The signatures were good. The petition was turned in on time. The issue is what day did I declare my candidacy?
My answer: I’ve never declared my candidacy, the Board of Elections declares my candidacy.
Today they rejected it- because I put the date of turn-in on my petitions instead of some arbitrary date in advance of the signature dates. Now, all the voters who signed directly in my presence, with full understanding of what they were signing- are being declared as:
1) either fraudulently collected under false pretense
2) invalid because I somehow deceived them
Reality- the form isn’t even available for people to look at. And, in many other cases, incumbents running for office had different dates in their petitions- but were allowed on the ballot. I’ve attached petitions from Nan Whaley and Rhine McLin showing different ways of filling out the exact same form. Either there is one correct way- or there isn’t- or is it only for “endorsed candidates.”
The Board of Elections is run by appointed Dems and Republicans- you don’t get a say in who makes these decisions. When asked how to appeal their decision- they won’t tell you. Amazing- yet these people are paid with your tax dollars.
Of course, the Dayton Daily News paints me as a failure:
David Esrati’s petition for the May primary election to Congress was rejected on Tuesday, Feb. 23, by the Montgomery County Board of Elections.
Esrati asked that the board to accept his petition even though he failed to sign and date his candidacy declaration prior to passing the petition for signatures.
Esrati sought the Democratic nomination for the Third District Congressional seat. The board said his failure to properly fill out the form was a “fatal flaw” and they could not accept his petition.
The decision leaves as the only Democrat running for the seat, Mark A. MacNealy.
The Republican primary will include U.S, Rep. Mike Turner, R-Centerville facing Rene Oberer of Dayton and David Finke of Springboro.
Yet, before they got to my issue- the BOE allowed “Joe Ellis” on the ballot with a form improperly filled out- saying there was “no deception of the voter.” They also said had I come in and got the petitions from them- they would have made sure this didn’t happen (tell that to the majority of candidates who got rejected from the Dayton City Commission Race- the BOE didn’t even bat .500).
I’m not going to beat Mike Turner in his gerrymanded district, with his huge war chest. But, I can guarantee that I could put together a PDF solution that would preclude these kinds of problems from happening again- and would comply with Federal requirements for ADA accessibility as well.
And, if you think the Secretary of State’s office was of any help, dream on. Instead of returning my call yesterday, they call the Board of Elections instead- that’s service for you.
The appeal must be filed in the courts, I’ll have to check if this is an issue for Federal Court since it’s a Federal office. Then again, it’s a State form- so who knows. Just remember, all the Constitution says is you have to be a citizen and 25 years of age.
How far away from the Constitution we’ve moved.
I’ve included the recording of the meeting- up to my part:[podcast]/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/BOEpodcastfeb232010.mp3[/podcast]