Thursday, November 25, 2010

Elections BC rejects Recall application to remove BC Liberal MLA Ida Chong as "too wordy" by counting MLA as 5 words!


Unbelievable.

That's my view of what happened late Wednesday when the Recall application to remove BC Liberal MLA and cabinet minister Ida Chong from office was rejected by Elections BC's Acting Chief Electoral Officer Craig James.

Why? Because it had too many words after he insisted that "MLA" was actually 5 separate words - "Member Of The Legislative Assembly" and that "HST" was 3 words - "Harmonized Sales Tax".

That meant that the Recall application with a maximum of 200 words went from under 200 to over 200 - forcing Oak Bay-Gordon Head proponent Michael Roy Hayes to resubmit the application and to make all 150 plus canvassers resubmit their own applications to be registered to take signatures!

This bureacratic insanity is a clearly outrageous effort to delay the Recall campaign that was set to being immediately.

Fight HST leader Bill Vander Zalm is now demanding the resignation of Craig James - a call I support completely. This is the last straw in a long list of James' actions that have been entirely prejudicial to the Fight HST citizens Initiative and now Recall campaign.


The full Fight HST news release is below.

BREAKING NEWS: Elections BC alleged to have changed the rules around word count after November 23, when the application had already been submitted! See Paul's comments and link below at 10:27 p.m
UPDATE November 26 - Globe and Mail newspaper confirms that Elections BC changed rules on how word count would be conducted!

November 26, 2010

Elections BC changed rules after recall application was submitted

By SUNNY DHILLON

From Friday's Globe and Mail

'This is the kind of thing they do in banana republics': Fight HST spokesman

Elections BC rejected a Fight HST recall application as too lengthy - but did so using rules that were drafted after it received the application.

The rejection has led recall organizers to suggest the province's chief electoral officer deliberately thwarted their attempt to get approval to launch a petition to oust a Liberal MLA who supported the harmonized sales tax, and should step down.

While Elections BC has defended its new rules - which pushed the Fight HST application over a 200-word limit by counting the acronyms MLA and HST as eight words instead of two - recall organizers expressed concern that they were not included in the application form when they downloaded it from Elections BC's website.

"It's a total joke. This is the kind of thing they do in banana republics ... when they don't want to have elections or they don't want people to win. And we're doing it right here in Canada," said Chris Delaney, an organizer of the Fight HST campaign.

Mr. Delaney made the comments on Thursday after learning Elections BC had rejected Fight HST's application for a recall in the suburban Victoria riding of Oak Bay-Gordon Head.

Universities Minister Ida Chong is the first target of anti-HST activists' campaign of recalls against Liberal members of the legislature.

Mr. Delaney said organizers were never told MLA and HST (harmonized sales tax) each counted as more than one word.

Fight HST submitted its application on Monday.

The document outlining the changes was uploaded to the Elections BC website on Wednesday afternoon.

A cached view of the site shows it wasn't part of the recall petition application package as recently as Tuesday.

Elections BC said Craig James, the province's chief electoral officer, was unavailable for comment on Thursday.

But a spokeswoman said Fight HST organizers were told after the application was rejected that the new rules would be put on the website this week.

When asked why organizers wouldn't be made aware of the new rules until after their application was submitted, she said: "Before the application had been submitted, there had been no need for a policy. No recall application in the past had ever come close to the 200-word limit. It hadn't been an issue."

When asked if an unforeseen problem could arise when Fight HST resubmits its application, the spokeswoman said Elections BC follows provincial legislation in all its decisions. She declined to comment on whether instituting such rules after the fact reflects negatively on the non-partisan, independent office.......
* * * * *

FIGHT HST NEWS RELEASE

BILL VANDER ZALM CALLS FOR RESIGNATION OF ELECTIONS BC ACTING CHIEF ELECTORAL OFFICER CRAIG JAMES

Vander Zalm: Elections BC decision to reject Recall application for Oak Bay-Gordon Head based on “too long word count” continues pattern of obstruction and incompetence

DELTA – Fight HST Leader Bill Vander Zalm is calling for the resignation of Elections BC Acting Chief Electoral Officer Craig James in the wake of his decision to reject the application for Recall by Oak Bay-Gordon Head proponent Michael Roy Hayes on the basis that the Recall statement attached to the petition application is “too long”.

