Greens Want 'Grandpa' on Ballot
Sep. 21, 1998
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ Al Lewis, famous for his role in the 1960s television show ``The Munsters,'' sued the state today in his effort to be listed on the November ballot as ``Grandpa'' in his race for the governorship.
The actor-activist is running as the candidate of the environmentally-oriented Green Party.
``As I am known to the general public as Grandpa, the absence of the word Grandpa from my name on the ballot ... would create confusion among voters and therefore would not serve in the public interest and right to cast an informed vote,'' Lewis said in his lawsuit against the state Board of Elections.
State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Teresi signed a show cause order giving the state board until Friday to explain why it refused Lewis' request to be listed on the ballot as ``Grandpa Al Lewis.''
There was no immediate comment on the lawsuit from the board.
The Green Party is hoping Lewis can collect at least 50,000 votes in November. Breaking that threshold in a gubernatorial election in New York means the party will earn guaranteed ballot spots for the next four years.
Lewis, 88, has caused a bit of a stir in the New York race with unvarnished comments about the state's politicians. He has called Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey Ross ``a moron,'' says Gov. George Pataki is a ``hack'' who takes ``bribes'' in the form of campaign contributions and regularly refers to New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani as ``Benito.''