Longshot congressional candidate Robby Starbuck this week was ordered re-inserted onto the ballot of the Tennessee GOP primary ballot from which he’d been removed, a move that keeps him in the running for the state’s Republican primary election in August and its general election in November.
The Tennessee Republican Party had initially voted to bar Starbuck from the ballot in a closed meeting, with GOP leaders in that state claiming that he did not possess the party bona fides necessary to appear on the primary ballot.
The Davidson County Chancery Court on Friday ruled that Starbuck should be re-instated, claiming that the Tennessee GOP violated the state’s Open Meetings Act in its closed-door meeting to boot him off the ballot.
“During a call with Mr. Starbuck in March, the [Tennessee Republican Party] first indicated its meeting to decide the merits of the complaint against him (which would eventually take place on April 19, 2022) would be public,” the court noted. “However, just days before the April 19 meeting, the TRP informed Mr. Starbuck he could participate by Zoom – but it would not be a public meeting.”
“And, in fact, within 24 hours of that meeting, the TRP informed Mr. Starbuck that his representatives could not join him if he attended,” the ruling continued. “And, ultimately, on the day of the meeting, the TRP told him he could not participate, either.”
Starbuck in announcing the win declared himself “almost speechless.”
“I can’t thank the Judge enough for having a judicial compass that pointed him toward justice for the people in our case,” he said in a statement, adding that “the one thing the establishment did succeed in was wasting our time and money[.]”
Tennessee’s GOP primary will be held on Aug. 4, while its general election will be held on Nov. 8.