United States District Court, D. Idaho
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
Lynn Winmill Chief U.S. District Court Judge
Court has before it Plaintiff's application to proceed
without payment of fees (Dkt. 1) and Plaintiff's
Complaint (Dkt. 2). For the reasons explained below, the
Court will dismiss the Complaint with prejudice, and deny the
application as moot.
alleges that he is an indigent, disabled, African American
resident of Nevada. Compl. ¶ 6, 23, Dkt. 2. He
alleges that he ran as a Democratic candidate for President
of the United States in the 2016 election, and that he was
placed on the official ballot in one jurisdiction, Palm Beach
County, Florida. Id. ¶ 16-17. Plaintiff states
that he plans to run for president again in 2020.
Id. ¶ 27. Plaintiff alleges he contacted
several secretaries of state and was told that in order to
get placed on the ballot in a primary or general election
“he would have to get a minimum number of petitions
signed by constituents of each jurisdiction in which he
wanted to run for president in the general election.”
Id. ¶ 18. Plaintiff's alleges that such
signature requirements as unconstitutional, and in violation
of various federal statutes.
filed a Complaint in this Court on October 10, 2017 against
the Secretary of State of Idaho, and the Democratic Party of
Idaho. Id. ¶ 7-8. He alleges that the
Defendants refused to place him on the ballot for the primary
and presidential elections in 2016. Id. ¶ 17.
Plaintiff has filed similar actions against numerous other
states, several of which have been summarily dismissed
pursuant to the district courts' Section 1915 screening
process. See Emrit v. Secretary of Hawaii, No.
17-00504-DKW-RLP, 2018 WL 264851 at *2 n.3 (D. Hawai'i
Jan. 2, 2018) (collecting cases).
alleges violations of his equal protection rights,
substantive due process rights, and procedural due process
rights under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments, as well as
violations of the Privileges and Immunities Clause. Plaintiff
further alleges violations under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, Title
VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title
VII”), and the Americans with Disabilities Act
(“ADA”). Plaintiff also alleges state law claims
of negligence and breach of contract. Plaintiff seeks
monetary relief for 45 million dollars and injunctive relief
in the form of ordering Defendants to place him on the ballot
for the primary and general election in Idaho in 2020.
court of the United States may authorize the commencement,
prosecution or defense of any suit, action or proceeding,
civil or criminal, . . . without prepayment of fees or
security therefor.” 28 U.S.C. 1915(a)(1). In order to
qualify for in forma pauperis status, Plaintiff must submit
an affidavit that includes a statement of all assets he
possesses and that he is unable to pay the fee required. The
affidavit is sufficient if it states that the plaintiff,
because of his poverty, cannot “pay or give security
for the costs” and still be able to provide for himself
and dependents “with necessities of life.”
Adkins v. E.I. DuPont de Numours & Co., 335 U.S.
331, 339 (1948). The affidavit must “state the facts as
to affiant's poverty with some particularity,
definiteness and certainty.” United States v.
McQuade, 647 F.2d 938, 940 (9th Cir. 1981) (internal
Court is required to screen complaints brought by litigants
who seek in forma pauperis status. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2). Plaintiff's Complaint, or a portion
thereof, will be dismissed if it: (1) is frivolous or
malicious; (2) fails to state a claim upon which relief can
be granted; or (3) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who
is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B)(i-iii). To state a claim upon which relief can
be granted, plaintiff's Complaint must include facts
sufficient to show a plausible claim for relief. See
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-78 (2009).
this initial review, courts generally construe pro se
pleadings liberally, giving pro se plaintiffs the benefit of
any doubt. See Resnick v. Hayes, 213 F.3d 443, 447
(9th Cir. 2000). Even so, plaintiffs - whether represented or
not - have the burden of articulating their claims clearly
and alleging facts sufficient to support review of each
claim. Pena v. Gardner, 976 F.2d 469, 471 (9th Cir.
1992). Additionally, if amending the complaint would remedy
the deficiencies, plaintiffs should be notified and provided
an opportunity to amend. See Jackson v. Carey, 353
F.3d 750, 758 (9th Cir. 2003).
Supreme Court identified two “working principles”
that underlie Twombly in Ashcraft v. Iqbal,
556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). First, the court need not accept as
true, legal conclusions that are couched as factual
allegations. Id. Rule 8 does not “unlock the
doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed with nothing more
than conclusion.” Id. at 678-79.
“Determining whether a complaint states a plausible
claim for relief will … be a context-specific task
that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense.” Id.
dismissal without leave to amend is improper unless it is
beyond doubt that the complaint “could not be saved by
any amendment.” Harris v. Amgen, Inc., 573
F.3d 728, 737 (9th Cir. 2009) (issued 2 months after
Iqbal). The Ninth Circuit has held that “in
dismissals for failure to state a claim, a district court
should grant leave to amend even if no request to amend the
pleading was made, unless it determines that the pleading
could not possibly be cured by the allegation of other
facts.” Cook, Perkiss and Liehe, Inc. v. Northern
California Collection Service, Inc., 911 F.2d 242, 247
(9th Cir. 1990). The issue is not whether plaintiff will
prevail but whether ...