New Bedford Needs a Recall Provision
I often report product recalls on air. For my listeners, product recalls are essential because unsafe products that can harm or kill us are pulled off the shelves from the market, but what if you bought the product recently? That's where I step in to let the radio audience know the potential harm.
I look at voter recall for New Bedford as equally as important for the community, as the unsafe product announcements.
Voters merit the power to elect, and remove, municipal officials. It's been a bedrock for our type of governmental system since 1911.
I believe adding a recall provision to the city charter is the only way to assure that voters have a process to express their dissatisfaction, or for criminal or grossly unethical conduct.
Did you know that any attempt by a state to recall a member of Congress is prohibited by the Federal Constitution?
Before all the action begins, our state legislators should glance over how our recall elections are managed, to discourage misuse of a popular tool.
One more thought about recall: in many of the other states that allow recalls, specific grounds must be present: the incumbent committing criminal acts, for example, or malfeasance in office. In California, any reason will do.
I believe it's our state legislators who'll need to lay out “for cause” reasons in the recall provisions – that is, specify the conditions under which a governor may be subjected to a recall, for example.
An electoral process like this needs to be studied well to ensure they are serving the public’s interests, and not that of a special interest or political party.