Baton Rouge District Attorney Will Not File Legal Challenge to Landrieu's Candidacy
On Tuesday Hillar Moore III, District Attorney for the Parish of East Baton Rouge, said that his office would not file a legal action objecting to the candidacy of Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA).
In his "response to [the] complaint submitted by Col. Rob Maness regarding qualification of Mary Landrieu for U.S. Senate," Moore stated "no court action will be filed by the District Attorney's office."
"On Friday, August 29, 2014, at approximately 2:45 pm, Col. Rob Maness filed a complaint with the District Attorney's Office of the Nineteenth Judicial Court for the State of Louisiana," the response began. Moore noted that "the complaint asks 'that the District Attorney today file an action objecting to the candidacy of Mary Landrieu for the office of U.S. Senator, on the the grounds that she fails to meet statutorily required [residency] qualifications for office.'"
Moore also noted that "Col. Maness decided to bring his complaint to the District Attorney's Office instead of filing himself." Under the Louisiana Election Code, any registered voter can file an action in state court objecting to the candidacy of a qualified candidate, provided that action commences prior to the end of the seven-day window after the end of the qualifying period.
In his response, District Attorney Moore was emphatic that that seven-day window closed at 4:30 pm on Friday, August 29. "Likewise," he wrote, "La. R.S. 18:1405 A states:
An action objecting to candidacy shall be instituted not later than 4:30 pm of the seventh day after the close of qualifications for candidates in the primary election. After the expiration of the time period set forth in this Section, no further action shall be commenced objecting to candidacy based on the grounds for objections to candidacy contained in R.S. 18:492."
Moore reiterated his understanding of the law later in the day on Tuesday, when he told the New Orleans Times-Picayune, "[t]here is no question that Friday was the deadline."
Moore concluded in his response to Col. Maness that "the one hour and forty five-minute interval between delivery of the complaint and expiration of time to file a court action in this matter, if appropriate, provided inadequate time to assess the complaint."
Moore observed at the close of his response that "the issue of Senator Mary Landrieu's residency has been presented to the court. Former Senate challenger Paul Hollis filed suit on Friday August 29, 2014 in the Nineteenth Judicial Court, alleging that Senator Landrieu 'is in reality a full-time permanent inhabitant of the District of Columbia.' "
Breitbart News reported on Tuesday that Hollis's suit was filed two minutes after the filing deadline on Friday.