Thursday, October 29, 2020

Idaho: Whitepine School District Trustee facing November 3 recall vote over support for pandemic prevention plans

Whitepine School District Trustee Aaron Proctor is facing a recall vote on Election Day over his support for mask wearing and social distancing to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. Petitioners needed 59 signatures to get on the ballot.

Kansas: Sedgwick County Commissioners pushed to resign, potential recall following smear campaign against Wichita Mayor

Sedgwick County Commissioners, Michael O'Donnell, David Dennis and others are facing calls to resign and a potential recall following the disclosure of an elaborate smear campaign against Wichita Mayor Brandon Whipple (D), which the perpetrators than attempted to blame on the Segdwick County GOP chair. 

Nebraska: Petitions filed against Lincoln Mayor and City Councilmembers

 Petitions have been filed against Lincoln Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and Councilmembers James Michael Bowers, Richard Meginnis, Jane Raybould and Tammy Ward. A City Council candidate in 2021, Benjamin Madsen, filed the petitions.

The recall is over the appointment of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Director and mask requirements to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.  Petitioners would need 21,652 signatures in 30 days to get the Baird recall on the ballot. Three Council members are ineligible to be recalled, because they are in the grace period before the 2021 election. 

Texas: Granite Shoals Councilor resigns, but will win unopposed new term next week

Granite Shoals Councilor Bruce Jones has resigned in the face of an upcoming recall, though he is almost certain return to office. The recall was scheduled for May 2021, but Jones is running for unopposed for reelection for his seat. So his resignation would only be for the time being until he is backed on the new term.

The recall is over a vote to give the city manager raise. Previously, Granite Shoals Mayor Carl Brugger resigned. Brugger was term limited and not running for reelection. 

Petitioners handed in 221 signatures and 186 were validated. They needed 152 signatures (6.5 percent of registered voters) to get on the ballot. 

Arizona: Petitions taken out against Tucson Mayor over pandemic fighting efforts

Petitions have been taken out against Tucson Mayor Regina Romero (D) over her moves to fight the coronavirus pandemic. Recall supporters previously complaining about closing churches and restaurants as well as mask mandates to stop the spread of the virus. A former Republican Congressional candidate Joseph Morgan is one of the leaders of the recall effort.

Petitioners need about 24.700 signatures in 120 days to get on the ballot.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Wisconsin: Gubernatorial Recall fails as no signatures handed in against

Despite their earlier claims that they had enough they had enough signatures to get recall efforts against Governor Tony Evers (D) and (presumably) Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes (D) on the ballot, the recall effort has failed, with no signatures turned in. 

Petitioners needed 668,327 signatures by October 27. One of the leaders has claimed that they have the signatures, but on Facebook she said that she was going to mislead the media, so not clear what that was about. The petitioner has since claimed that she is shredding the petitions so the names of signers don't get out there.

Wisconsin allows officials under threat of a recall to raise unlimited funds. Evers took advantage of that and has been using the money to put out ads against Trump's pandemic response.

Wisconsin does have an unusual eligible voter law, which allows signatures to be counted if the signer is just eligible and not registered. Even so, we probably would expect that petitioners needed somewhere on the order of 725,000 signatures to succeed. 


Friday, October 23, 2020

California: Best of Three? Another look at the Senate race of ousted state Senator Josh Newman/Senator Ling Ling Chang

Another look at the recall rematch where former state Senator Josh Newman (D), who was kicked out in a recall in June 2018 with 58% against, will  face Senator Ling Ling Chang (R), who was selected as Newman's replacement in the recall. This will be the third go-round for the two, as Newman beat Chang in 2016 by 2498 votes. (Chang did not technically run against Newman in the recall -- the vote was an up or down against Newman, with Chang selected in a same day replacement vote).


The recall was launched over a gas tax and the Republicans push to deprive Democrats of a 2/3rds supermajority in the Senate. The Democrats quickly recapture the supermajority in the fall elections.

