Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Murtha’s GOP opponent tossed off ballot

Johnstown Tribune-Democrat

Republican William Russell knew that he faced an uphill battle when he decided to challenge longtime Democratic U.S. Rep. John Murtha.

Now, Russell’s battle may have ended before a single vote has been cast.

A Commonwealth Court judge on Tuesday ruled that Russell does not have enough valid petition signatures to appear on the April 22 primary ballot.

Russell, a veteran of both Iraq wars who quit his Army job and moved to Johnstown to run against Murtha, said he will not appeal.

“I don’t have the resources to fight a protracted court battle,” the former Washington, D.C., resident said.

With no other Republicans filing to run in the 12th Congressional District, Russell still has a chance to win his party’s nomination.

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