Two Democrats in Florida are suing to block Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) from running in the state’s March 17 presidential primary because he’s a declared independent. According to Politico, Tallahassee Democrats Frank Bach and George Brown are also seeking to block officials from counting any votes Sanders has already received—as over 244,000 Florida Democrats have already submitted their votes via mail. “Florida is a closed primary state, yet here we have someone who is an independent on the Democratic ballot,” said Karen Gievers, Bach's wife and lawyer for her husband and Brown. “You can’t be an independent and be a member of the party.” The Vermont senator has listed himself as an independent, but caucuses with Democrats on Capitol Hill.
The executive director of the Florida Democratic Party, Juan Penalosa, called the lawsuit “ridiculous” as the party's executive committee “voted unanimously to place Senator Sanders on the Florida ballot.” A regional press secretary for Sanders said the “spurious complaint” would not affect them. “Bernie will be on the ballot in Florida,” the campaign said.