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08/06/2003 Entry: "More on the fucking recall"

"The legal basis for Davis' claim is the U.S. Supreme Court decision that sealed Republican George W. Bush's victory in the presidential election of 2000. The high court ruled against a possible recount of Florida votes, in part on the grounds that the equal protection guarantee in the Constitution prohibited different procedures in different counties. Opponents, whose briefs in the case are due today, are expected to argue that Davis' arguments are too speculative to justify postponing the election.

"The only case filed so far in federal court contends that the election schedule violates part of the federal Voting Rights Act. A group of San Francisco lawyers Tuesday filed suit in San Jose pointing to a provision that requires four California counties to clear any change in voting procedures with federal authorities. That procedure generally takes weeks.

"The National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People also has indicated it may file a lawsuit based on the Voting Rights Act.

"A second set of issues involves the procedure for choosing a new governor if Davis loses the up-or-down vote.

"Two cases ask the court to allow only the up-or-down vote and to block the election of a successor.

"The petitions make essentially the same argument that the state Constitution says that, if the governor's office becomes vacant, the lieutenant governor, in this case Cruz Bustamante, fills the vacancy.

"The petitions note that an amendment in 1974 changed the part of the Constitution that deals with recalls. The amendment, among other changes, added language to say that an election for successors should be put on a recall ballot "if appropriate."

"Because the lieutenant governor is there to replace the governor, an election to pick a successor would not be appropriate, the petitions argue.

"One of the two cases was filed by former state Sen. Barry Keene, a Democrat. Keene carried legislation that led to the voter-approved constitutional amendment.

"In an interview, Keene said he wrote the provision adding the two words to the Constitution and did so specifically with the recall of a governor in mind. Because there was no legislative debate on that provision, there is no record that corroborates his recollection, he said.

"In a brief filed Monday opposing the petition, Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer said the argument is wrong because a recall would not create a vacancy. Davis would still be governor until the moment his replacement was sworn in, Lockyer argues.

"Davis, in his suit, makes a different argument against picking a new governor through the recall.

"Because of the way the election is structured, Davis' lawyers argue, the votes of his supporters would not have the same value as those who vote against him. Davis could win more than 49% of the votes in the up-or-down ballot and still be recalled. Then, because there are likely to be many candidates on the replacement ballot, the winner could be chosen by only a small fraction of the votes.

"Davis argues that problem could be solved by allowing him to be a candidate in the election for a successor. Opponents argue that would unfairly give Davis two chances to win.
Courtroom Challenges Stand in Recall Path, by Jean Guccione and Doug Smith, LA Times, August 6, 2003 (ID "hackenblog" PW "hackenbush" or vice versa)

AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHGGGGGGGGGGG! Confused yet? Hey, I want to vote NO on the recall and I then vote YES on Gray Davis for governor. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! If we must do this, lets do it in March, fer God sake. I doubt it, but by March a decent alternative for governor might have emerged. Or Davis will resign right before the election and we'll have Governor Bustamante, no? And a herd of pissed off, spoil sport Republicans. Tee hee hee.

Fuck. Is this going to be an expensive nightmare for an already broke state or what? Sigh.

Republicans. Someday there will be a cure.

 

 

 

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