With 48 office-seekers running in Arizona’s presidential preference election on Feb. 5, there’s certainly no shortage of candidates. Yet there are two notable omissions.
Neither Democrat Joe Biden nor Republican Tom Tancredo submitted the necessary paperwork by the state’s deadline on Monday, so neither national presidential candidate will appear on ballots in Arizona.
For Tancredo it’s academic; Fox News reported late Wednesday the Republican plans to drop out of the race.
Since there is no appeal process, it appears Biden is out of luck.
The Arizona ballots are set at 24 Democrats and Republicans apiece, spanning the alphabetical spectrum from Peter “Simon” Bollander to Sandy Whitehouse.
“All of the candidates that were able to meet the statutory deadline of Dec. 17 and filled out the paperwork accordingly are on the ballot,” said Kevin Tyne, spokesman for the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office.
He noted the state’s two-page form to get on the ballot is notoriously simple.
Most of the candidates on Arizona’s ballot are political pranksters with exactly zero chance of being elected president.
While it was easy to get on Arizona’s ballots before the deadline, it appears impossible to get on the ballots now.
“I suppose everything is subject to a court challenge of some sort, but I’m not aware of any appeal process in state statute, and state statute is pretty clear on the timeline,” Tyne said.
The Arizona Secretary of State’s Office contacted the national Democratic and Republican parties to advise them of the state’s deadline, Tyne said.
State officials were unaware Wednesday whether Biden’s and Tancredo’s campaigns accidentally overlooked Arizona or if they made strategic decisions to skip the state.
Calls by the Tribune to Biden’s and Tancredo’s national campaign headquarters seeking comment were not immediately returned Wednesday.
Biden is a sixth-term U.S. senator from Delaware. Tancredo is a fifth-term U.S. representative from Colorado.
Neither has gained much traction in Arizona anyway.
Biden attracted less than 1 percent support among Democrat heads of households in a Rocky Mountain Poll that was conducted Nov. 12-15. The pollsters didn’t include Tancredo in a list of runners read to Republican heads of households, so he got no support.