Louisiana judge dismisses Landrieu case on (mostly) right basis

A Louisiana judge has dismissed a claim that Senator Mary Landrieu was not an "inhabitant" of Louisiana and therefore ineligible to appear on the ballot. I recently published an editorial on the subject in the New Orleans Times-Picayune on this subject.

The judge got the first point right, which I noted in the editorial (and in my forthcoming Indiana Law Journal piece, Scrutinizing Federal Electoral Qualifications). That is, we don't know if Ms. Landrieu is an "inhabitant" until election day, because the Constitution only requires a candidate be an inhabitant "when elected."

But the judge went on, according to the New York Times, "The court would only welcome a challenge, he said, if and when Ms. Landrieu was re-elected on Nov. 4."

That, as I argue, is not the right result. At that point, the matter would be left to Congress. Granted, the case would not longer be premature, which was the basis for this court's original finding. But if a case is filed after (and if) she's re-elected, the case should also be dismissed.