From the Argus
Recent efforts to recall Livingston County officials most likely wouldn't have made it to the ballot box under new proposals pending in Lansing.
Senate Bill 629 would raise the bar for recall language to be approved — most notably by requiring that language be stated "factually."
Current law only requires the reasons for recall as written on the petitions be stated clearly, and doesn't test the truthfulness of claims making the case for recall.
I don't have a problem with making the reason be "factual" however who decides what is supposedly factual? Judges?
Since the allegations contained on the petitions were never tested, except by election, much less considered proven, those recalls might not have proceeded had the Senate measure been in effect while they were in office.
"We have too many recalls. If you throw it out because it's not factual, that's good," said state Sen. John Gleason, D-Flushing, the bill's sponsor.
"I think there should be a higher threshold for recalling people," Gleason added.
Gleason said he sponsored the bill after witnessing what he called "M-57 fever," a series of recalls along the state corridor through Genesee County.
In one case, a local official in Genesee was recalled was based on petition language that read, "I don't like him," he said.
Gleason said a requirement that recall claims be factual would be difficult to meet but will eliminate frivolous recall efforts.
His bill also would amend current law to prohibit recalls in the official's first or last six months of a term of two years or less; and bar recalls in the official's first or last year of a term more than two years.
Reasons for recall would be limited to issues that can't be overturned by board votes, or for which no other political recourse is available.
That's my biggest problem. The last sentence of this article. Board votes and political recourse.
Same goes with
House Joint Resolution GG would prohibit recall proposals based on officials' voting records, and would limit reasons for recall to convictions of a felony or misdemeanor; court judgments finding the official guilty of libel, slander or misappropriation of money or taxpayer assets, or guilty of misusing public assets; or if the official's vote results in the misuse or misappropriation of public assets.
If someone's doing an atrocious job, sometimes the best thing to do is fire them in the middle of a contract. Those two state senators in Macomb County needed to be fired for their tax increases. Matt Millen, Bobby Williams, and John L Smith needed to be fired. Waiting 2 years or 4 years isn't enough. The threat of recall keeps politicians in check, and some of them don't like it.
Without recalls, the GOP would not have taken the state senate in 1984, and probably would not have had a shot until 1990 or 1994 to take it. Those two recalls that flipped the senate were for a damn good reason, a 38% income tax increase. Until these proposals, they can smugly tell you T.S. You'd have to wait until 1986, while they possibly enact more tax increases and hope your anger dies down. Most people aren't like me and have short memories. Politicians count on that.
This is about eliminating checks and balances because politicians don't like it. That is unacceptable.