Neill, the high court’s lone Democrat, dissented in Friday’s decision.

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