Libertarians Have Just Five Days to Pick Replacement After Mike Fellows’ Death
While Montana mourns the loss of U.S. house candidate Mike Fellows, the Libertarian Party is suffering with not only the loss of a major candidate, but with the loss of its state chairman as well. Chairman of the Libertarian National Committee Nicholas Sarwark explains.
"I have known Mike Fellows personally, the entire time that I have been active in the Libertarian Party, since 1999. It's my understanding he's our longest serving state chairman, having been state chair of the Montana Libertarian Party, I believe, for over 25 years. He's run for office multiple times and he was really the diving force behind
The Montana Secretary of State’s office has given the Libertarian party just five days to pick a replacement candidate for Fellows, but that will be difficult since that process would be something the state chair would participate in.
"It is actually up to the state party in Montana and that is a little logistically tricky as Mike was the state chair," Sarwark said. "We are working with other big party activists in the Montana Libertarian Party to figure out what the next steps are and we will do what we can to get a candidate elected to take Mike's place."
Sarwark says that Fellows would have wanted to see a libertarian candidate on the November ballot and that they will work hard to find a replacement before the deadline next Monday. Montana Secretary of State Linda McCulloch said the law on how to handle this type of situation is vague.
"We have looked through the laws and the statutes are, rightly so, not real clear about this, but it gave us some options to choose," said McCulloch. "Then we are going to meet with our election advisory committee which is made up of county election administrators."
Ballots for the November election have already been printed and are supposed to be mailed out to military and overseas electors by this Friday. It is unclear at this point if it will be possible to replace Mike Fellows name on Montana Ballots.