Vander Zalm says in a letter to Recall proponent Hayes, James said he considers the words “MLA” and “HST” to be not two words, but a total of eight words (Member of the Legislative Assembly and Harmonized Sales Tax) on each reference, resulting in the application statement exceeding the 200 word allotment.

“This simply continues the same pattern of obstruction that has characterized Elections BC since Craig James was appointed by Premier Gordon Campbell to take over. If there were restrictions on acronyms, that information should have been given to the applicants at the time they were handed their application. But it wasn’t because Craig James obviously made it up yesterday when he decided this would be another way to serve his BC Liberal masters by trying to sabotage the Recall petition. It is outrageous!” Vander Zalm said.

Colin Nielsen, the Lead Organizer for the Oak Bay-Gordon Head Recall says he has also been told that since the application was rejected, over 150 canvasser applications must also be re-done and re-signed.

“This is a deliberate attempt to blow us out of the water before the Christmas break. All Elections BC had to do was call us up and let us know there was a ‘technical glitch’ and we could have easily fixed it. But James is doing everything he can to try to thwart the democratic process rather than facilitate it. It’s like he’s making up the rules as he goes along,” Nielsen said.

Nielsen says he and proponent Hayes plan to return immediately to Elections BC on Thursday with the revised petition application and the existing canvasser applications to demand that the application process be facilitated.

“Enough is enough. This has got to stop. There is no reason to make us waste weeks trying to re-do all of the canvasser application again. It is like we are living in some sort of banana republic run by corrupt officials,” said Nielsen.

Vander Zalm says the latest decision by James is part of a pattern of obstruction regarding the Fight HST group. “The Acting CEO was appointed by the government, not the BC Legislature. He does not enjoy the independence and support required to be effective in this critical role as guardian of the democratic process.”

Vander Zalm says that since taking office, Acting CEO James has made a number of questionable decisions that have led many in the public to conclude he is not acting independently of the BC Government, as follows:

» James ruled that a BC Liberal government web site which contained dozens of HST advocacy videos at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars did not qualify as “Initiative advertising” even though the web site by Fight HST did.

» When the petition to end the HST was completed and validated, James refused to forward it to the Standing Committee of the Legislature as required by the Initiative Act, forcing the Fight HST proponents to get the Supreme Court to order Elections BC to submit the petition, at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars to private citizens.

» James has undertaken a major overhaul of the Elections BC management structure, including firing deputy Chief Electoral Officer Linda Johnson, a 28 year veteran of the agency who also happened to rule against the BC Liberal government’s planned mailout during the petition.

» James sent intimidating letters to over 2,000 British Columbians, including numerous elderly citizens who accidentally signed the Initiative petition twice, threatening them with two years in jail and $10,000 fines only one week before Recalls were set to begin and over three months after the petition had been counted and validated.

» James has gone on record as saying that a referendum on the HST will take between one year and nine months to conduct, even though entire province wide elections have been held in the past within 4 weeks of a government giving notice to EBC that it has dropped the writ.

“Now he is telling the people of Oak Bay-Gordon Head their application for a Recall has been rejected because common acronyms like HST and MLA are actually eight words. It would be laughable if it weren’t so serious,” said Vander Zalm.

“This time he has gone too far. We call on Craig James to admit he has lost the confidence of the people of BC and done irreparable damage to the independent reputation of Elections BC, and resign. Failing that, we call on the premier to remove him and we call on the entire BC Liberal caucus and all of the potential leadership candidates to immediately denounce this charade,” Vander Zalm concluded.

.

60 comments:

Anonymous said...

This seems anti-democratic to the point of possibly being criminal. If this requirement were changed on November 24th as some are claiming does this deserve a criminal investigation? Or is that reserved for fictitious crimes against back decks?

Anonymous said...

http://www.donewithdalton.com/2010/11/25/proof-that-elections-bc-added-number-of-words-in-proponent-statement-on-november-24/

What happened on Nov 24th?

Anonymous said...

Two words..
Banana Republic

Paul said...

Proof that Elections BCadded "Number of words in proponent statement" on November 24

Below is technical proof, this clause was added on November 23, 2010, AFTER the submission of the recall application.

Technical Proof!

This shows two Google snapshots of the Elections BC recall page.

