Appeals Court Upholds Law Barring Party ID for Local Races

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A federal appeals court has upheld a Virginia law allowing only federal, statewide and General Assembly candidates to be identified by party affiliation on the ballot.

The Powhatan County Republican Committee sued the Virginia State board of Elections over the law in 2015, arguing that it was unfair that candidates for local offices can’t be identified on the ballot as Republicans, Democrats or other parties.

But a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday unanimously upheld a decision from a lower court, which found the state’s law to be constitutional.

The appeals court said Virginia officials have important reasons for keeping political affiliation off local ballots, including “minimizing partisanship at the local government level.”

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