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Challenge to Ron Corbett's candidacy upheld, will be left off primary ballot

Ron Corbett, Republican candidate for governor of Iowa. (CBS2/FOX28)
Ron Corbett, Republican candidate for governor of Iowa. (CBS2/FOX28)
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Former Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett will be left off the ballot for the Republican gubernatorial primary in June, after a panel of state officials found he failed to have enough signatures to qualify.

A review board upheld a challenge to his candidacy in a review meeting.

The challenge to Corbett’s candidacy was filed by Craig Robinson, a writer for The Iowa Republican, a conservative blog. Robinson says he acquired copies of Corbett's campaign petitions, and says Corbett submitted 4,088 signatures, just 83 above the required threshold to be put on the ballot. Robinson claims that 103 of the signatures are duplicates, which would leave him with 3,985 signatures.

Corbett initially called the accusations “bogus.”

The review board found Corbett was eight short of the 4,005 signatures required by state law after a review of some disputed signatures.

His attorneys fought for signatures originally crossed off to be reconsidered. They argued the campaign crossed out names they thought were in the wrong county when they were in the right one.

But Secretary of Paul Pate said that argument didn't hold up.

“From the past rulings we’ve done a crossed off signature is a crossed off signature it wasn’t counted," said Pate.

The Panel voted 2-1 to uphold the challenge to Corbett's candidacy, meaning Governor Kim Reynolds will no longer face a challenger in the Republican primary. Secretary of State Paul Pate was joined by Auditor Mary Mosiman, both Republicans, in the decision. Attorney General Tom Miller, a Democrat, voted against the objection.

Corbett said in an interview after the decision that he is not interested in challenging the decision in court.

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Six Democrats are still vying for their party's nomination; the primary is set for June 5.

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