If the state Legislature has its way, the 52-year-old American Independent Party is going to need to find a new name, and it’s going to need to do it in a hurry.
A bill on Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk would bar any political party from using “independent” in its name and, not coincidentally, give the American Independent Party, the largest of the state’s four minor parties, little more than a month either to change its name or be ousted from the California primary ballot in March.
If Newsom signs the bill, it will spark a court battle about just what rules California can put on a political party, especially when the rules are set by the competing political parties that run the Legislature.
“We have an attorney and as soon as the governor signs it, we’ll be in court the same day,” said Mark Seidenberg, California vice-chair of the American Independent Party.