(a)(1) Unless extended pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection, a new political party shall retain its status as a political party until December 31 in the year of the second statewide general election following the party's qualification under § 4-102 of this subtitle.
(2) The political party shall retain its status as a political party through either of the following:
(i) if the political party has nominated a candidate for the highest office on the ballot in a statewide general election, and the candidate receives at least 1% of the total vote for that office, the political party shall retain its status through December 31 in the year of the next following general election; or
(ii) if the State voter registration totals, as of December 31, show that at least 1% of the State's registered voters are affiliated with the political party, the political party shall retain its status until the next following December 31.
(b) The State Board shall promptly notify the State chairman of a group that loses its status as a political party.
(c) A group that loses its status as a political party may regain that status only by complying with all the requirements for qualifying as a new party under § 4-102 of this subtitle.
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