Colorado: Signatures insufficient in Avon Mayor, Councilmembers recall effort

The City Clerk has found that petitioners failed to hand in enough valid signatures to get a recall on the ballot against Avon Mayor Sarah Smith Hymes and Councilmembers Amy Phillips and Tamra Underwood. The recall effort is over leaving a real estate transfer tax in place is still ongoing. Petitioners need 496 signatures, though it was originally believed to be 479. They came missed on Underwood by 71 and by Hymes by 51. An earlier article said they handed in over 600 signatures, and the article mentions 620 handed in. It is unclear why there are these discrepancies. Phillips is up for reelection in November, so the recall was not allowed based on the grace period.

Petitioners said that they will try and cure the signatures and still get on the ballot.

Update: Here's a bit more on the debate over the signatures needed. Essentially, you could vote for four candidates, so petitioners felt that the 25% of turnout needed should have been divided again (so 25% of 25%). 

Update 2: A court case has been filed over this question.

California: Vallejo City Councilman facing recall efforts over domestic violence claims

Vallejo City Councilmember Hakeem Brown is facing a recall effort after an article was published claiming that he has faced repeated charges of domestic violence and other crimes. Petitioners would need about 10,000 signatures to get on the ballot. 

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Nebraska: Lincoln Mayor and City Council facing recall threats

A City Council candidate in 2021, Benjamin Madsen, has said he is considering recall efforts against Lincoln Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and members of the city council. The recall is over the appointment of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Director.  Petitioners would need 21,652 signatures in 30 days to get the Gaylor Baird recall on the ballot. Three Council members are ineligible to be recalled, because they are in the grace period before the 2021 election. 

California: Petitions taken out against Tehama Supervisors

Tehama County Supervisors Bob Williams and Dennis Garton are facing petitions, with Supervisor Steve Chamblin also being threatened. The issue seems to be contract extensions for the Chief Administrator and the Planning Department head. 

Petitioners need 2043 signatures for Garton and 1562 for Williams. 

The last Tehama County recall was in 1996, where three supervisors were removed. 

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Wisconsin: Petitioners claim they have enough signatures for Governor/LG; Strange Facebook claim throws statement into confusion

Petitioners are claiming that they have more than enough signatures to get recall efforts against Governor Tony Evers (D) and Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes (D) on the ballot, though later statements on Facebook is calling the claim into question. 

Petitioners need 668,327 signatures by October 27. One of the leaders has claimed that they have the signatures, but on Facebook she said that she was going to mislead the media, so not clear what that was about.

Wisconsin does have an unusual eligible voter law, which allows signatures to be counted if the signer is just eligible and not registered. Even so, we probably would expect that they need somewhere on the order of 725,000 signatures to succeed. 

Michigan: New recall effort against Detroit Mayor

 A new petition has been launched to recall Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. This is the third recall attempt against Duggan. Petitioners claim it is over taxes and other issues. Duggan claims it is over Proposal N increasing vacant home demolition funding.

California: Manteca Mayor facing recall effort

Manteca Mayor Ben Cantu is facing a recall effort over municipal financial issues and the replacement of the City Manager, who then fired the police chief.

Petitioners would need 7687 signatures to get on the ballot.

Manteca last had a recall in 1982, when three council members were kicked out.

Oklahoma: Norman looking to increase signature requirement in recall law

 A charter amendment would increase the signature requirement to get a recall on the ballot from 25% of turnout to 35%. This follows a prominent recall fight against the Norman Mayor and two councilmembers. 

Georgia: Blackshear Council member recall signatures verified; Recall scheduled for December 1

The signatures handed in against Blackshear Council member Shawn Godwin have been verified. The election has been set for December 1. Petitioners handed in 98 and got 95. They needed 89 valids. Petitioners already passed the first stage of the recall, handing in 30 signatures.

Council members Linda Gail Dennison and Timmy Sapp were also facing recall petitions, with the council holding a hearing on the charges. Two former mayors have signed the petitions. The issue appears to be their initial opposition to the hiring of the City Clerk. There's also a kitchen sink of other complaints over meeting attendance, open meeting violations and claims of censorship on social media.

Georgia is a malfeasance standard/judicial recall state, so a showing of cause is needed. I haven't seen any discussion of whether this has already occurred. 

