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Kauai candidate should have been disqualified, court rules

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State election officials should not have allowed a Republican candidate to run in the 2010 election for a Kauai seat in the state House, the state appeals court ruled today.

Harry Williams filed his nomination papers for the 14th District seat, which covers Hanalei and Kapaa, two days after the July 20 deadline.

State election officials had allowed him to file late after Republican candidate David Hamman withdrew from the House race on July 19.

The officials told the Republican Party it had three days after the deadline to find a replacement candidate.

The Kauai Democratic Party filed a complaint seeking to declare Williams’ candidacy void, but Circuit Judge Randal Valenciano dismissed the complaint.

Democratic State Rep. Hermina Morita defeated Williams in the general election.

In the 10-page ruling today, a three-member panel of the Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals held that Hamman’s nomination papers were “void” because it wasn’t complete and should never have been accepted.

As a result, state laws allowing for replacements did not apply and election officials had no authority to give the Republican Party additional days to find a replacement candidate, the court said.

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