June 13, 2007 - Congressional Candidate Denied Changes in Special Election Ballot
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City News Service
June 13, 2007 Wednesday 11:09 AM PST
HEADLINE: Congressional Candidate Denied Changes in Special Election Ballot
DATELINE: LOS ANGELES
A judge declined today to order absentee and sample ballot changes sought by a write-in candidate for the June 26 special election to replace the late Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald in the 37th Congressional District.
In a petition filed in Los Angeles Superior Court yesterday, Albert Robles of Carson asked for a court order directing the County Registrar- Recorder/County Clerk to revise both ballots, which he maintained were prepared in a way that reduce the chances of write-in candidates like himself to be elected.
However, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Dzintra I. Janavs denied Robles' petition.
Robles, a lawyer, is not the former city treasurer of the same name who was given 10 years in prison in November for taking bribes and other corruption- related crimes.
The Robles seeking the sample ballot changes, however, did represent the former South Gate official at his sentencing. He also represented a group of people who moved into a building in January 2006 whose voting rights in the municipal elections that year were challenged by city officials who alleged it was a city government takeover plan by the former South Gate treasurer.
Robles and attorneys for Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk were not immediately available for comment.
According to Robles' petition, the absentee ballots are misleading because they do not contain spaces for write-in candidates, which he says is a violation of the California Elections Code.
Additionally, the sample ballots do not alert voters to their right to write in the name of someone other than the candidates listed, also in violation of an elections code provision that sample and official ballots be identical, Robles' petition states.
"Consequently, the absentee voter, and (the) voter reviewing the sample ballot," are easily misled into believing that he/she has no choice but to vote for one of the 17 candidates listed by name ..." Robles' petition stated. "This unfairly thwarts (Robles') candidacy and disenfranchises those voters who would otherwise like to have written in his name..."
Millender-McDonald died April 22 of colon cancer at age 68. She had represented the 37th District since 1996.
LOAD-DATE: June 14, 2007