UPDATE: W.Va. Officials Won't Appeal 'Rescue' Fund Ruling

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

UPDATE 9/25/12 @ 5:15 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia election officials aren't appealing the recent ruling against the Supreme Court candidate public financing program.

The State Election Commission unanimously decided Tuesday not to petition the U.S. Supreme Court.

The state Supreme Court ruled earlier this month that court candidate Allen Loughry could not receive rescue funds.

Loughry was the sole candidate receiving public funding through a pilot program. That program included rescue funds meant to help Loughry from being outspent.

But this month's ruling concluded that federal courts have declared such matching funding provisions unconstitutional.

The commission had deadlocked over releasing the funds to Loughry. That prompted Loughry to sue. But the commission also sought to defend rescue funding as constitutional in Loughry's case.

Loughry can now raise private funds outside of the program.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- A potential Democratic donor cannot join a West Virginia Supreme Court case arising from the state's public financing program.

A Wednesday order denies a request by Mike Callaghan to intervene in the petition filed by Republican Supreme Court candidate Allen Loughry.

A pilot program has provided Loughry public funds in lieu of traditional campaign cash. The longtime Supreme Court law clerk has petitioned for the release of additional funds meant to help him from being outspent in the two-seat race.

The State Election Commission has balked at releasing these rescue funds. Federal rulings have blocked similar funding in other states.

Loughry argued that Callaghan has no constitutional rights affected in the case. Callaghan says the prospect of rescue funds chills his right to contribute to Loughry's Democratic opponents.

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