Dillon recall making news
Channel 4 News, WDIV Detroit, covered the judge's ruling and the restored recall campaign. See video of the story here: http://www.clickondetroit.com/video/17317410/index.html
The Detroit Free Press story is here: http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080828/NEWS06/808280355/1008/NEWS
and The Detroit News coverage is here: http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080828/POLITICS/808280377/1409/METRO
There are some important questions about the impact of yesterday's court ruling, however, that deserve answers. Specifically:
1. Can Speaker Dillon be recalled on November 4, yet also win a new term? How would that 'work'? Yes, voters in Redford Twp., and parts of Dearborn Heights and Livonia, CAN vote to recall Dillon and reelect him at the same time. If this were to occur, Dillon would immediately leave office on November 5th, miss about two months of legislative session, and then be reseated for his new term on January first.
This unusual situation was forced by the delay in the recall election that Dillon was able to force by his hiring of petition 'blockers' and other efforts to sabotage the recall petition drive that had targeted Dillon for an August 5th recall election date.
Voters can avoid the above scenario and dump Dillon forever by voting ‘yes’ on the recall and voting for Dillon's election opponent, Sandra Eggers.
2. If Dillon is recalled, will he be eligible for an additional, future term in office under Michigan's term limits law? No. A partial term of office counts as a full term if that partial term is longer than a year. Dillon would NOT be eligible to any 'bonus term' if his current term is cut short by his recall.
3. What does the court ruling mean for future recall efforts? It makes them far easier. The court struck down two state laws that required people circulating recall petitions be registered voters in the district of the targeted politician. These laws only applied to recall petitions, any other kind of petitioning of any sort allowed citizens to hire help or recruit any volunteers from anywhere. Also, existing laws allowed politicians targeted for recall to hire anyone from anywhere to help them fight the recall effort. The judge's ruling levels the playing field for citizens.
Importantly, Dillon's recall on November 4 would continue an important precedent for state politicians: raise taxes and face a possible career-killing recall from office. The precedent was set in 1983 after the last state income tax hike when two state senators were subsequently recalled from office. And yesterday's court ruling sends a chilling message to politicians who thought they could bank on special, restrictive laws they created to stifle citizens from seeking to hold them accountable.
Michigan Taxpayers Alliance