Gansler Campaign and Montgomery County Teachers Union Settle Apple Ballot Dispute

The Montgomery County Education Association sued Doug Gansler’s campaign after the union claimed the campaign violated its Apple Ballot trademark


Published:

Picture: On the left is the MCEA Apple Ballot, on the right is what MCEA says the Gansler campaign is distributing. Photo courtesy of MCEA.

 

Apparently you can trademark an apple—at least ballot-shaped one.

The Montgomery County Education Association announced Thursday it settled a lawsuit filed against former gubernatorial candidate Doug Gansler’s campaign for using literature on Primary Election Day that resembled its trademarked Apple Ballot, which the group uses to endorse candidates.

The flap began when MCEA representatives saw people affiliated with Gansler’s campaign handing out a flier that resembled MCEA’s ballot at polling locations June 24.

Gansler’s flier listed his name and other local officials and stated that they were “supported by teachers across Montgomery County,” even though MCEA endorsed Gansler’s primary opponent Anthony Brown in the race.

That day, MCEA filed an injunction to stop Gansler’s campaign from distributing the literature. Gansler said in response, according to The Washington Post, “They have a trademark on apples? They don’t.”

In this case, they do, according to an account of the settlement from MCEA. The settlement acknowledges that MCEA did register the Apple Ballot with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and that the campaign cannot challenge its validity or MCEA’s ownership of the trademark.

“MCEA’s Apple Ballot is a known, trusted and trademarked brand,” MCEA Executive Director Tom Israel said in a statement. “Today’s settlement reaffirms that the Apple Ballot will remain a valuable source of information for voters seeking candidates who are advocates for high-quality public education.”

MCEA represents more than 12,000 teachers, guidance counselors, and other school system educators in the county.

Back to Bethesda Beat

Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Articles

Jonathan Shurberg—Election Law Attorney, Candidate and Political Blogger—Dies at 54

Silver Spring resident spent $400,000 from his own pocket in unsuccessful 2014 bid for House of Delegates

County Plans To Push for State Law Change To Prevent Release of Citizens’ Email Addresses, Phone Numbers

Move comes after hundreds of thousands of email addresses were released to several people following public information requests

Del. Waldstreicher To Seek District 18 Senate Seat Being Vacated by Madaleno

Shetty, vice chair of county Democratic committee, will run for open delegate seat

Madaleno Formally Announces Run for Governor

State senator from Montgomery County is pitching his budget and legislative experience
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »

Beautiful Brick Colonial

Potomac, $1,125,000

Stunning Custom Home

Potomac, $2,375,000

Move In Ready

Bethesda, $1,975,000

One Of A Kind Duplex Penthouse

Bethesda, $1,199,000

Stunning Home on Exquisite Lot

Bethesda, $3,100,000
Edit Module

Profiles

Your Guides to Leading
Local Professionals

Edit Module
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags