Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Equality Maryland: Petitions Certified in Error

Woops, I almost missed this one in this morning's Gazette.
Equality Maryland’s lawyers say the gay rights group will file a lawsuit against the Montgomery County Board of Elections this week, claiming the board erred in certifying 32,000 signatures from opponents of the county’s anti-discrimination law for transgendered people.

A preliminary examination of half of the signatures has turned up numerous problems in the way the group Citizens for Responsible Government collected the signatures, said Jonathan Shurberg, a Silver Spring attorney representing Equality Maryland, on Tuesday. He said he expected the lawsuit challenging the validity of the petition would be filed by Friday at the latest.

The county Board of Elections certified the signatures last week. CRG needed 25,001 valid signatures for the referendum.

The elections board followed state election law in certifying the signatures, board spokeswoman Marjorie Roher said Tuesday.

The law — which broadens the county’s existing laws to prohibit discrimination against transgendered people in housing, employment, cable television service and taxi service — was passed by the County Council in November. Board erred in certifying signatures, group says

OK, the game's on. Here's what we've got so far. The shower-nuts had to get 12,501 signatures by February 4th, so they could continue to collect signatures toward a goal of 25,000. They turned in 15,600. The Board of Elections went through and said 13,476 of those signatures were valid, meaning they had enough to allow them to collect the second half. That was about an 86 percent success rate, which is much higher than the usual petition, suggesting that perhaps they were not as thorough as they could have been. So Equality Maryland got copies of the first half of the petitions and started going through them, checking that the signatures matched the printed names, that names were actually registered voters, and signers were different from certifiers, looking at dates, and other things. If they find 976 bad signatures that were counted as valid by the Board out of the first half, that is 7 percent of the "valid" signatures, then the second half should not have been collected and the referendum is off.
Because CRG began the referendum petition, the law has been on hold, and would never take effect if voters strike down the bill in November.

‘‘We look forward to the next step, reaching out to the voters and informing them about this bill, which utterly fails to secure the safety and privacy rights of women and children,” said CRG president Ruth Jacobs in a release.

A CRG spokeswoman did not return a call for comment about the pending legal action.

Before the law was passed CRG had argued against a contentious amendment, which would have also included areas like bathrooms and locker rooms in the bill. The council removed the amendment and County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) approved the law. Still, CRG has argued that the law is too vague.

This is typical. They want something and then they whine complain when they get it.
About half of the 32,000 signatures have been reviewed so far, but there have been problems found, Shurberg claimed. He declined to say how many problems had been found, saying Equality Maryland had just received the second half of the petition signatures on Friday and had not yet had a chance to review them.

One of the questions is whether the signatures that were signed and witnessed by the same individual would be considered valid, Shurberg said. CRG had filed petition papers on its site for people to fill out and mail in.

Equality Maryland, based in Silver Spring, had received two matching grants totaling $5,000 to help pay for legal bills associated with the challenge. The group sent out e-mail messages to its members and distribution lists asking for contributions to match the grants.


Anonymous Derrick said...

I agree!!

I am happy to see that CRG/C and PFOX and Family blah blah blah are going to be held accountable for their SINFUL actions.

Once again, my God, JESUS CHRIST, is a loving God; He does not tolerate lying to innocent citizens in order to gain a bigoted hate-based/filled agenda.


March 12, 2008 6:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea- not anon
No, no, Derrick, any tactic that the Recallshowerheads used to reach their glorious goal is allowable. So they lied- I heard them as did others- that is not wrong when they do it. I know all about how bigots in our history used the Big Lie- and the Recallshowerheads are fine inheritors of that legacy.

March 12, 2008 7:02 PM  
Anonymous Derrick said...

Agreed, Andrea.

Then again... even when Crisóbal Colón (Columbus) arrived to the "New World", the Church said that it was OKAY to kill the "savages" (the indigenous peoples) so that they (the "Christians") could show them (the "savages") the truth of God.

Interesting... So, AnonFreak, are gays "savages"?

March 12, 2008 7:19 PM  
Anonymous David Weintraub said...

"Showerheads." I think I like that better.

March 13, 2008 12:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea- not anon
David,I coined "Showernuts" and while I stand by it as accurate- I understand some people do find it offensive(some of our people) so after writing something about the Deadheads- I thought of Showerheads. I am also available for parties and luncheon speeches.

March 13, 2008 10:01 AM  
Anonymous Robert said...

BTW, PFOX sent out an email and posted on their website a link to that hateful interview about Dana that Mrs. Rickman gave to Concerned Women. Apparently Regina supports Theresa in these statements. Does this amount to hate speech?


March 13, 2008 10:50 AM  
Blogger Tish said...

Too bad the showerheads aren't adjustable.

March 13, 2008 10:57 AM  
Anonymous Robert said...

I figured it out: when the anonymnoid says things like androgynuts, voterphobe, anti-gender, etc., he really wants to say "queerlover," but he's afraid someone might think he were a bigot for saying that.

Dear anonymote: You've mentioned religion, largely in it's anti-lgbt aspects. What other religious beliefs do you have? Do you actually have "core religious values? Mine center around forgiveness and redemption. What do you think of ideas like that? Pretty irrelevent to the shower-recall crowd, I know.


March 13, 2008 12:26 PM  
Anonymous Emproph said...

Robert said...
"I figured it out: when the anonymnoid says things like androgynuts, voterphobe, anti-gender, etc., he really wants to say "queerlover," but he's afraid someone might think he were a bigot for saying that."

Exactly. Just like the term heterophobia:

Heterophobia is a neologism constructed by certain conservative websites[1] to delegitimize the gay rights movement's campaign for equal treatment and an end to anti-gay bigotry.

The term implies that, rather than reacting to anti-gay rhetoric, homosexuals and gay rights advocates are in fact speaking out against heterosexuality and heterosexuals. This phraseology attempts to equate the fight against bigotry with bigotry itself.

The same logic would suggest that a Ku Klux Klansman is not racist; rather, African Americans are racist for despising the "white pride."

The use of the term “voterphobe” employs the same tactic.

LGBT citizens (and our supporters), are depicted as "anti-democratic" for the mere sake that we ourselves, as citizens, don't want to be voted on.

It comes back to rule #1 of the love of hatred, depict your victim as the oppressor.

March 14, 2008 9:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a charter member of the CRG "Showerheads" I guess that would make Anonymous one more of their "spigots"!

March 14, 2008 5:12 PM  

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