Sunday, March 31, 2013

Post on Arizona Attorney on Arpaio recall


Louisiana: Second Times the charm as Heflin Mayoral recall gets on the ballot

It looks like Heflin Mayor Judy Tillman will face a recall vote on April 6 election. Petitioners needed 40% of registered voters (62 signatures). They first time they handed in 69, but the judge struck down enough names to kill the recall. This time, they had 78.

Friday, March 29, 2013

NCSL datatbase lists seven states debating recall laws

Here's an article from Ballot News claiming that seven states have bills in front of them adding recalls (on the state level, as some of these states have them on the local level, and Illinois has it for the Governor). Nothing surprising here (we've deal with Alabama's proposed law before). There is no indication that the recall laws are going anywhere.

Louisiana: St. Tammany Parish Coroner recall petitions move forward

The drive to recall Coroner Peter Galvan is moving forward, though there it is a heavy lift -- petitioners need 52,887 registered in 180 days. I've never heard of a coroner facing a recall (probably very few are elected).

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Texas: Bee Cave proposed charter includes recall law


South Dakota: Rapid City Councilman facing recall petitions for racist comments.

Rapid City city councilman Bill Clayton is facing petitions for telling a local TV reporter that she should be sent back to Kenya with President Obama. Clayton claims he didn't realize the reporter was African American. The previous city councilman for the district is planning on running. Petitioners need 15% of registereds (6200 signatures)in 60 days.

Nebraska: Support for Omaha Mayoral recall in 2011 coming back to bite candidates

There are attacks ads claiming that their support resulted in a waste of taxpayer funds.

Colorado: Complaints about checking signatures in the Center recall recanvassing

There doesn't seem to be any question about the result, though.

Arizona: Sheriff Joe Arpaio fundraising letter criticized by law enforcement officials

Tennessee: Fort Oglethrope Mayor, three council members facing recall threats

Fort Oglethorpe Mayor Lynn Long and three City Council members are facing recall threats after firing the City Manager, Chief of Police and Director of Public Works and Recreation last Friday. It is unclear what precipitated the firings.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Arizona Capitol Times Article on Arpaio recall

Here's my article on the Arpaio recall. I point out some of the challenges facing the petitioners as well as the unusual nature of a sheriff recall.

Arizona: Another State Rep facing recall effort for bathroom bill

Arizona State Rep. John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills) is facing recall petitions. Petitioners would need about 17,000 valids to get on the ballot. The recall is due to a bill that would:
impose a disorderly-conduct charge on anyone who uses a public bathroom or locker room if the gender designation on the facility doesn't match that of the gender on their birth certificate. 

Colorado: Center Mayor, two Trustees voted out; one survives

Center's Mayor and two trustees were tossed out of office last week, though third Trustee survived the recall. The issue was a vote for a water rate hike. 

Mayor Susan Banning was recalled by a 253-218 vote, and trustees John Faron and Maurice “Mo” Jones were recalled by 252-206 and 243-209 votes.

Julio Paez survived, 235-225.

Turnout was strong -- 479 of 899 registered voters cast their ballot, with 364 mail-in ballots out of 473 sent out.

It is very unclear how this recall is connected to this article. It may be that there is another recall coming down the pike. The article is interesting for the debate over how the recall was written and how it will be put on the ballot. 

Virginia: Signatures handed in for Albermarle Supervisor recall

The recall attempt against supervisor Chris Dumler is pressing forward, as petitioners have handed in 572 signatures.  This would result in a judicial trial.

Accelerating Democracy series at Volokh Conspiracy

This looks like it will be worth following.

Maryland: Rising Sun mayor facing recall petitions

Rising Sun Mayor Robert Fisher is facing petitions, with petitioners claiming that they collected 40 signatures in one day. Petitioners need 320 signatures to get on the ballot -- the goal would be for the June 10 election. Fisher tried to get an injunction against a new wastewater plant.

Tennessee: Memphis County Commissioner facing petitions

County Commission Chairman Mike Ritz is facing a proposed recall from the county GOP for his support of a sales tax increase, a property tax increase as well as a million dollar lawsuit filed by the commission against municipalities over the schools. Petitioners need over  20,000 signatures in 75 day. Adding another layer of difficulty, the recall would then require 50% turnout.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Nebraska: Wayne County Commissioner recall set for May 14

This one was repeatedly delayed, but it looks like Kelvin Wurdeman will be facing the voters in May. Wurdeman was accused of stealing scrap metal.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Maine: One Pittstown Selectman resigns before recall vote

One of two Selectmen facing an April 24 recall vote has resigned. Selectman Tim Marks, who is also a state legislator, resigned.  The position may be filled by a special on the recall date.

