Thursday, August 24, 2006

Breaking--SoS Tells Clark to Shut Up; Starrett Remains

from the AP wires...
State officials said Thursday they won't take minor party gubernatorial contender Mary Starrett off the Nov. 7 ballot despite a complaint by a Republican lawyer who said her party's nomination process was flawed.

The elections complaint, filed Friday by West Linn attorney Kelly Clark, asserts that the Constitution Party failed to properly publicize the party's June 3 convention in Lake Oswego, where Starrett was nominated for governor.

In a letter Thursday to Clark, the Oregon attorney general's office said the alleged violation — even if it's found to be true — "would not disqualify the challenged nominee from the ballot."

"Especially in light of the posture and timing of the alleged procedural defect, exclusion from the ballot would not be an appropriate remedy," the attorney general's office said.
"even if found to be true"--man, that's generous of Bradbury AG Hardy Meyers. As was pointed out last year (and we told you earlier this week), the violation doesn't even apply.

The article notes that Clark claims he will file a complaint in Marion County Circuit court, an angle that worked in 2004 when challenging county candidates from the CP, but which the state has already said is irrelevant for statewide candidates.

We're in contact with Mary to see if we can get a copy of the letter; the party was cc'ed on last year's version. And when there's an official filing in court, we'll try to get our hands on that. And we're scheduling some time to talk to Starrett about the episode and her campaign in general, too. We should have a good ol' time bitching about "the neocons" together...! Starrett almost seems to be enjoying this; her comment on the potential filing was "I MUST BE STOPPED!!!"

Update, 3pm--
I called the AG's office, and got a bit of a "we're still looking to see if it's releasable; we'll call you back" runaround. Apparently it got releasable quickly, because Jeff Mapes of The O has it up at Political Blog {pdf}. I smell traditional media favoritism (or Mapes got it from Clark's people...)!

The letter was actually written by David Leith, out of Deputy AG Peter Shepherd's office. In it, he clarifies that an official response on the complaint will come from Bradbury's office, but as noted above, it has already decided that even a validated complaint wouldn't cause him to remove Starrett from the ballot. So we get to look forward to another likely smackdown letter after Labor Day.