Monday, October 19, 2020

California: San Diego voters to decide on giving school board members ability to put recall on ballot

San Diego voters will be deciding on Measure D, which would allow the school board to put a recall on the ballot if four of the five members approve it. The recall would have to be for malfeasance, dereliction or violation of duties.  This rule already applies for the City Council. Here's the precipitating event

Idaho: Petitions taken out against Idaho Falls School Board Members

Petitions have been taken out against Idaho Falls School Board Chairwoman Lara Hill and trustee Hillary Radcliffe, with signatures still be collected against Trustee Elizabeth Cogliati. The issue is the hybrid schedule the board adopted for the high schools to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. Petitioners will need 481 signatures for Hill and over 1400 signatures for Radcliffe.

Oklahoma: Norman Councilwoman claims duplicate signatures should end recall effort

More challenges in the recall effort against Norman City Councilmember Alison Petrone, The recall effort against appeared to get enough valid signatures to get on the ballot. Petitioners handed in 3444 signatures and had 2580 valid. 2573 were needed. Now a law suit is claiming that the petitioners did not have enough signatures, and it appears that the City Clerk acknowledged this, as eight of the signatures were found to be duplicates. The petitioners claim there are at least 100 other signatures that should be validated.

The recall against Mayor Breea Clark failed, as petitioners handed in 20661 and needed 18,124. Over 3600 signatures have been tossed out.  

City Councilwoman Sereta Wilson previously resigned in the face of the recall threat. It seems that they haven't handed in signatures against two other councilmembers who were threatened, City Council members Kate Bierman and Stephen Holman. 

The recall is over a vote to cut the police department's proposed budget by $865,000 (it appears not to be an actual cut -- the police wanted a big increase and got only a smaller one). There are also complaints about the council's push to require masks to stave off the coronavirus pandemic.

One other wrinkle -- Petrone is up for her regularly scheduled election a month later. 

Update: An attorney letter is now demanding that the recall should be scheduled.


Colorado: Signatures handed in against Avon Mayor, Councilmembers

Signatures have been handed in the recall attempt against Mayor Sarah Smith Hymes and Councilmembers Amy Phillips and Tamra Underwood over leaving a real estate transfer tax in place is still ongoing. Petitioners need 479 signatures to get on the ballot and supposedly handed in more than 600. Phillips is up for reelection in November, so the recall seems like it will be rejected for her.


Idaho: West Ada School Board Chair Resigns

West Ada School Board Chairman Ed Klopfenstein has resigned, complaining about the board's failure to listen. Klopfenstein, along with board members Steve Smylie, Phillip Neuhoff, Rene Ozuna and Amy Johnson, are facing recall efforts over the school shutdowns to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. The focus is on the 6-12 grade students. 

Idaho has an absentee veto provision, so if the recall gets to the ballot, the vote must top the number of votes that the board members got in the last election for the recall to succeed.

Four of them board members (all but Johnson), were originally appointed to the board after a 2016 recall led to the ouster of two members and the resignation of two others.

Texas: Granite Shoals Mayor resigns after recall certified

Following the verification of signatures, Granite Shoals Mayor Carl Brugger has resigned. Brugger was termlimited and not running for reelection. The recall is over a vote to give the City Manager a raise. Two councilmembers tried to rescind it but failed in a 5-2 vote. 

Councilor Bruce Jones is still facing a vote, though he is running for reelection on the November ballot.

Petitioners handed in 221 signatures and 186 were validated. They needed 152 signatures (6.5 percent of registered voters) to get on the ballot. 


New Mexico: Santa Fe Mayor facing recall threats over destruction of monument

Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber (D) is facing recall threats following the destruction of a historic obelisk war monument. The police department walked away from protests, which allowed for the destruction. The monument was dedicated to Union soldiers in the Civil War and to "'heroes' who died in battle 'with savage Indians in the Territory of New Mexico...'"

Webber's term ends in November 2021, which means that a recall may not be possible to launch, as there is a 1 year grace period at the end of the term. Petitioners would need 33.3% of the turnout (called "actual voters" here), as well as 15% from each council district. 

Michigan: Petition language approved against Attorney General

Petition language has now been approved against Attorney General Dana Nessel (D). The petition was previously rejected due to factualness and clarity reasons. Petitioners need more than 1 million signatures to get on the ballot. The Nessel recall was over complaints over enforcement of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions at long-term care facilities. 

