OMAHA (KPTM) -- A federal judge today heard opening arguments in a non-jury trial over Nebraska's residency rule for petition circulators.
The American Civil Liberties Union argues the law makes it difficult if not impossible for independent candidates and large-scale grassroots initiatives to get on the ballot.
Under Nebraska law, petition circulators must live in the state whether they are volunteers or paid professionals.
The ACLU is suing Nebraska Secretary John Gale.
Gale's attorneys in court argued the residency law for petition circulators prevents fraud and does not impose a burden on candidates trying to get on the ballot.
The ACLU is fighting on behalf of the Libertarian Party and Citizens in Charge, an activist group based in Virginia.
Judge Joseph F. Bataillion is presiding over the trial.