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Mar 20, 4:37 PM EDT

Too-young lieutenant governor candidate ordered off ballot

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) -- A state judge is ordering a candidate off May's primary ballot for lieutenant governor because he won't meet the state's constitutional age threshold of 30.

Joe Gale suggested that he planned to appeal Tuesday's ruling by Commonwealth Court Judge Kevin Brobson to the state's high court.

Gale, a Montgomery County commissioner, was seeking the Republican Party's nomination, even though the 28-year-old Gale won't meet the state's constitutional age threshold of 30 when the next lieutenant governor is sworn in in January 2019.

Gale couldn't serve until March 2019, when he turns 30. Gale argued that the Pennsylvania Constitution would allow the Senate president pro tempore to fill the job until he's old enough.

But Brobson ruled that court precedent says candidates must be qualified at the time of election.

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