Petition 50, the Redistricting Initiative that backers were hoping would be on the November ballot is in serious jeopardy right now. (Here is a story from back in April from the Oregonian that does a good job of explaining the initiative)
The initiative needed 110,358 signatures and election officials say that 125,948 were gathered. Sounds good right? Wrong. As of this writing, the Secretary of State’s office has “disqualified” or thrown out, 12,975 signatures for various reasons.
Now you might think that Kate Brown’s office has good reason and perhaps even Oregon Constitutional law behind her to do this, right? Wrong. The Oregon Constitution mandates that signatures be verified. There is a process for that. What the Constitution does NOT mandate is throwing signatures out! It is silent on that. So, what we have here is a politician, starting with Bill Bradbury and now continued with Kate Brown, changing the game so to speak. If her office does not want an initiative to hit the ballot, she throws out signatures and that’s that.
Here are some examples of reasons for “invalidating” signatures:
– If you put a / through the 0 in the date, it’s invalid.
– If you didn’t put the date as: 06/22/10, it’s invalid.
– If you wrote your spouses name and address and then he or she signed it, it’s invalid.
– If your black pen ran out of ink and you chose another pen, even a black one, it’s invalid.
– If you pressed harder on the “B” or any other part of your petition so that it looks like it’s been “altered”, it’s invalid.
The rule requiring an entire sheet of signatures to be thrown out for one error is not a legitimate exercise and is unfair to the others who are represented on that sheet. It is not Constitutional and it is part of the continual attack on Oregon’s very unique and wonderful initiative petition process.
Do you think the same “due diligence” was given to the “Marijuana Initiative”? Any of the other initiatives that did make the November ballot?
Tyler Smith, attorney for redistricting initiative said that “about 11% were disqualified before the statistical sampling was done”. The process that is mandated by the Oregon Constitution is a statistical process. These 11% were tossed out BEFORE the process.
Mr. Smith is currently filing a lawsuit against Secretary of State Kate Brown and this and the process for this initiative must be completed by August 1st in order for there to be any chance of this initiative to be on the November ballot.
I for one am outraged and if you signed that petition, you should be as outraged as I am and willing to do whatever it takes to stop this blatant abuse of power. I am urging all who read this to call Kate Brown’s office at 503-986-1523 or even better, to visit her office today. Her office is in the State Capitol Building, on the first floor in the East wing. Please let her know that you are not going to allow her and her office to continue to kill your voice by way of disqualifying your signature.
This is why I do my radio show every day. I want nothing more than to tell you the truth of what happens in your State Government and then empower you to do something about it. If that is something that you feel you are not hearing enough of, then I urge you to listen to my radio show every weekday at noon on AM 1430 KYKN or online at www.1430kykn.com. You can hear Tyler Smith and I discuss the lawsuit and this issue on my website: www.thebillpostradioshow.com, click on “Listen to Latest Show” through 2pm tomorrow and then it will move into the “Podcast” archive at the top of the page.
Kate Brown wants your help on this petition. In a document sent out yesterday, she asks if the petition is “valid”. This comes at the same time as the “disqualifying” of signatures. You don’t think there is a conspiracy here? READ DOCUMENT HERE!