Republican US Rep. Doug Lamborn has fought off some tough primary challenges in his conservative Colorado district before. But this time, he might not even be on the ballot. The Colorado Supreme Court ruled Monday to kick the six-term congressman off the ballot because at least one of his petition gatherers wasn't a state resident, Politico reports. With those signatures invalidated, Lamborn doesn't qualify for the GOP primary ballot. Campaign attorney Ryan Call says Lamborn plans to file a federal appeal because "denying a sitting congressman the right to participate in a primary election where the residency of the circulator denies the otherwise valid petition signatures is unconstitutional."
Republican gubernatorial front-runner Walker Stapleton, the state treasurer, used the same signature-gathering firm as Lamborn and withdrew his name from the ballot earlier this month after admitting that his campaign had submitted fraudulent petitions. He later qualified through the party's convention vote. State Democrats welcomed Monday's court decision. Republicans like Stapleton and Lamborn "wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars bringing out-of-state fraudsters to Colorado to collect signatures that were eventually deemed worthless," says party spokesman Eric Walker, per the Washington Post. "If you can't be trusted to oversee a signature-gathering operation without committing fraud, why on earth should Coloradans trust you to hold elected office?" (Read more Doug Lamborn stories.)