BOSTON – In a court appearance today, Massachusetts Republican Party attorney Lou Ciavarra told a Superior Court Justice the party will certify Mark Fisher’s name to the Secretary of the Commonwealth regardless of whether or not a settlement is reached with Mr. Fisher. Ciavarra explained to the court that an executive committee meeting of the State Party will take place this weekend, via telephone, where it is expected that a vote will affirm placing Fisher’s name on the ballot, contingent upon Fisher filing 10,000 certified signatures.
Fisher’s attorney Tom Harvey told the judge that Mr. Fisher has confirmed to him that there are 10,000 signatures available. It is increasingly looking like Mr. Fisher will be on the ballot for the September primary.
“Charlie welcomes Mr. Fisher to the race,” said Baker spokesman Tim Buckley, “and looks forward to demonstrating that he is the only candidate, Democrat or Republican, with the experience necessary to lead state government, and the values that are consistent with Massachusetts voters. The people of Massachusetts deserve a leader focused on creating jobs, improving our schools and making our communities great. Charlie is grateful for all the support his campaign has received from people looking for a new direction to make Massachusetts a great place to live.”
When the court is in receipt of an affidavit showing that the Republican Party has followed through on this pledge, the court will cancel the June 16th start date of any trial.
The judge also repeatedly stressed that he will separate political discussions from the case. Saying, “I don’t think it is the court’s role to get involved in the politics of this situation.” He said that what happens politically should stay out of his courtroom, and that he is only going to rule on the facts of law in this case.
When Fisher’s attorney tried to stress that he needs the tally sheets to see if there was any criminal activity. The judge quickly admonished Mr. Harvey that the court never suggested that criminal activity took place and that would need to be proved.
The GOP’s attorney warned the court that discovery should not be used for a “fishing expedition”. The court agreed that Mr. Fisher’s attorney would have to amend his complaint to show that there is some reason to believe this occurred.
In a post hearing press availability, Mr. Fisher’s attorney said that he is “semi-satisfied” with the results of today’s hearing. Saying that he is pleased that Mr. Fisher will have ballot access, but also stressed that there are damages owed his client by the seven week delay of certification of Mr. Fisher. Mr. Harvey also said that Fisher has no choice but to accept being placed on the ballot at this point, without a settlement on damages.
The judge has invited Mr. Fisher’s attorneys to amend his complaint regarding damages, because the current complaint does not outline what those damages are.
The next step is the stay of the trial start date upon court receipt of an affidavit showing that Mr. Fisher has been certified by the Republican Party to be on the ballot. When asked if Mr. Fisher was satisfied with being on the ballot without a settlement, his attorney said, “that is now out of our hands.”