November 23, 2010 snapshot

E. Recall petition application package:

It is recommended that anyone planning to apply for a recall petition carefully study the forms and guides listed below before making an application. The application package contains:

The "Number of words in proponent statement" link does not exist in the November 23 snapshot.

The page on November 25, 2010 clearly shows the Number of words in proponent statement link.

They placed this new link right in the middle of the original five links probably thinking that no one would notice the difference.

Furthermore, there was a new folder created on November 24th beneath the Elections BC "/docs/" folder called "rcl/"

A new .PDF document created on November 24, 2010 2:51 PM containing the new clause was placed into this new folder.

The definitions of what counts as a word were obviously changed sometime between the filing and the rejecting of this Recall Petition.

Craig James was obviously ordered to find something wrong with the application.

What other monkey wrench is Craig James going to throw into the works after everything is re-submitted?

People try to play by the rules and this Campbell anointed clown changes them.

He's supposed to be appointed by an all party commitee not just the Campbell Liberals.

Spread the link.

Anonymous said...

Learn how to count morons !

Anonymous said...

"James has gone on record as saying that a referendum on the HST will take between one year and nine months to conduct, even though entire province wide elections have been held in the past within 4 weeks of a government giving notice to EBC that it has dropped the writ."

Colin Hansen backed this up on CKNW today. Christy Clark asked him why is it then possible for full elections to be held w/ only 28 days notice. Hansen replied in circles w/ smoke & mirrors and Christy just lapped it up like a kitten @ a milk plate.

janet said...

This just makes me crazy. Geez, I could get violent in my old age - it just makes me want to go out and punch somebody...
Recourse - there Must be some recourse. Immediately. Changing the clauses midstream? That alone has to be illegal. The rest is - yes - Unbelievable. Beyond ridiculous. And scary...

Anonymous said...

"Unbelievable."

Yet it happened. And worse has happened and we have no reason to expect change. It is time to believe what our senses are informing us.

Gary E said...

Hi Bill

I just posted a piece, copying from your blog. Hope that's okay?

Is there any word on Colin Nielsens actions yesterday on his going back to EBC and waiting until they approved the new application?

We in the Cariboo Chilcotin are watching the antics of EBC very closely and will learn from it I am sure.

Anonymous said...

James is just a stooge for gordo the impaler. This is like the closing of the BC rail trial all gordos masterplan. James is a coward too, like his boss. Enough of these people, they are all a waste of skin. RECALL THEM ALL!


Kam Lee

kootcoot said...

I feel just like janet, but I will stay calm and merely propose that Craig James be drawn and quartered at noon on November 27 at Robson Square and his head left on a pike until it rots away as a reminder of how we feel about LIEberal skullduggery!

Then we could do another LIEberal every Saturday at noon, starting with Gordo hisself on December 4, as a great birthday present to one of my sons.

Anonymous said...

This story of Craig James and the government efforts of sabotaging democracy, has been sent overseas. Don't know what good it will do given the piss poor government we currently have - but the news is going out where it needs to go.

Thank you.

JW

Anonymous said...

I say it again . . .

"WE ONLY CHEAT WHEN WE CAN'T WIN"

the official motto of the Liberal Party.

Just wait until Christy (BC's Evita Person) or Kevin (BC's Reich Protektor) becomes Premier then they won't even need Elections BC to do their dirty work, they will just throw you and the rest of the anti-HST executive in prison.

The GREAT SATAN

Anonymous said...

Speaking of criminal acts ----

From: Steve Dockeray
Sent: Wednesday, November 24, 2010 9:52 AM
To: b bill ; good@cknw.com ; nw ws ; nwnews ; programming com

Subject: The FBI has launched major investigations into Goldman Sachs


1)The FBI has launched major investigations into Goldman Sachs & others over the scams etc that lead to the Fiscal Meltdown

2) Why did Gordo sign a deal to share investment in Lumber mills etc with Wash. State Oregon etc. -- I have the BC Gov announcement that the BC Media did not announce etc.


steve dockeray
milner bc
canada

Anonymous said...

Speaking of criminal acts ----

I am sure you can also find these vids on youtube by now !!

