Thursday, January 30, 2020

Alaska: Superior Court Judge issues new stay stopping signature collecting against Governor until the Supreme Court decides

Interesting continued legal developments in the recall of Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy (R). Superior Court Judge Eric Aarseth, has now once again issued a stay on his ruling holding that petitioners have adequate grounds to seek the recall of the Governor. The decision overturned the Division of Elections and Attorney General's positions that the recall did not hit the malfeasance standard requirement in Alaska.

The stay means that the recall petitioners cannot begin the signature collection process until after the Supreme Court weighs in. Aarseth previously issues a lifted his decision that halted the collection of signatures until the Alaska Supreme Court ruled on the case, then lifted the stay and said that the stay was handed down inadvertently.

The recall is over major spending cuts, delays in appointing judges misusing state funds and mistakenly vetoing funds. Alaska is a malfeasance standard/judicial recall state, so a showing of cause is needed (though the state courts has taken a lenient view of the the cause requirement in past instances).

Petitioners needed to first get 28,501 signatures. If the decision is upheld, they would need 71,252 signatures to get to the ballot. Note that of the 49,006 signatures that they've already received, a third were by Democrats.

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