RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Latest on a hearing in a lawsuit accusing the campaign staff of Virginia U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor of forging signatures to help an independent candidate get on the ballot in a tight congressional race (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

A judge has ruled that an independent candidate cannot appear on the ballot in a tight congressional race in Virginia due to forged signatures on her petition.

Richmond Circuit Court Judge Gregory Rupe's decision Wednesday came after he heard arguments in a lawsuit filed by Democrats that accuses members of Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor's campaign staff of forging signatures. Democrats claim Taylor's campaign wanted independent candidate Shaun Brown on the 2nd District ballot to weaken support for his Democratic opponent, Elaine Luria, and bolster his own re-election chances.

Brown told reporters she would appeal.

Taylor has said he knew his staff was circulating petitions for Brown, but he denounced the use of false signatures.

A special prosecutor is conducting a separate criminal investigation.

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2 p.m.

An attorney for the Democratic Party of Virginia has asked a judge to remove an independent candidate from the ballot in a tight congressional race.

During a court hearing Wednesday, attorney Jeffrey Breit argued that Shaun Brown's name should be taken off the ballot because of allegations that campaign staffers for Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor forged signatures to get her on the ballot. The Democrats say the motive was to bolster Taylor's re-election attempt by weakening support for his Democratic opponent, Elaine Luria.

Breit said the forged signatures amount to a fraud perpetrated on election officials who certified Brown as a candidate. He also argued that all 1,193 signatures certified by election officials should be invalidated because Brown listed three false addresses for herself on her signature petitions.

Rupe said he expected to rule late Wednesday on the request to remove Brown from the ballot.

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1:16 p.m.

A judge has ruled that Virginia Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor does not have to testify during a hearing on a lawsuit that accuses his campaign staff of forging signatures to help an independent candidate get on the ballot.

During a court hearing Wednesday, the Democratic Party of Virginia argued that Taylor should have to testify about allegations that several members of his staff forged signatures to help Shaun Brown get on the Nov. 6 ballot in the tight 2nd Congressional District race. Democrats say Taylor's campaign wanted Brown on the ballot to bolster his re-election by weakening support for his Democratic opponent.

Judge Gregory Rupe quashed the subpoena after agreeing with Taylor's lawyer that under state law, he is exempt from the subpoena while the House of Representatives is in session.

Democrats are asking Rupe to remove Brown from the ballot.

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4:02 a.m.

Democrats are headed to court to try to convince a judge to remove an independent candidate from the ballot in a tight congressional race in Virginia.

A hearing is scheduled Wednesday in a lawsuit that accuses members of Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor's campaign staff of forging signatures to help independent candidate Shaun Brown get on the Nov. 6 ballot in the 2nd Congressional District race.

Democrats claim Taylor's campaign wanted Brown on the ballot to bolster his re-election by weakening support for his Democratic opponent.

Taylor has been subpoenaed to testify at Wednesday's hearing. Taylor has said he knew his staff was circulating petitions for Brown, but he denounced the use of false signatures.

A special prosecutor is conducting a separate criminal investigation.