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June 13, 2008
Contact: Don Cookson

Secretary of State Schedules Hearing Regarding Challenge to Nominating Petition Filing

Augusta- The office of the Secretary of State will hold a hearing for the purpose of receiving evidence regarding a challenge to nominating petitions which were submitted to that office by Herbert Hoffman of Ogunquit. Hoffman submitted the signatures in an effort to have his name placed on statewide ballots as a candidate for the office of U.S. Senate. Upon submission, the Bureau of Elections conducted a review and determined the petitions contained 4,112 valid signatures, 112 more than the 4,000 required by state law for placement of Hoffman’s name on statewide ballots.

The nominating petitions Hoffman submitted have been challenged by John Knutson of Brooklin, Maine. Knutson alleges a certain number of signatures approved by the Secretary of State are invalid, and that the number of signatures in question would be sufficient to disallow Hoffman’s bid to appear on the statewide ballot as a U.S. Senate candidate in November’s general election.

The hearing is Knutson’s opportunity to present evidence to support his claims. Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has appointed Deputy Secretary of State Julie Flynn to preside as Hearing Officer. Flynn will submit a report on the hearing to Secretary Dunlap, who makes the final ruling as to whether or not the challenge shall be upheld. The hearing is scheduled for Monday, June 16, at 10:00 AM in Room 206 of the Cross Office Building in Augusta.