As the Bergen Record posted yesterday: Mahwah mayor files 12-page challenge to recall petitions.
We have obtained the letter and posted it in full below.
“The recall petition has been reviewed by the best election law firm in the state of New Jersey,” Laforet said in a statement. “They have concluded as a matter of law that the recall effort fraudulently solicited signatures and collected petitions. The Recall Petition needs to be dismissed.”
This is a developing story and as more information is received, we will post it.
Breakdown of argument in the Mayor’s objection:
- Recall Petitions must be signed by all people collecting signatures and this was allegedly not done here.
- If a statement is made in support of the recall, the subject gets to include a statement in response. Since no statement was included, no response was permitted either. However, the Mayor has provided a document (attached as Exhibit A) that allegedly accompanied the recall petitions.
- 25% of the registered voter total must sign recall petitions. This threshold was allegedly not met after “reviewing the Recall Election Officials own notes, as well as the elimination of duplicate signatures, unregistered individuals, those who are otherwise unqualified, false indorsements where someone appears to have signed on behalf of a purported voter, and those not registered to vote as of the date of their indorsement, the number of qualified signatures drops below the aforementioned threshold.”
- The Mayor alleges that Township officials, including the clerk have failed to remain neutral in the process of the recall by their “failure to maintain copies of government records, and in allowing the Recall Committee to modify the Recall Petition following its filing.”
- The Mayor alleges that political opponents “are driving the Recall Petition efforts behind the scenes in an attempt to defy the will of the voters of Mahwah who twice elected Mayor Laforet”. That petitions were misrepresented as “polls” or that signatures were needed to get his name on the ballot, in addition to other improprieties.