The recall was precipitated by the decision to fire the longtime Town Clerk. A third selectmen, Chariwoman Wanda Burns-Macomber, lost in an election on Monday.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

California: Petitions taken out against Lake County Sheriff

Lake County Sheriff Frank Rivero is facing recall petitions after the board of supervisors voted no confidence in him. Rivero was founded to have lied about a 2008 on-duty shooting. Petitioners need 7,026 signatures in 120 days.

Oregon: Clackamas River Board member overwhelmingly voted out of office

Clackamas River Water Board member Patricia Holloway was tossed out of office, with 93/7% against (so far). The current vote total is 8155-563. Holloway was on the board for seven years, which saw a lot of litigation and misbehavior. The big problem for the district is an insurance provider cancelled its liability coverage.

The petitioners also tried to rcall Board member Grafton Sterling, but a clerical error disqualified the petitions. The petitions say they are not intending to go after Sterling again.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Arizona: Arpaio recall effort out of money, going all volunteer

A very bad sign for the recall. They already claimed they had 1/3 of the signatures, though that is probably nowhere near enough (they will likely need closer to 500,000 signatures to get on the ballot).

In this piece, the columnist notes, "no money = no recall." This statement is an excellent distillation of recent recall history.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Peru: Lima mayor Appears to survive recall vote

The exit polls are showing that Susan Villaran has received about 52% of the vote, surviving her recall fight. No word yet on turnout.

Friday, March 15, 2013

New Mexico: Raton School Board President resigns in face of upcoming recall

Raton School Board President Sheila Castellini in the face of an April 30 recall against her and fellow member Michael Anne Holland. The board is discussing how they are legally allowed to fill the slot. The issue was accusations that they were micro-managing the district.

UK: Drunk, Arrested MP brings back discussion of UK recall law


Peru: Lima Mayor trails in polls

Lima Mayor Susana Villaran is now facing some bad polls down 6-10 points. The election is Sunday and no liquor (and no campaigning in the city till Monday).

This Reuters story provides background on Villaran's troubles. Villaran is the first leftist to hold the mayoral job in the three decades, and she lost the support of some of the poorer residents. She has faced some criticism for her support for gay rights.
The article also highlights the role of the former Mayor Luis Castaneda, who is believed to pushing the recall.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

California: Fontana School Board recall qualifies for the ballot

This is for the recall of school board members Sophia Green and Leticia Garcia. The two school board members have been in a fight with the mayor. Petitioners needed 7.905 and they appear to have gotten it.

Maine: Second recall Petitions targets three other councilors

Old Orchard Beach is facing some serious turmoil. Days ago, petitions were taken out to kick out four members of the council for firing the town manager. Now, petitions are being taken out by to recall the three councilors, Michael Coleman, Robin Dayton and Bob Quinn, who opposed the firing.

One of the leaders of the recall effort includes the attorney for the Public Works Director, who was almost fired by the town manager, but regain his job thanks to the council majority.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Idaho: Mullan Mayor and Councilman survive recall vote

Mullan Mayor Mike Dunnigan and City Councilman Dan White easily survived their recall votes. Dunningan won 193-65, and White triumphed 179-78. Opponents claimed that the two abused power. Note that more people signed the petitions than voted against either candidate.

North Carolina: Ronda considers recall law

Sen. Shirley Randleman and Rep. Jeffrey Elmore have filed a bill which would give Ronda voters the recall. If the General Assembly votes for the bill, Ronda voters will vote in November on a ballot proposal adopting the law.

The law calls for signatures of 50% of registereds for a mayor or board commissioner, so that wouldd be a really high threshold.

Colorado: Secretary of State gives lesson state Senator recall

Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler gave some advice to a group looking to recall Democratic state Sen. Angela Giron. Like the other Colorado senators facing recall threats, Giron is facing a recall based on a vote in favor of gun control. Petitioners will need 11,000 signatures to get on the ballot.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Missouri: Lee's Summit Council member facing petitions

Lee's Summit Councilmember Rob Binney is facing now facing petitions. Petitioners need 266 signatures in 60 days. The precipitating event was his vote in favorof a Walmart supercenter.

Oregon: Clackamas County recall facing questions on who can vote

Interesting development...Looks like they need to check the borders. 

Maine: Old Orchard Beach Town Council facing recalls for firing Town Manager

Four members of the Old Orchard Beach Town Council, Chairwoman Sharri MacDonald and Laura Bolduc, Dana Furtado and Linda Mailhot, are facing recall petitions. The issue was the firing of Town Manager Mark Pearson, which the petitioners are claiming is not being explained.

Petitioners need 815 signatures (20% of turnout in the gubernatorial election)  in 30 days.

Old Orchard Beach had a recall in 1990, which failed.

