Utah Democratic Party statement following federal judge’s ruling in UDP v. Henderson

Last week, the Utah Democratic Party officially filed a lawsuit in federal court, asking a judge to issue an injunction requiring the Lieutenant Governor’s office to remove Joel Ferry from the ballot in House District 1 due to his ineligibility to serve. 

On Monday, Judge Parrish decided to not rule on the Utah Constitution and Utah law, deferring to her former colleagues in the Utah Supreme Court. Yesterday, after oral arguments, she decided not to enjoin the LG from sending out ballots to overseas military voters in House District 1 based on the federal constitution. 

“We are not giving up fighting for the rights of voters in HD-1 to choose their own representative instead of having their legislator picked by a small group of party insiders,” said party Chair Diane Lewis. “That means the next step is to take our case to the Utah Supreme Court, asking them to rule on the LG’s decision to certify Mr. Ferry as being qualified for the general election ballot when he is clearly not, and Mr. Ferry’s violation of the separation of powers provisions in the Utah Constitution.” 

“We hope to see this issue resolved as quickly as possible. Simply put, Joel Ferry and the Republican Party are attempting to fundamentally disenfranchise the people of District 1, and we deserve better than that.” said Joshua Hardy, the Democratic candidate for HD-1. “Our state is not ruled by one party, but by our Constitution and the rule of law, and that is what we are fighting for.”