Secretary of State’s Incorrect Filing Extension Can Only Be Reversed by Court Order
Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 13, 2012
While Emami was chasing his tail trying to get an explanation from the Orange County Registrar of Voters for why AD-69 and AD-72 had candidate filing extended (as he described in this grammatically-flawed post incorrectly blaming the Registrar), I went to the source of the people actually responsible for the filing extension: the Secretary of State. They were the ones who instructed the county registrars to extend filing on various races. The Secretary of State had sent this memo to the county registrars (h/t to Capitol Alert for that memo, which was oddly placed inside a post about Elizabeth Emken getting the CRP endorsement).
After contacting friends in Sacramento, they inform me that once the filing period extension has been announced, the Secretary of State cannot reverse the decision, as only a judge with a court order can shut down filing. Only a candidate who has already completed filing has standing to launch the lawsuit necessary to get the court order (in other words only Tom Daly, Michele Martinez, Julio Perez, or Paco Barragan can sue to end the AD-69 filing extension, and only Troy Edgar, Long Pham, Travis Allen, Joe Dovinh, or Albert Ayala can sue to end the AD-72 filing extension). If they launched the lawsuit, they’d also have to show that they were harmed by the filing extension (i.e. another candidate filed, but no new person has pulled papers in either AD-69 or AD-72 as of this morning).
Even if a candidate launched the suit, they’d have to be willing to suffer the negative press and the hits from their opponents accusing them of “anti-democratic” action by trying to prevent people from joining the race.
Then in the lawsuit itself, the candidate would then face off against bureaucrats in the Secretary of State’s office who would show some bizarrely liberal interpretation of law justifying the extension. Then, the plaintiff candidate would have to convince the judge that there was enough damage done to themselves and the electoral process from having additional candidates that warranted an injunction (99% chance the judge would not issue an injunction to reduce the number of candidates).
The Orange County Registrar of Voters also sent this out to their e-mail list yesterday:
Explanation for Contest Extensions
March 12, 2012 – Statewide 53 Congressional, Senate and Assembly contests were extended by the Secretary of State to March 14th at 5:00 p.m. This takes place in races “for which no eligible incumbent is seeking reelection”. The key is eligible – according to the Secretary of State they have determined that some districts that appear to lack an incumbent have eligible candidates (who currently hold office) that could have moved into the district, causing an incumbency. Redistricting has contributed to this and In Orange County there are two Assembly Districts (69th and 72nd) that fall into this category.
So it seems that the Secretary of State’s office was encouraging carpetbagging.
- Despite Jose Solorio being termed out and the vast majority of AD-69 being his district, the justification for extending AD-69 is because tiny pieces of Anaheim and Orange from Chris Norby’s old district were included in the new AD-69, candidate filing was extended since Chris Norby chose to run for his hometown’s AD-65 instead of carpetbagging into AD-69.
- Despite Jim Silva being termed out and the only sitting Assembly Member in the boundaries of AD-72, the justification for extending AD-72 is because is because portions of Allan Mansoor’s old district were included in the new AD-72, candidate filing was extended since Allan Mansoor chose to run for his hometown’s AD-74 instead of carpetbagging into AD-72.
Wow. Sometimes the Secretary of State can make even the most cynical people more cynical.
(In the interest of full disclosure, I do work in the office of Assemblyman Chris Norby for my day job. However, I would oppose him carpetbagging into AD-69 even if I did not work for him.)