Wednesday, April 27, 2011

SB1331 The hole in the dyke gets bigger- Part 3

Part 2 of our last discussion was on state committeeman, who can vote for them, who can be one and how the County's and Legislative Districts determine how many to elect and which entity should or can do the electing. The whole section, 16-825, is confusing so let's try and clear it up a little. All county's in Arizona have a chairman but all Legislative Districts do not. We feel the Legislature's intent was to allow those Legislative Districts that have Committee's and County's to determine, using their By-Laws, which entity votes for state committeeman. Let's use Pima County and do a what if. Pima County has 6 Legislative Districts that are either partially or totally inside its borders. What if LD26 and LD30 have By-Laws allowing State Committeeman elections at their meetings but the rest of the Legislative District don't have any By-Laws. Do you subtract the number of elected pc's from LD-26 and 30 from the total in Pima County leaving the balance to be elected at the county meeting? Pima County allows each Legislative District to vote on a slate of eligible PC's to be presented at the County meeting for ratification. The pc's that are presented at the County meeting are not deemed elected at the Legislative District level but are just a slate and first must be approved by vote at the county meeting. The three for one rule is in effect.

Here is the problem with doing it this way. The number of elected pc's in most Legislative District's are not evenly divisible by three. If LD-28 has 34 eligible pc's that gives you 11 state committeeman slots with one extra pc left over( 34 divided by 3). If all the Legislative Districts are this way you would have a total of 6 extra pc's in Pima County. If the County, not the Legislative Districts, are allowed to vote for state committeeman that would give you 2 (6 divided by three) more slots for state committeeman the county would have than by voting by Legislative District. If the Legislative Districts are allowed to vote independently for state committeeman you will lose those two positions which in my mind is unacceptable..

For those of you that have stuck with us so far, thank you. Let's move on to the Board of Supervisors and when they can not appoint pc's.The board of supervisors upon the recommendation of the county chairman, or the recommendation of a committee designated in the bylaws of the county committee for that purpose, shall determine when a vacancy exists in the office of precinct committeeman. If a vacancy exists, the vacancy shall be filled by the board of supervisors from a list of names submitted by the county chairman of the appropriate political party.


Only a precinct committeeman elected at the primary election prior to the date of a state or county committee organizing meeting shall be permitted to vote at such meeting. The criteria used to establish when a vacancy exists in the office of precinct committeeman shall be as established in section 38-291. Sec. 4. Section 16-822, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:

What the Legislature is saying is only duly elected PC's will be eligible to vote at Legislative District , County and the State organizational meetings that are held between the primary election and the state organizational meeting. The reason being is that the Board of Supervisors can not appoint any pc's within that time frame so only elected pc's will be on the books. What is left unsaid is who can vote at Legislative District meetings outside that time frame. As an example, after redistricting is complete, sometime later this year, the U.S. Attorney General and Arizona Secretary of State will approve the final map. At this time, by statute, every Legislative District will have to have new elections for officers. If the Legislative District doesn't have by-laws or this is not covered in their by-laws the subject of who can vote is a question. We believe it is the Legislature's intent that only elected pc's may vote but don't ask us to show you a section that spells this out in black and white.

Nowhere in the Statutes, that we can find, is a section for impeaching or removing from office either an elected or appointed pc. Can this be done using by-laws? We don't believe so.

SB1331 affect's all of us and needs to be read at least once to get a feeling for both the job and a basic understanding of what the Legislature intended. It is our intent that we instill in you enough curiosity that you will read this legislation and make up your own mind and develop your own arguments to back up your positions. We hope to see all of you at Republican functions and please do what ever you can to help our Candidates get elected in 2012. That's why we are pc's, right?

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