Petition language was previously approved for a recall effort against Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson (D).

The petition against Benson is over mailing postcards to voters encouraging them to apply for vote from home ballots in November.

There are also recall efforts against Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist II as well as multiple attempts against Nessel.

Wisconsin: Signatures due for Governor/Lieutenant Governor recall; Petitioners claim they are nearing amount

Signatures are due on October 27 for the recall effort against Governor Tony Evers (D) and Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes (D) over the responses to the coronavirus pandemic and the unrest in Kenosha. Petitioners would need 668,327 signatures to get on the ballot. Petitioners claim that they had over 625,000 signatures. Wisconsin does have an unusual eligible voter law, which allows signatures to be counted if the signer is just eligible and not registered. Even so, we probably would expect that they need somewhere on the order of 725,000 signatures to succeed. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Washington: Supreme Court tosses out Seattle Mayor recall petition

Washington Supreme Court has tossed out the recall effort against Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan (D). This was after a lower court judge greentlit the recall effort. The recall petition is over the police reaction to the protests surrounding the killing of George Floyd. 

Washington is a malfeasance standard state, so a judge had to approval the petitions saying the language reached the for cause statutory definition.  The judge threw out six of seven charges, leaving in the one regarding using chemical agents to disburse crowds.

Petitioners would need over 56,000 signatures to get on the ballot (25% of turnout).

There was a second petition, which claimed that the curfew was set too quickly without giving protesters enough time to get away. 

Alaska: State ordered to pay attorney fees for recall effort

A Superior Court Judge ruled that Alaska's government must pay $190,000 in attorney fees and costs to the group seeking a recall of Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy. This follows the Supreme Court's ruling allowing the recall effort to move forward (it seems to be at 66% of the signatures needed). 

Texas: Signatures validated for Granite Shoals Mayor and Councilor

Signatures against Granite Shoals Mayor Carl Brugger and Councilor Bruce Jones have been certified. 221 signatures were handed in, and 186 were validated. They needed 152 signatures (6.5 percent of registered voters) to get on the ballot. 

The recall is over a vote to give the City Manager a raise. Two councilmembers tried to rescind it but failed in a 5-2 vote. 

Jones is running unopposed for reelection on the November ballot. Brugger is term limited.

Colorado: Berthoud Trustees facing recall effort

Berthoud Trustees Maureen Dower and Jeff Hindman are facing recall efforts over complaints that they jeopardized the town relationship with the Larimer County Sheriff's Office and for a vote to fund a Park and Recreation Center using certificates of participation.

Petitioners need 304 signatures for Hindman and 420 for Dower in 60 days. Since Hindman is in the six month grace period since election (in April), they may have to wait to start that recall effort.


Update: The petitions were rejected. 

Friday, October 9, 2020

Wisconsin: Middleton-Cross Plains School Board members targeted in recall effort

 Middleton-Cross Plains School board members Robert Hesselbein and Minza Karim are facing recall efforts after they voted to continue virtual school in order to combat the coronavirus pandemic. The vote was 5-4, but the two of the other three members are ineligible for the recall. Petitioners need about 6200 signatures in 60 days to get on the ballot.

Update: The petition failed

Massachusetts: Holyoke City Council passes recall provision, mayor set to veto

Holyoke City Council passed a recall election provision 11-2, one which it's Charter and Rules Committee recommended. Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse, who recently lost a race for Congress against Ways & Means Chairman Richard Neal, has said he will veto it. Regardless, it would need to be approved by the state legislature. Neal faced a recall effort after heavily disputed claims of inappropriate behavior during his time as a lecturer at UMass. 

Several prior attempts to enact a recall were rejected by Morse.

In 2017, the mayor's term moved from 2 to 4 years, but he refused to sign a plan to also put in a recall law.  

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Massachusetts: Braintree School Board member facing recall drive

Braintree School Board Member Kelly-Cobb-Lemire is facing a recall effort over a Facebook post that petitioners claim is offensive to veterans. Petitioners claim they have 400 signatures to meet the first step of the recall. They would need about 2700 to get on the ballot after that. 

