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Judge rejects North Dakota group’s call for online petition signatures

State News
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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A federal judge says he will not waive North Dakota’s ban on electronic signature gathering for a group attempting to get a wide-ranging measure on the November ballot.

North Dakota Voters First asked to allow online signature gathering because of the coronavirus pandemic. The group argued that the COVID-19 outbreak “creates an environment that is impossible to comply” with the laws.

In denying a motion for a preliminary injunction, U.S. District Judge Peter Welte noted that the state did not issue a stay-at-home order and Gov. Doug Burgum on May 1 “revoked nearly all the previously imposed pandemic-related restrictions.”

North Dakota Voters First faces a July 6 deadline to submit at least 26,904 signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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