Case: Jorgensen v. Dunlap

1:20-cv-00272 | U.S. District Court for the District of Maine

Filed Date: July 31, 2020

Closed Date: Aug. 10, 2020

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On July 31, 2020, a candidate for United States President from the Libertarian Party of Maine, filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine, seeking to challenge Maine's petition signature requirements for independent candidates found at 21-A M.R.S. §§ 353 and 354(5)(A), which had become more challenging to meet due to COVID-19 restrictions. Suing under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, the plaintiff sued the Secretary of State of Maine, alleging violations of her First and Fourteent…

On July 31, 2020, a candidate for United States President from the Libertarian Party of Maine, filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine, seeking to challenge Maine's petition signature requirements for independent candidates found at 21-A M.R.S. §§ 353 and 354(5)(A), which had become more challenging to meet due to COVID-19 restrictions. Suing under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, the plaintiff sued the Secretary of State of Maine, alleging violations of her First and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Specifically, the plaintiff claimed the petition signature requirements violated her right to freedom of speech and association, equal protection, and due process, particularly because the COVID-19 restrictions on in-person gatherings had made it impracticable to obtain the signatures required, thus the requirements were overly broad and not narrowly tailored. The plaintiff sought injunctive relief, including a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction and ultimately a permanent injunction to enjoin the defendant and require the petition signature requirement to be lowered from 4,000 to 2,000; the plaintiff also sought declaratory relief that 21-A M.R.S. §§ 353 and 354(5)(A) violated the First and Fourteenth Amendment as applied to independent candidates as to the November 2020 election, and the plaintiff sought attorney's fees. The case was assigned to Judge Nancy Torresen.

That same day, the plaintiff filed an emergency motion for injunctive relief, formally requesting the relief discussed in the complaint related to a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to reduce the statutorily-imposed signature requirements for the election from 4,000 to 2,000.

After a hearing on August 3, 2020, the court requested the defendant to determine if the plaintiff had qualified for the general election based on the nominating petition she submitted. The defendant filed a notice to the court on August 10 that the plaintiff had submitted a petition with a sufficient number of valid signatures to qualify her for the ballot. That same day, the plaintiff filed a notice of voluntary dismissal and the case is closed.

 

Summary Authors

Caitlin Kierum (4/29/2022)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/17405895/parties/jorgensen-v-dunlap/


Judge(s)

Rich, John H. III (Maine)

Torresen, Nancy (Maine)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Barnes, Robert E (Tennessee)

Mahany, Brian (Wisconsin)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Gardiner, Phyllis (Maine)

Knowlton, Thomas A (Maine)

Judge(s)

Rich, John H. III (Maine)

Torresen, Nancy (Maine)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Barnes, Robert E (Tennessee)

Mahany, Brian (Wisconsin)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Gardiner, Phyllis (Maine)

Knowlton, Thomas A (Maine)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Aug. 10, 2020 Docket
1

Complaint for Injunctive, Declaratory, and Other Relief

July 31, 2020 Complaint
14

Notice of Dismissal Pursuant to F.R.C.P 41(a)(1)

Aug. 10, 2020 Pleading / Motion / Brief

Resources

Title Description External URL

Jorgensen v. Dunlap

COVID-Related Election Litigation Tracker

Plaintiff is the Libertarian Party of Maine candidate for U.S. President in the Nov. 2020 election and seeks to challenge the Maine's petition signature requirements for independent candidates in lig… Sept. 5, 2020 https://healthyelections-case-tracker.stanford.edu/detail?id=172

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/17405895/jorgensen-v-dunlap/

Last updated May 20, 2022, 5:29 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

COMPLAINT against MATTHEW DUNLAP PAYMENT OF FILING FEE DUE WITHIN 48 HOURS. IF FILING FEE IS BEING PAID WITH A CREDIT CARD COUNSEL ARE INSTRUCTED TO LOGIN TO CMECF AND DOCKET Case Opening Filing Fee Paid FOUND IN THE Complaints and Other Initiating Documents CATEGORY. CHECK PAYMENTS DUE WITHIN 48 HOURS., filed by JO JORGENSEN. (Service of Process Deadline 10/29/2020) Fee due by 8/3/2020. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1 - Proclamation, # 2 Exhibit 2 - Executive Order dated March 18, 2020, # 3 Exhibit 3 - Executive order dated March 24, 2020, # 4 Exhibit 4 - Executive Order dated March 31, 2020, # 5 Exhibit 5 - Proclamation to Renew the State of Civil Emergency, # 6 Exhibit 6 - News Release dated June 5, 2020, # 7 7 - Information for Voters for July 14 Election)(bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

