By Sheena Dooley | Iowa Watchdog
Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson scored another victory in the Hawkeye State Tuesday when a Polk County judge ruled his name should be on the November ballot.
Attorneys for Gloria Mazza and Dean Montgomery filed the case against Johnson Thursday in Polk County District Court. They asked the court to review an earlier decision made by a panel of three state officials to allow him on the ballot.
Judge Arthur Gamble ruled Tuesday the Libertarian followed proper procedures to get on the ballot. The decision expects to be appealed, although time is running out with ballots being printed later this week.
Democrat Attorney General Tom Miller, Republican Secretary of State Matt Schultz and Warren Jenkins, chief deputy auditor for Republican State Auditor David Vaudt, unanimously decided last week that Johnson’s name be included on the ballot.
Johnson’s candidacy could detract voters from Republican candidate Mitt Romney and Democrat President Obama, opponents say.
Mazza and Montgomery contend the Libertarians never held a caucus or convention to nominate Johnson, which is required under Iowa law. Libertarians say they caucused at the Iowa State Fair, where nearly 450 people from at least 25 counties signed the attendance list.
State officials on the panel sided with the Libertarian party, saying Iowa law was vague in its definition of what constitutes a caucus. State leaders have historically handled similar cases by making decisions that benefit voters, the three said in their ruling.