Arizona: House Minority Leader and possible Gov Candidate facing petitions

Arizona House Minority Leader Chad Campbell, a Democrat from Phoenix, is now facing recall petitions. Campbell just announced that he is considering running for Governor
One of the leaders is a failed legislative candidate. The story doesn't expound on the reasons for the recall. Petitioners need about 23,000 signatures by July 10.

Colorado: Senate President now facing recall petitions for gun control

Senate President John Morse, a Democrat, is now also facing petitions for his support of gun control. Morse has claimed that he has faced recall threats before. Morse is facing term limits come 2014.
Morse is the second Senate Democrat to face a recall threat -- Representative Mike McLachlan is also staring own petitions.
Petitioners have 60 days to get what I'm estimating as 7,178 signatures (25% of turnout). This does seem to be a very tight district -- Morse won it in 2010 (obviously a big Republican year) by a little over 1% and that was with a third party candidate grabbing 4% of the vote.

If you are looking for the details of the legislative leader recalls, check here. There have been four state legislative leader recalls in US history (not counting the very different California recalls of 1995), and the leader has beaten back the recall in three of the four cases. The only one to lose was Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce in 2011.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Maine: Petitions handed in against Three Pittstown Selectmen

Petitioners have turned in three times the number of required signatures in recalls against Three Board of Selectmen Tim Marks, who is also a state representative; Wanda Burns-Macomber; and Ted Sparrow Jr. Petitioners are facing a recall because they fired the Town Clerk.
Petitioners needed 137 signatures each (10% of turnout). They got over 400.

West Virginia: Salem Petitioners forced to go to court to demand scheduling of recall election

We've seen this time and again -- where elected or appointed officials prevent the scheduling of a recall election. Now, petitioners in Salem are filing a write against the City Manager and Clerk to find out why they haven't scheduled a recall for  council members Laurie McKowen, Israel Williams, Bobby Knight and Doug Fischer.

In West Virginia, the petitioners actually have to pay for part of the recall election.

Louisiana: St. Tammany's Coroner facing recall threat

This may be an first St. Tammany Coroner Peter Galvan is facing a recall threat, after an investigative report detailed questionable spending on food, personal items and other assort questionable actions. I have can't recall ever hearing of a coroner facing a recall threat (obviously, most aren't elected).
Petitioners would need 53,000 valid signatures in 6 months (1/3 of registereds). The Parish Council voted 13-1 asking for his resignation.
The articles notes that:
More than 100 names are on a list of elected officials whom voters have tried to recall in Louisiana since 1966. None ever held a parish-wide office, though. Most are school board members, mayors of small towns, council members and police jurors.

California: Interview with Coastside Fire Boar Director facing recall


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Maine: New Vineyard voters shoot down recall law

For the second time in two years, New Vineyard voters shot down a proposed recall law at a town meeting on Saturday (voting down a whole slew of proposals). There's no vote totals, though the entire Board of Selectmen and the Town Attorney opposed the law. The law would have required 10% of registered voters signatures to get on the ballot, and had malfeasance standard (in this case, failure to carry out the duties of the office, engaging in conduct that compromises the town's reputation or being indicted or convicted of a felony or entering a guilty plea to a felony). 
Note the Town Attorney's comments (not attributed as a quote):
almost impossible to be a selectman and not have 10 percent of the town unhappy with a decision the board made. He said the ordinance would discourage people from running for office and create a divisive town culture.

Massachusetts: Hanson Health Board Chair facing May 18 recall

The Chairman of Hanson's Board of Health, Tom Constantine, is facing a recall vote on May 18. Petitioners handed 935 signatures (they needed 694). Under the law, Constantine has to chance to survive. It is a two part question, one is the recall vote, the other is the selection  of the replacement, and the recalled official is allowed to run in the replacement race.
Here's some the issues that have caused the recall: 
Since last summer, the board has taken heat for proposed farm animal regulations and its closure of athletic fields to avoid mosquito-borne illnesses. Meanwhile, the abrupt resignation of the town’s health agent and a tumultuous incident in which a resident allegedly overturned the board’s ­table at the end of a meeting ­also made headlines.

New Jersey: Bumps in the road for West New York recall

Here's some more details on the West New York recall effort, which has run into some problemson keeping candidates on the recall committee. Also, the leader of the recall effort, Commissioner Count Wiley, may be facing a counter-recall.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Michigan: Challengers in Charlevoix City Council recall

Opposition candidates in the three Charlevoix City Council races show a couple of past failed candidates, as two of them ran in November (for different seats). 

California: Jim Brulte named head of Cal GOP

Brulte is of interest to us, as he was the Assembly leader in 1995 who was in line to be the speaker, before a part switch threw things out of whack. This led to three recalls (and was a big factor in my interest in the recall).

Alaska: State Rep. Recall has 150 of 850 signatures needed

Seems like slow going. No clear answer on whether they could get past a court.

