Libertarian candidate joins crowd in Louisville congressional race

06/23/2010 05:07 PM

(WITH VIDEO) FRANKFORT — Ed Martin, a small businessman who lives in Louisville, filed more than the necessary 400 signatures with the Secretary of State’s office to get his name on the already crowded ballot for the the 3rd Congressional District.

Martin is trying for a second time to run for that seat as a Libertarian Party candidate. In 2008, the Republicans challenged in court Martin’s attempted candidacy as a Libertarian candidate in the 3rd district race because he was officially registered as a Republican at the time.

But with a change in party official, Martin cleared the state’s required 400-signature threshold for a minor party candidate on Wednesday and officially kicked off his campaign.

In an interview with cn|2 Politics, Martin said he would run on many of the same ideas he had in 2008. When asked if he would court the tea party movement, which is typically known for Libertarian-like views of smaller government, Martin said it’s “up to them.”

In addition to Democrat incumbent John Yarmuth and Republican challenger Todd Lally, Michael Hansen is running as an independent candidate in the general election race.

Yamurth’s campaign declined to comment on Martin entering the race. And unlike 2008, this time the Republican’s campaign welcomed Martin.

“At this critical junction in our country’s history, we need people with great ideas and we want to welcome Mr. Martin to the race,” said Jay Hill, Lally’s campaign manager. “Because in the long run this race is about Americas future and we need all the idea we can get.”

But Martin could siphon votes away some votes from the conservative Republican who is often aligned with the Louisville Tea Party.

An e-mail sent to the Louisville Tea Party was not returned.

- Reporting by Kenny Colston, video produced by Holly Thompson

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