Recall

A City Council committee Monday approved allowing more time to gather signatures for a recall election and widening the window during which a special election would be held.

The recommendations green-lighted by the Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations Committee and sent to the City Council for its consideration are part of a larger effort to streamline the recall process, stemming from last year’s effort to remove then-Mayor Bob Filner from office.

“This is something we’ve been cleaning up over the last year bit-by-bit,” Councilman Mark Kersey said. The Filner recall effort revealed “inconsistencies in the city’s own rules,” he said.

The effort to force Bernalillo County Treasurer Manny Ortiz into a recall election failed to gather enough signatures.

It was always a long shot, given that roughly 82,400 signatures were required. By contrast, it takes only about 14,000 signatures to propose legislation in Albuquerque through a petition initiative.

George Richmond, who describes himself as a good-government activist, said he collected fewer than 5,000 signatures.

He did succeed, of course, in calling attention to problems within the treasurer’s office.

Read More: here

Election laws that prevent elections

Tue, Jun 10 2014 — Source: Reuters

After a half-century in the House of Representatives, Representative John Conyers (D-Mich.), now the second longest serving member of Congress, may be an unsympathetic victim to show how election laws can be unfairly used to keep potential challengers off the ballot.

But recent court rulings on Conyers as well as a New Jersey recall attempt highlight how election laws are frequently designed to benefit those in power — and block potential challengers.

Opponents of Michael Law, the Kuna School Board trustee who opposed a two year, $6.38 million levy in March, say they will file a petition for his recall on Tuesday, which is election Day.

If the signatures are verified, a recall election could be held on Aug. 26.

Terri Reno, a Kuna grandmother with two grandchildren in district schools and five more who will likely be attending, said she waited for election day because she did not want the recall to overshadow the district’s second attempt at passing the levy Tuesday.

She also said she wanted the petition submitted before the outcome of Tuesday’s vote is tabulated, so voters wouldn’t think the levy outcome made a difference in their decision to seek the recall.

When former Mayor Ron Littlefield sought a property tax increase in the summer of 2010, it triggered an alliance between Chattanooga conservatives and liberals that nearly cost him his job and cast “a pall over the day-to-day operations of the city.”

Littlefield recently pointed to a video, Recall Fever, produced by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, on the rise of recalls across the country. In it, he said he had never experienced a campaign that bypasses traditional outlets to get a political message out. And he affirmed his belief that the ballot box is the best place for voters to express their disapproval.

Read More: here

Bernalillo County Treasurer Manny Ortiz faced two hours of stern questioning when he took the stand during his recall hearing Thursday.

But he had some good news afterward: The county’s Legal Department and Elections Bureau say it would take 82,436 signatures to force Ortiz into a recall election, far more than his opponents had expected.

The treasurer’s testimony came in a hearing before state District Judge Alan Malott.

Opponents of Ortiz are asking Malott to allow them to start the signature-gathering required to trigger a recall election. They’re trying to show “probable cause” that Ortiz committed malfeasance or misfeasance in office.

Ohio: Becker, Hagan unite

Thu, Jan 23 2014 — Source: The Columbus Dispatch

Two Ohio House Reps. pushed forward today on their proposal to implement statewide recall elections but openly acknowledged they are facing an uphill battle.

Rep. John Becker, a Republican from suburban Cincinnati, and Rep. Robert F. Hagan, a Democrat from Youngstown, held a press conference this morning to highlight a recently introduced House resolution that would allow for recall elections of all officials elected in Ohio — “from dogcatcher to governor” in Becker’s words.

The Dispatch first reported last week that the representatives were considering submitting the resolution, which was submitted to the House on Jan. 15.

A man is facing charges of forging signatures on petitions asking for the recall of Colorado Sen. John Morse.

The District Attorney’s Office said Thursday an arrest warrant has been issued for Nickolas Robinson. He’s accused of forging at least 13 signatures on recall petitions. Robinson could not be located for comment on Friday.

According to KKTV-TV (http://tinyurl.com/o3pybso), the warrant alleges that Robinson committed 13 counts of forgery, seven counts of perjury and 13 counts of attempt to influence a public servant last May.

Read More: here

Wisconsin legislators have taken the first step to amend the state Constitution to make it harder to recall them, the governor, attorney general and other state officials.

The potential change follows a record 13 recall elections that targeted the governor, lieutenant governor and 11 state senators over a one-year period. Three Republican senators were recalled.

Read More: here

Earlier this month, the Republican-controlled Wisconsin Assembly took the first step toward preventing voters from forcing recall elections against elected officials not accused of any legal or ethical wrongdoing. While this move may appear self-serving — in 2011 and 2012, three Republican State Senators were removed from office and Gov. Scott Walker (R) had to face voters midway through his term — it raises questions about whether the current recall system several states have is beyond repair.” The Wisconsin Assembly has the right idea: mid-term recalls of public officials without cause hurt America’s republican democracy.

Recalling the governor and others from office in Wisconsin would be more difficult, in-person absentee voting hours would be restricted and photo identification would be required to cast a ballot under a flurry of divisive measures the state Assembly plans to pass Thursday.

The elections bills aren’t the only hot-button issues the Republican-controlled chamber plans to approve on its final session day of the year. Also slated for passage are proposals limiting the public’s access to a proposed iron ore site in northern Wisconsin and undoing the 124-year-old practice of having the most senior member of the state Supreme Court serve as chief justice.

Recall elections serve purpose

Thu, Sep 19 2013 — Source: Aberdeen News

I am not a big fan of recall elections. This example of direct democracy is largely an artifact of the progressive era in American politics, when it was assumed that state legislatures were corrupt gaggles of bought-and-paid-for politicians. Allowing the voters to send the rascals packing ahead of schedule was supposed to be a remedy for the said corruption.

It rarely works that way. It is the responsibility of elected legislatures to deal with genuine corruption, either in their own assemblies or in the executive branch of the government. When they fail to do so, it is the responsibility of the voters to remember that in the next regularly scheduled election.

Gun-rights advocates were victorious last night in Colorado, as State Senate President John Morse and fellow senator Angela Giron were both ousted in their respective recall elections.  The recalls were historic, as no state-level officials had ever been recalled in the Centennial State, though numerous local officials have been.

In the election for Morse, the results were very close, 51-49 percent – a difference of less than 800 votes.  Giron’s recall was more one-sided, with a 12 percent point margin totaling over 4,000 votes. The voter turnout was much higher in Giron’s district.

Today is Election Day in Colorado for the recall of state senators John Morse and Angela Giron, the first recalls of state (as opposed to local) elected officials in Colordao history.

The recalls began after Senate President Morse and Sen. Giron backed legislation tightening gun control earlier this year. Tens of thousands of citizens in their respective districts signed petitions to trigger today’s elections, which have become something of a referendum on gun issues with possible national ramifications.

Read more here:

Denver Post: Historic election Tuesday over gun control votes

Colorado:

Tue, Sep 10 2013 — Source: Denver Post

A final, frantic effort is underway to get voters to the polls Tuesday in two state Senate districts where Democratic lawmakers face ouster for stricter gun laws passed in the 2013 legislative session.

State Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs and Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo are in the fight of their political lives in an election that has attracted national attention and money.

The polls close at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Read more of this story: here