Court Dismisses Suit Challenging Obama Nomination

On June 29th, the Circuit Court in Leon County dismissed with prejudice an election contest complaint challenging the qualifications of Barack Obama to receive his party’s nomination for President.  The plaintiff’s challenge was based upon an allegation that President Obama was not a “natural-born citizen” within the meaning of Article II, Section 1 of the United States Constitution.  The court based its order in part on the inapplicability of the election contest statute, Fla. Stat. 102.168, to nominations for the Office of the President of the United States.  The court also concluded that the plaintiff’s allegation that Obama was not a natural-born citizen because his father was a citizen of the UK was without merit.  The court left open the possibility, however, that the “[p]laintiff could perhaps contest the election if the candidate is successful”.

Thomas D. Shults, Esq.

About Thomas D. Shults, Esq.

Tom Shults is a Florida Bar Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer. He has represented clients in election and sunshine law issues, complex business and commercial disputes and probate and trust suits. He was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1983 and has maintained an active trial practice in state and federal courts for over 35 years. Mr. Shults successfully represented the Sarasota Alliance for Fair Elections in Sarasota Alliance for Fair Elections et al. v. Browning et al. , where the Florida Supreme Court ruled on the constitutionality of Sarasota County’s charter election law amendments. Mr. Shults has served on the Professional Ethics Committee of The Florida Bar and is the past Chairman of the Code and Rules of Evidence Committee of The Florida Bar. He is a recipient of the Distinguished Community Service Award of the Sarasota County Bar Association for his work with the Sarasota Mental Health Community Centers. In 2013 he was nominated for circuit court judge by the 12th Circuit Judicial Nominating Committee. Mr. Shults has served on the faculty of the Kessler-Eidson Program for Trial Techniques at Emory University School of Law and on the faculty of the National Institute for Trial Advocacy Program for Practicing Lawyers at Nova Southeastern University School of Law. Mr. Shults grew up in St. Petersburg, Florida and is a graduate of St. Petersburg High School (1973), Florida State University (B.S. 1977) and Washburn University School of Law (J.D. cum laude 1982). He is veteran of the United States Army.
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