RICHMOND — Former state delegate Joseph D. Morrissey said he will continue his quest for a state Senate seat as an independent after a judge ruled on Tuesday that Democratic primary ballots could be printed without his name.
Morrissey gained attention early this year for commuting to the legislature from jail, where he was serving a sentence related to his relationship with a teenage girl. A longtime Henrico County Democrat, he became an independent after Democrats upset with his conviction denied him the party’s nomination in a special election for his House seat.
He sought to come back to the Democratic fold in March, when he moved to Richmond and gave up his House seat with the intention of challenging Sen. Rosalyn R. Dance (D-Petersburg) in the June Democratic primary.
But Democratic Party officials have said Morrissey fell just short of the 250 signatures needed to win a spot on the ballot. Morrissey is suing, accusing the party of tossing out valid signatures. On Tuesday, a Richmond Circuit Court judge turned down Morrissey’s request for a temporary injunction to block the printing of primary ballots.
“At this point, I plan on running as in independent in November,” Morrissey said.