The Conyers Fiasco « Commentary Magazine:
"The supposed purpose of nominating petitions is to make sure that only genuine, politically viable candidates get onto the ballot, not guys wearing Uncle Sam suits.
That is a legitimate concern.
But the actual purpose of the nominating petition process is to make it harder for political insurgents to challenge the political establishment, which has the resources (and lawyers) to deal with the system.
A far better, cheaper, fairer means of ensuring only serious candidates are on the ballot is the British system, which is also widely used in Commonwealth countries and in Japan.
In Britain, a candidate standing for election to Parliament must deposit £500 (about $841) with the election authorities and he gets it back if he wins 5 percent or more of the votes.
Some countries have much higher deposit requirements.
In Japan, a candidate for the lower house of the Diet must deposit a whopping ¥3,000,000 (nearly $30,000) and win 10 percent of the vote to get it back."