File this under the “so close but so far away” category.
Hundreds of volunteers from all over the state have been passing and signing petitions to recall Arizona State Senator Russell Pearce, and it looked as if Citizens for a Better Arizona was going to pull this off.
Now Arizona Elections Director Amy Bjelland said she gave the recall organizers the wrong date– thus causing them to miss the real deadline for petitions– May 10, 2011 and not May 25, 2011.
I don’t know about you, but this smells like dirty tricks. I am outraged. If any politician deserves to be recalled, it’s Pearce. Bjelland should be fired, and this should be investigated by a federal elections fraud commission– not Attorney General Tom Horne, who obviously would have a conflict of interest.
Arizona’s elections director said she inadvertently gave an incorrect timetable to the organizers of a drive to recall controversial Senate President Russell Pearce, forcing a change in strategy in the historic recall effort.
Elections Director Amy Bjelland said she initially told recall organizer Randy Parraz that if he filed his signatures by May 25, there would be enough time to verify them and schedule a November election.
But Bjelland since has notified Parraz that Gov. Jan Brewer has 15 days to officially call an election if the signatures check out, not five. The difference of 10 days in the recall timetable means Citizens for a Better Arizona already has missed the actual deadline, May 10, to turn in the signatures for a November election and can only hope for a March 13, 2012, election.