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Conservative group teams up with Democrat to help Gingrich and Perry in Virginia

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall

Newt Gingrich has some unusual help in his uphill quest to get on the Virginia ballot.

The former House speaker and most of his Republican rivals are not on the ballot in Virginia for the March 6 primary as he and Texas Gov. Rick Perry failed to garner enough signatures to get on the ballot. Only former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Rep. Ron Paul are officially listed as candidates.

Prominent Richmond attorney, Paul Goldman, a former chairman of the Virginia Democratic party, has teamed up with a conservative group to challenge the party's decision to exclude Gingrich and Perry from the Virginia contest, held on what is known as Super Tuesday.

"The people of Virginia expect their right to choose to be upheld," said Bill Pascoe, executive vice president of Citizens for the Republic, according to Politico. Citizens for the Republic calls itself "a national organization dedicated to revitalizing the conservative movement."

"We are teaming up with former Virginia Democratic Party Chairman Paul Goldman to make sure the voters of the Commonwealth have a fair and transparent presidential primary process," Pascroe said.

Pascroe said his group wants to work with Goldman because he "doesn't have a horse in this race, so no one can claim he's acting on behalf of anyone other than the citizens of Virginia." Mari Maseng Will, an adviser to Perry, is on the board of directors of Citizens for the Republic.

The Virginia Republican party announced Saturday that Gingrich had failed to get the necessary 10,000 signatures to get on the Virginia ballot. The party had announced Friday that Perry had also failed to get enough signatures. Rep. Michele Bachmann, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman did not submit any signatures.

It was not immediately clear how Goldman and Pascoe could help get the decision reversed.

Full CBS News coverage: Newt Gingrich

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