So far I have submitted three requests until today for Recall Referendum Initiative against Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Alvarez for what I consider his inability to lead the county and solve the County problems. Two of them were rejected already in my opinion because a much tremendous arbitrary regulations made by the County Commissioners, that make it not easy for citizens to ask the rulers to do their job of managing public finances correctly. The third is in the process of the approval by the Clerk of the Court now.
Apparently the government Miami-Dade County has forgotten that it’s there to protect the right of the governed and not to protect themselves against the fair claims of the governed.
This procedure Recall, supposedly democratic in my opinion is tainted by a series of arbitrary rules manufactured by the county commission that disabling and virtually strangles the possibility of success of citizens in a petition of this kind. This is unacceptable for citizens.
“The Home Rule Amendment and Charter subsection A) ‘Citizen’ Bill of Rights” Said:
This Government has been created to protect the Governed … But all those regulation protected the Governing not the governed. All these regulations are in complete opposition to what he expresses very clearly the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America that emphatically states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or order prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of Grievances.
This amendment is clear that we have the right to file our complaints to the rulers, for this act in a way which does not produce correct and arbitrary regulations which restrict the freedom of voters to demand proper conduct on the part of elected officials and possibility of removing from office officials who do not perform their duties in accordance with the expectations of the citizens who elected them through a quick, easy and fair procedure of RECALL.
The regulations put into exercise by the commissioners have in my opinion the following inconsistencies that go against the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America and therefore I demand to be reviewed, corrected and removed immediately, to have a democratic process, easy and self-consistent with that expressed in the First Amendment.
First: It is not necessary to have to use a signature page for each support the Initiative for Referendum Recall. This is not a ballot; it is a simple page to collect signatures supporting the referendum to call a Recall election of officials who have acted forgetting their obligations to the voters. This impedes the will of the voters to have a mechanism for removing inept and unwanted governors. The ballot to collect signatures for a recall must contain at least for 10 signatures of support, like it was before the Recall of the commissioner Natasha Ceijas when the commissioners change all the procedures in order to avoid being themselves recalled in futures referendums. Taken front the citizens their constitutional right to protest against the wrong, in which appear all the data needed to easily and efficiently identify the signer by the Department of Elections.
Second: There is no need for a “circulator” This is simple process of collecting signatures of support and the voters can get their schedules to support the referendum by multiple ways in which the Internet and post mail can be included in which there are not human contact. Each person who signing is morally and legally responsible for their support and for all the data provided on the form. It requires the presence of an outsider to audit each signature; each signature is an action and a right of each voter and is solely their responsibility rather than a second or third person. The validation and certification of it is the obligation of the Department of Elections of Miami-Dade and anything else that separates this is an attempt to block and complicate the right of expression of protest supporting.
Third: It have not required notarization of the forms to collect signatures supporting the recall process is a simple process of collecting signatures of support, and the voters who fill the form are the only one that is morally and legally responsible for what it appears in the form and to do so fraudulently can be punished by law. Introducing a third person in the process is complicated and make it more difficult and expensive for those who wish to express their disagreement with the government. Each person signing is morally and legally responsible for their firm support and all the data provided on the form. It requires the presence of a third person to notarize and certify to the Circulator and the voter and I repeated: Each signature is a legal and moral responsibility of the signatory. The certification and validation is the obligation of the Department of Elections of Miami-Dade and anything else that separates from this simple procedure is an attempt to block the right of expression of the voters and also to make each payroll increase considerable cost of each signature. It is no secret to anyone that if it emit your opinion will cost to you about $ 10.00 to deliver a political opinion, as the signatures supporting the recall referendum, many people will choose not to do. This one of the best and efficient way to discourage and prevent voters speaks out against the government. It is inconceivable that form to collect signatures supporting the referendum is to be signed by three people. The voters, the circulator and the notary. If this is not deliberate obstruction of the referendum process, then what is it?
Fourth: The County requires collection of signatures supporting the referendum of 8% of the registered voters of Miami-Dade. County voters are now more than 1’231, 680 voters this makes them have to collect more than 98.534 signatures in support. This is an amount much higher than the total votes obtained by the Alvarez when he was elected mayor in his second term, overall turnout was 11% who voted in past elections that elected county mayor in 2008 when Mayor was elected by about 7% of voters and now requires to us an 8% to be out. This is absolutely unfair, difficult and unconstitutional.
Fifth: The papal leaf produced the ballot of the referendum should be 8.5 x 10 because the proposed road is 8.5 x 13 that has not the ability to be reproduced by computer printers. This sheet is very difficult to work on it and it’s another impediment added by the Commissioners and the department of elections to thwart the recall process. The forms should be achievable by e-mail, post mail and in person. The forms may be returned by post mail or personally.
The view expressed earlier in these five (5) inconsistent with the First Amendment is based on the difficulties created by these regulations imposed to develop a true mechanism of protest by citizens against government arbitrariness. As a citizen I demand that these regulations are removed immediately from the Miami-Dade Home Rule Amendment and Charter and Regulations of the Elections Department of Miami-Dade County. Because we are entitled to control, fiscal, audit and maintain efficiently our government. I have absolute confidence in the return of civility, justice and Democracy to the Miami-Dade County,
God is helping us in this effort,
Lázaro R González
“Miami-Dade County Recall Office”
305 445 7364