Update: Petitioners claim they have enough signatures  but are asking to lower the amount needed due to COVID laws. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Idaho: Petitions taken out against West Ada School Board Trustees

West Ada School Board members Ed Klopfenstein, Steve Smylie, Phillip Neuhoff, Rene Ozuna and Amy Johnson are facing recall efforts over the school shutdowns to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. The focus is on the 6-12 grade students. 

Idaho has an absentee veto provision, so if the recall gets to the ballot, the vote must top the number of votes that the board members got in the last election for the recall to succeed.

Four of them board members (all but Johnson), were originally appointed to the board after a 2016 recall led to the ouster of two members and the resignation of two others.

Oklahoma: Suit filed to put Norman Mayoral recall on the ballot

A suit has been filed by petitioners claiming that signatures handed in against Mayor Breea Clark should not have been tossed out and arguing that the amount needed may be incorrect. Petitioners handed in 20661 and needed 18,124. Over 3600 signatures have been tossed out.  

The recall effort against Norman City Councilmember Alison Petrone got enough valid signatures to get on the ballot. Petitioners handed in 3444 signatures and had 2580 valid. 2573 were needed.

City Councilwoman Sereta Wilson previously resigned in the face of the recall threat. It seems that they haven't handed in signatures against two other councilmembers who were threatened, City Council members Kate Bierman and Stephen Holman. 

The recall is over a vote to cut the police department's proposed budget by $865,000 (it appears not to be an actual cut -- the police wanted a big increase and got only a smaller one). There are also complaints about the council's push to require masks to stave off the coronavirus.

Petrone is up for her regularly scheduled election a month later. 

The petitioners asked for a 10 day extension due to claims of harassment, though it was denied as not being provided for in the law.  

UK: Push to oust MP over 800 mile trip under coronavirus symptoms

MP Margaret Ferrier (SNP) is facing calls for her recall after revelations that she made an 800-mile roundtrip to parliament despite suffering coronavirus symptoms. She may face a 4000 pound fine for the behavior. 

Petitioners would need about 8,100 signatures to get the recall going. 

Ohio: Signatures handed in against Wickliffe Mayor

Wickliffe Mayor John Barbish is facing petitions over what seems to be a decision to stop the city's leaf-pick up program, though the enforcement of marijuana laws also seemed to be a big part of the fight. Petitioners sent in 939 signatures, and got 881. They need 850. 

Texas: Big Spring Mayor and two councilmembers facing Election Day recall

Big Spring Mayor Shannon Thomason and Council members Camilla Strande and Jim DePauw are facing a November 3 Election Day recall vote (I'm not sure why the earlier coverage did not mention the councilmembers). The recall for Thomason is over claims that she threatened business permits after the petitioners family member filed a lawsuit against the City. Petitioners handed in 872 signatures and 771 were validated. They needed either 549 or 747 signatures (it was not clear if the total needed was 35% of turnout for the last election or the runoff).

Friday, October 2, 2020

New Jersey: Second recall effort taken out against Governor

A second recall effort is being attempted against Governor Phil Murphy (D), though the original petition has been rejected by the Board of Elections due to its failure to include a date for the recall. The petitioner notes that the board said if the effort leads to a special election instead of one tied with the next general election date, he would have to pay for the special. 

Petitioners would need 1,484,358 million valid signatures to get on the ballot. The previous effort claimed to have gotten 1 million by March, but none were handed in.


California: Santa Ana Council member who lost seat in May recall running for Mayor

Former Santa Ana Council member Cecilia Igesias (R) who lost a recall in May, is running for Mayor. The recall was backed by the police union, over their votes on how to spend a $25 million sales tax. The two voted to spend it on neighborhood improvements. The council approved a police raise.

Oregon: Oregon City Mayor recall set for November 10

The recall effort against Oregon City Mayor Dan Holladay has gotten enough signatures to get on the ballot for November 10. Petitioners handed in 2467 signatures for the recall of over his opposition to the stay at home order and complaining about the protests following the killing of George Floyd. They got over 2400 signatures. They need 1828 signatures. The previous two mayors (who supported Holladay) have signed a letter calling the behavior "disturbing." The cost would be between $30,000 - $60,000.

This is the first mayoral recall to get on the ballot in Oregon City history (it is Oregon's oldest city).