STATEN ISLAND — A Democratic candidate in Staten Island's borough president race has taken the Board of Elections to court after an objection was filed over his petition to get on the ballot.
Richard Luthmann filed an order to show cause last week and his first hearing was on Monday. The BOE will make the reason for the objection known to Luthmann on Tuesday.
He believes it is a challenge to his attempt to get on the ticket which claimed not all of the nearly 3,000 signatures he gathered were valid.
Luthmann said he thinks the objection is designed to keep his name off of the ticket so party-backed candidate, Lou Liedy, can run unopposed for the Democratic nomination.
"It's not a big surprise they're trying to keep me off the ballot," Luthmann said. "They try at all costs to exclude me from party events, to cast me in a bad political light."
Luthmann said the objection was filed by a friend of John Gulino, chairman of the Staten Island Democratic party.
"We tried the best we could," Luthmann said about the validity of the signatures. "By in large, we believe we have well over the 2,000 that we need. It's an attempt to keep me off the ballot."
The Staten Island Democratic party did not want to comment for the story.
Luthmann said the Democratic party barred him from attending their "Boardwalk Bash Fund Raiser" last weekend and refused to take his money, the Staten Island Advance originally reported.
The Democratic party was irked by Luthmann when he sent a letter to opponent Liedy, who's 66 and has a prosthetic leg, asking whether he could psychically handle the election, the Advance reported.
A source inside the Democratic party said they welcome all contributors, even those who disagree with Gulino, but did not want to take money from Luthmann because of his comments about people with disabilities.
Luthmann said that he doesn't have any problems with people with disabilities.
"I deal with people with disabilities every day," he said. "It's really a political attempt for them to demonize me and it's dirty politics at its best."