Tea Party Recall Hijinks

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Rep. Steve "Secession" Smith (R-Maricopa), an acolyte of disgraced recalled Senate President Russell Pearce and crazy Uncle Joe Arpaio, led an evil plot to legislatively "amend" the constitutional provision for recall in Arizona's constitution without voter approval. Stevie Secession actually got his evil plot approved by a vote of the Tea-Publican House. But it thankfully has died — for now — in the Senate (it's never over until sine die). GOP defections kill bill to change recall elections:

A plan to revamp the state's recall laws for all future elections fell apart Thursday when some Republican senators broke party ranks.

On an 18-10 vote, the Senate killed a House-passed measure that would have required both a primary and a general election in the event of a recall. Foes said they saw no reason to alter a system that has been in place since the early days of Arizona statehood.

Its fate may have been sealed by a late alteration that created an even more convoluted system – a provision where a recalled official could lose his or her own partisan primary and still be on the general election ballot.

UPDATE: On Monday, the Senate approved a motion for reconsideration by voice vote. A reconsideration of this bill has not yet been scheduled for a vote (while threats and intimidation to get the 16 votes needed is occurring behind closed doors).

[L]ed by Rep. Steve Smith, R-Maricopa, Pearce backers crafted the dual-election plan.

* * *

Sen. Steve Yarbrough, R-Chandler, said the change was necessary because the Arizona Constitution mandates any official have a spot on the general election ballot.

[Amending the Constitution requires the approval of the voters. it cannot be done by legislative legerdemain.]

Thursday's vote is more than a rebuff of Pearce supporters.

HB 2282 would have been retroactive to the beginning of the year, which means it would have applied to the current bid to boot Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who backers said could survive a Republican primary. And given the GOP voter-registration edge in Maricopa County, he would have an advantage in any general election.

Although there is talk of resurrecting the bill, with defecting Republicans and solid opposition of Democrats, it is questionable whether supporters could get the necessary votes.

Crazy Uncle Joe Arpaio's sycophants are not taking any chances. As previously reported, Larry Klayman, a lawyer with the wingnut Judicial Watch and World News Daily conspiracy web site that heavily promotes crazy Uncle Joe Arpio's Birther Posse investigation of President Obama's birth certificate, followed through on his threat to file a frivolous lawsuit seeking to stop the recall effort. Klayman’s lawsuit was filed on behalf of a group called Citizens to Protect Fair Election Results, and did not involve Respect Arizona, the group that is collecting signatures to recall Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Activist files lawsuit to halt Arpaio recall.

CBS 5, KPHO in Phoenix reports that Citizens for the Protection of Fair Election Results has now filed suit against Respect Arizona. It is not clear from the reporting if Larry Klayman is the lawyer in this lawsuit, or whether Respect Arizona is being added as a defendant to the earlier lawsuit, or whether this is a separate lawsuit for which consolidation with the earlier lawsuit will be requested. AZ citizens file suit to stop Arpaio recall:

Citizens for the Protection of Fair Election Results (CPFER) warned that if using recalls to change election results became a trend, it could quickly degenerate into a generalized "Electoral Civil War" that would eventually throw Arizona's electoral system into chaos.

The group said within less than a month of that warning, the anti-Arpaio effort was joined by two new recalls, and the recalls targeted members of both political parties – a Democrat, Arizona House Minority Leader Chad Campbell, and Rep. John Kavanagh, a Republican.

[Funny, it is teabaggers who filed the recall against Chad Campbell. Are you guys going to sue your own kind?]

In a statement, the group calls it "a dangerous trend that seriously threatens the integrity of the Arizona electoral system and the rule of law."

Got that? Arizona voters exercising their constitutional right under the Arizona constitution "seriously threaten the integrity of the Arizona electoral system and the rule of law." These teabaggers are insane.

I have previously explained why Klayman's vexatious litigation is frivolous and without merit. Time to make the big push to recall Crazy Uncle Joe Arpaio:

These Tea Party tools are pissing away their money. There is settled case law in Arizona that the six month prohibition against recall applies only to individuals elected to their first term, not to incumbents who are reelected, despite what Klayman may think.

Klayman might want to check the Secretary of State's 2011 recall handbook (PDF):

"The commencement of a subsequent term in the same office does not renew the six month period delaying the circulation of petitions." p. 20]

The defendants/respondents should move to dismiss this vexatious litigation for failure to state a claim, and request sanctions and attorneys fees for bringing a frivolous lawsuit not well grounded in fact or law for purposes of harrassment. This is abuse of legal process for purposes of political intimidation.

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