Election Complaints Continue

October 28, 2010

Two candidates have filed more election complaints.  U.S. Congressman Gregorio Kilili Sablan said that untruthful ads against him were placed in CNMI newspapers.  The individual or individuals who paid for the ads were not identified.  This is a violation of CNMI election law which prohibits “publications intended to defeat a candidate by reflecting his or her personal character or political actions without proper identification."

The CNMI Election Reform Act of 2000 requires that ads must include "(a) the name of the chairman and secretary or the names of two officers or the political party of other organization issuing it; and (b) the name and residence of the person responsible therefore."

The Marianas Variety reported:
Sablan, a former election commission executive director, said those who placed the ads must provide the names of the chairman and secretary or the names of two officers of the political party or organization responsible for the ads.

Sablan asked the election commission to “expeditiously” investigate the matter.

Variety learned that the ads were placed by supporters of the ruling Covenant Party.
Why didn't the newspaper/s that published the ads refuse them for not complying with the law? No newspaper in the states would have allowed a full-page attack ad to be published without the proper identification of the individual/s.

KSPN2 News also covered the story, showing the ad, which disclosed only that it was paid for by the CNMI Descents for Self-Government and Indigenous Rights. This is the Covenant Party backers that signed on to defend the anti-federalization lawsuit. The group is headed by the former DOC Commissioner, Delores San Nicolas of massage-gate fame.  The group's spokesperson is felon Oscar Rasa.  Rose T. Ada-Hocog is the secretary. They are all anti-federalization Covenant Party members.

Rasa claimed that the issue has been "addressed." According to the Saipan Tribune, that is not the case:
Sablan asked the Commonwealth Election Commission to investigate the matter to confirm that a violation has occurred and refer the matter to the attorney general for criminal prosecution.

If any of the candidates are found to have been involved in the violation, Sablan said their name should be struck from the ballot or disqualified from office.
Who actually paid for this full page ad? The Covenant Party or the Descents group?

KSPN reported that AAG Meahgan Hassel–Shearer received five complaints about the ad.

Be sure to read Ed Propst's letter to the editor denouncing the ads.

Democratic candidate Jesse Borja expressed concerns about the early voting. The Saipan Tribune quoted him:
“It is imperative that the CEC notify the candidates and the general public about how the Election Commission intends to identify, process and remedy possible improperly cast early votes,” said Borja.
What a mess.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Edwin spells his surname with a “p”, not a “b”, as the fourth letter.

Wendy said...

Thank you -fixed it!:)

Captain said...

As I am working on my computer early in the morning listening to a live mainland radio station,This news item "pop up" and got me to thinking.

In the state of Tennessee, in the US mainland, their early voting is now over.
The total number of "early voter" reached only 60k.
I checked the following statistics.

[That State has a population of 6mil.
(78% is over 18 yrs old and 51% are women)
There average income is 19k (close to the NMI's???]

Now that comes out to about 1k per million voted early (population wise)

In regards to early voters in the NMI.
It was stated that there have been over 1k that have voted early.(Thursday)
Taking into consideration the "legal" reason for early voting and the number of registered voter, (16k+) that seems like a large percentage.
So in the NMI, 1 out of every 16 registered voters voted early??

Something wrong with this picture.
So did the Covenant party pick up their dwindling supporters and have them vote early? (Besides breaking the law on the ones that had no legal reason to vote)

What was promised to these "early voters"?? (again breaking the Fed. law if anything was given to them)

Wendy said...

Hi Captain

In most states early voting has no "restrictions." You can just vote early for convenience. In fact, last weekend I campaigned for Alex Sink for three hours near (in Florida 200 feet from the voting site) the early voting site near my house. In the CNMI, however there are only certain reasons one can legally vote early.

Then number of early voters in the NMI is very high for the number of qualified voters.

I heard that the Covenant Party is forcing government employees to complete ballots in front of them to prove that they voted for Camacho. If this is true, there MUST be at least one intelligent, free-willed person who knows that this is illegal and will go to the FBI and agree to wear a wire as a commenter in a post above suggested.

Anonymous said...

The "conduct of business" covers almost any human activity, whether paid employment or unpaid work in the home.

Even uncertainty about the expected press of business on election day is enough to be "legal."

Voting is a fundamental right in a democracy.

I agree, Wendy. Anyone who is pressured into voting in front of someone else should call the FBI. 322-6934.