1 Exhibit 1 - Proclamation

View on PACER

2 Exhibit 2 - Executive Order dated March 18, 2020

View on PACER

3 Exhibit 3 - Executive order dated March 24, 2020

View on PACER

4 Exhibit 4 - Executive Order dated March 31, 2020

View on PACER

5 Exhibit 5 - Proclamation to Renew the State of Civil Emergency

View on PACER

6 Exhibit 6 - News Release dated June 5, 2020

View on PACER

7 7 - Information for Voters for July 14 Election

View on PACER

July 31, 2020 RECAP
2

CIVIL COVER SHEET. (bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
3

DECLARATION of Christopher Thrasher re 1 Complaint, filed by JO JORGENSEN. (bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
4

DECLARATION of James Tracey re 1 Complaint, filed by JO JORGENSEN. (bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
5

MOTION for Expedited Hearing, MOTION for Preliminary Injunction, MOTION for Temporary Restraining Order by JO JORGENSEN (bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 RECAP
6

Summons Issued as to MATTHEW DUNLAP. Counsel shall print the embossed summons and effect service in the manner in accordance with Fed.R.Civ.P.4. Note-If you are using Version 6 of Adobe Acrobat, be sure the PRINT WHAT field is set to DOCUMENTS AND COMMENTS (Click File, then Print to check this setting). (bfa) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
7

CERTIFICATION for Admission Pro Hac Vice of Robert E. Barnes filed by BRIAN H. MAHANY on behalf of JO JORGENSEN (Total admission fee $ 100 receipt number AMEDC-2284679.) The District of Maine is a CM/ECF NextGen Court. If PHV counsel has not previously been granted electronic filing rights with the District of Maine, PHV counsel will now need to submit a PRO HAC VICE request in this District via PACER at www.pacer.gov (MAHANY, BRIAN) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
8

NOTICE of Hearing: Telephone Conference set for 8/3/2020 11:00 AM before JUDGE NANCY TORRESEN. The parties have been provided with the call-in information.(jwr) (Entered: 07/31/2020)

July 31, 2020 PACER
9

NOTICE of Appearance by PHYLLIS GARDINER on behalf of MATTHEW DUNLAP (GARDINER, PHYLLIS) (Entered: 08/03/2020)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER
10

NOTICE of Appearance by THOMAS A. KNOWLTON on behalf of MATTHEW DUNLAP (KNOWLTON, THOMAS) (Entered: 08/03/2020)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER

Filing Fee Paid via Credit Card ( Filing fee $ 400 receipt number AMEDC-2285502.), filed by JO JORGENSEN.(BARNES, ROBERT)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER
11

Minute Entry for proceedings held before JUDGE NANCY TORRESEN. Telephone Conference held. (Court Reporter: Tammy Martell) (mnd) (Entered: 08/03/2020)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER

Reset Deadlines as to 5 MOTION for Preliminary Injunction : Pursuant to the schedule established during the 8/3/2020 Telephone Conference: Response due by 8/10/2020. Reply due by 8/11/2020. (mnd)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER
12

Motions terminated: 5 Motion for Expedited Hearing and 5 Motion for TRO terminated by the Clerk's Office following the 8/3/2020 Telephone Conference. As discussed during the Telephone Conference, this matter will proceed only on the Motion for Preliminary Injunction. (mnd) (Entered: 08/03/2020)

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER

Order on Motion for TRO AND Order on Motion for Miscellaneous Relief 1

Aug. 3, 2020 PACER
13

STATUS REPORT by MATTHEW DUNLAP. (Attachments: # 1 Candidate Letter and Receipt)(GARDINER, PHYLLIS) (Entered: 08/10/2020)

1 Candidate Letter and Receipt

View on PACER

Aug. 10, 2020 RECAP
14

Notice of Voluntary Dismissal by JO JORGENSEN (BARNES, ROBERT) (Entered: 08/10/2020)

Aug. 10, 2020 RECAP

State / Territory: Maine

Case Type(s):

Election/Voting Rights

Special Collection(s):

COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)

Healthy Elections COVID litigation tracker

Key Dates

Filing Date: July 31, 2020

Closing Date: Aug. 10, 2020

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

A candidate for United States President from the Libertarian Party of Maine

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Non-settlement Outcome

Outcome

Prevailing Party: None Yet / None

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Voting

Voting:

Candidate qualifications

Election administration