It’s over. A judge has just ruled that Green Senate candidate Carl Romanelli is off the ballot in the Pennsylvania Senate race.
That strikes a deadly blow to Pennsylvania Republicans’ gambit to draw votes away from Democrat Bob Casey by fielding a Green candidate. As we reported earlier, all of Romanelli’s support was from conservative donors, and Sen. Rick Santorum’s (R-PA) volunteers worked hard gathering signatures to get Romanelli on the ballot. The Santorum campaign has admitted steering help toward the Romanelli campaign.
After Romanelli gathered almost 100,000 signatures to qualify, Democrats challenged the signatures’ validity. A court fight followed, and now a judge has found that the Greens are short almost 9,000 valid signatures from the 67,000 required by law.
Update: The Greens have one last hope — but it seems a long shot. The state supreme court has yet to rule on Romanelli’s bid to change the threshold of signatures required by the law. If Romanelli won that motion, then he would only need about 16,000 signatures. But for now, Romanelli’s off the ballot and would have to appeal to get back on.