RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- The Virginia Senate has approved a bill that would cut in half the number of signatures presidential candidates in Virginia would have to submit to qualify for the state's primary ballot.
The 23-17 vote on Sen. Dick Black's bill Monday sends the bill to the House of Delegates.
It reduces the number of signatures presidential primary candidates must present from 10,000 to 5,000. It also cuts the minimum required from each of its 11 congressional districts from 400 to 200.
The bill is a response to the failure of several Republican candidates to qualify for last year's GOP primary, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
A federal court rejected a lawsuit they filed to try to get on the ballot.