District Attorney nominee back on ballot

HOUSTON - After his own party threw him out, Democratic district attorney nominee Lloyd Oliver is back on the ballot.

Lloyd Oliver took his case to court, and on Wednesday the judge ruled that Harris County Democrats can't drop him from the ticket.

Oliver was thrown off the ballot by Democratic leadership after winning the primary by 30,000 votes. Attorneys for the party argued Oliver violated party rules by praising District Attorney Pat Lykos in May after she lost the Republican primary.

The Democrats argued the party has the right because it's a private organization.

"The courts have determined that organized parties can do what they want. It doesn't necessarily sound right, but there are certain reasons that parties are given the ability to determine which candidates they want and which they don't want," said state Democratic Party Attorney Dion Ramos.

Oliver surprised political insiders by winning the Democratic primary after spending just $325 on his campaign. Over the years, he's been a perennial candidate, running for various offices and losing at least five times.

He's admitted in the past it helps to promote his law practice, but said he's a serious candidate this time, officials said.

"The reason they don't want me in here is I won't accept their money and won't accept their endorsements. I won't accept endorsements by specials interest groups," said Oliver.

"There's no question he is eligible to hold the office he is seeking," said Judge Bill Burke of the 189th Civil District Court.

Burke ruled for Oliver, saying he had not violated party rules and that the party shouldn't have waited until after the primary to drop him from the ballot.

"The voters won. That's the way it's supposed to be. You win a primary election, you should be on the general ballot," said Oliver.

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