Arizona: House passes recall primary bill

The move is designed to head off other recalls, and is specifically retroactive (which the article says is to help out Sheriff Joe Arpaio). From what I can tell, Arizona would be only the second state to have a specified recall primary, with Wisconsin being the other.

Note that this law would have another effect -- cutting into the amount of time allowed to get a recall on the ballot. In Arizona, recalls must be held on Election Day. Now, petitioners would need to get in the signatures early enough to qualify for primary day. Arizona has also passed a law limiting elections to once every two years, so that limit can really matter.

College Students using the recall

Here and Here

Missouri: Lee's Summit Councilmember facing petitions

Lee’s Summit Councilmember Rob Binney is facing recall petitions due to his vote in favor of a Wal-Mart Supercenter. No word yet on how many signatures are needed.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Arizona: Petitioners claim over 120K signatures in Maricopa Sheriff recall

A big number here -- Petitioners are claiming they've got 120,000 signatures for the Sheriff Joe Arpaio recall. However, this number is about a third of what they need (335K).  I've mentioned before, Arizona seems to have a larger than average failure rate, so petitioners are trying to get access to state records to review the signatures for errors before turning them in. However, they are running into some difficulty, especially a renovation in the Election Commission's office that is cutting down the number of machines available to check the signatures. 

Thanks to Arizona Politics for pointing out some of the pieces to this story

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Maine: New Vineyard going to vote on recall ordinace.

Last year, the ordinance was rejected in a town council 23-51. The vote will be on Saturday.

Florida: Tamarac Commissioner recall misses by 18 signatures

The recall effort against Commissioner Patte Atkins-Grad (who was recently acquitted of trading votes to developers) ended 18 signatures shy of moving forward. Petitioners got 1,468 signatures, but needed 1,250 (10% of registered). But just enough were knocked off to end the process.

Check the humorous quotes out that Atkins-Grad gives, noting the lucky 18 (for Jews) value of the missing signatures.

Note that there would have had to be another round of signature gathering.

California: Three Trinity County recalls must be handled by Shasta County, due to conflict of interest

Quirky development here --the Shasta County’s Elections Office has to handle all recall related matters in the proposed recall of Trinity County Sheriff Bruce Haney, District Attorney Michael Harper and Clerk/Recorder/Assessor/Elections Registrar Deanna Bradford. Normally, Bradford would handle the question.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Colorado: Petition filed against StateRep. Mike McLachlan over gun control votes

Pro-gun rights groups have filed a petition against Rep. Mike McLachlan, D-Durango, for his support for some gun control measures. Petitioners need 10,586 signatures to get on the ballot. They are also threatening recalls against Senate President John Morse, D-Colorado Springs and some other members of the legislature.
Colorado has never had a state level recall (that I'm aware of).

Utah: State Rep delays potential recall law, looks for 2014 resolutionr


Colorado: Petition language rejected in Colorado Springs Board of Education recall

This sounds like a minor technical matter, and will be corrected.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Wisconsin: In-depth look at the Wisconsin recall

Very big article by two top Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporters Jason Stein and Patrick Marley, the authors of a new book on the recall, looking in-depth at the stories around the recall.
Some of the reveals include:
  • the Obama administration's heavy skepticism of the recall (which fit into what I've thought here);
  • Some difficulties with the police, including playing with crowd estimates; and the police chief balking at an order to remove demonstrators

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Wisconsin: Guilty plea in falsifying signature case

One petition gathers pleaded guilty to election fraud charges (falsify seven signatures) in the Senator Van Wanggard recall campaign. One of the signatures was for a dead person. Sentencing isn't till June 7th, and the prosecutor is recommending some jail time. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

Ballotpedia looks at the 2012 recall numbers

Check out Ballotpedia's analysis by Kelly O'Keefe on recalls in 2012. The article notes a lower number of recalls than I have in my year-end round-up. It just goes to show you the difficulty in tracking the recalls nationwide. I feel fairly confident that we're both wrong and the actual number is higher than the number I cite.

Arizona: Senate passes bill targeting recall

Here -- State legislators still seem to be going after the recall following the Senate President Russell Pearce removal.

A bill targeting spending on recall elections would require disclosure of any spending designed to advance the recall and would treat such elections as separate from others. 
Democratic Sen. Steve Gallardo called the bill a thinly disguised effort to make it harder for voters to throw lawmakers out of office.

Arizona: Sheriff Arpaio defenders criticize out-of-state support

Not a surprising development in any recall (Most of the money in Wisconsin flowed in from out-of-state sources). As a counterpoint, Arpaio raised nearly 80% of his money in his last race from out-of-state donors.

Wisconsin: Walker named in presidential poll; investigation dropped

I've mentioned before how beating a recall can help push a candidate forward, and Scott Walker is seeing the benefits. In other good news for Walker, the long running John Doe investigation into Walker and associates was closed.