From: Steve Dockeray
Sent: Saturday, November 20, 2010 12:05 PM
To: weekendnews@globaltv.com
Subject: I told you How the Movie inside Job exposed how the Fiscal meltdown was not an accident -this week Jon Stewart interviewd Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera about their Book All the Devils Are Here ie: Meltdown was not an Accident

All the Devils Are Here by Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera



Videos for Bethany McLean & Joe Nocera
The Daily Show - 11/16/2010 - Exclusive ...
15 min - 3 days ago
thedailyshow.com

The Daily Show - 11/16/2010 - Bethany McLean ...
8 min - 3 days ago
thedailyshow.com







steve dockeray
milner bc
Canada

E.M said...

Special Committee to Appoint a Chief Electoral Officer A Special Committee to Appoint a Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) was formed by the Legislative Assembly on May 6, 2010 to select and unanimously recommend a new Chief Electoral Officer. Mr. Craig James has been appointed Acting Chief Electoral Officer until a CEO is appointed.
Membership
John van Dongen (Chair)
Sue Hammell (Deputy Chair) NDP
Dr. Terry Lake
John Les
Bruce Ralston NDP
------
They may have added the page about what is considered words, but has always been 200 words.

Currently, any registered voter in British Columbia can apply for a petition to recall their MLA. The voter must submit a completed application form to
Elections BC with a processing fee of $50. The application must include a statement of up to 200 words why, in the opinion of the voter, the Member should be recalled. A Member cannot be subject to recall during the first 18 months following their election.

Harry Neufeld
Chief Electoral Officer
November 2003

E.M said...

All I can say to Paul is fabulous!!!! Why would You THINK that this evidence (google snapshots) I guess its because of lessons learned of the lying Liberals.
Thank You

Anonymous said...

Politician's no balls, just strings.
Send them into the body scanner and rope them off.

Anonymous said...

Not really unbelieveable, it is a manifestation of not reading the rules. The rules state only 200 words, not more. Any fool can interpret "HST" as being a word.

Seems once again, Delaney and company figure that just because a sheet is sent in, it will be automatically approved.

Next time, take the time to check and double check. Send in a 150 word statement, and you'll be fine.

and finally, learn to count.

Anonymous said...

The Recall and Initiative Act passed in 1996 by the NDP clearly states in Sec. 19(2) c:

19 (1) A registered voter for an electoral district may apply under subsection (2) for the issuance of a petition for the recall of the Member of the Legislative Assembly for that electoral district.

(2) The application for the issuance of a recall petition must be made to the chief electoral officer and contain the following:

(a) the name of the Member;

(b) the name and residential address of the applicant;

(c) a statement, not exceeding 200 words, setting out why, in the opinion of the applicant, the recall of the Member is warranted;

(d) a solemn declaration of the applicant that he or she is not disqualified under this Act from making the application;

(e) any other information that may be prescribed.

(3) The application for the issuance of a recall petition must be accompanied by a processing fee of $50.

(4) No application for the issuance of a recall petition may be made during the 18 months following general voting day for the last election of the Member."

Also interesting that someone pointed out a change in Elections BC's lsit of documents on November 24th. The application was submitted with media coverage on November 22nd.

Someone should stop pantng and ranting and actually learn how to do the homework.

There hasn't been any change in the rules. That can't be done without changes to the legislation.

So that 200 word rule? Blame the NDP. The act has never been revised since it was passed.

Rick said...

I hate to rain on the parade and no I am not a PAB but I've looked in the Recall and Initiative Act and the Election Act and was unable to find the definition of word so off to the Interpretation Act and lo and behold
"words" includes figures, punctuation marks, and typographical, monetary and mathematical symbols;

It appears it would be prudent to count the periods, commas, etc. in the word count or Craig James the letter of the Law guy might likely reject it again.

If one wants to use their rules one really needs to understand what the words they use mean and one is likely to be very surprised by the fact that some of the words they use do not mean what one would think they mean from ones everyday use of them. It is not so convoluted by accident it is written in the language Legalese. Do you speak or write it, probably not unless you are a Lawyer which are the ones who wrote all this mumbo jumbo bullshit.

Anonymous said...

UNBELIEVABLE IS RIGHT !!! this fellow, James is a poker PLAYER. He appears to have changed the wording AFTER the document was submitted.You know; switch the cards under the table.
And is it now true that he's gone off to Ottawa? FOR HOW LONG? UNBELIEVABLE? How long does he expect us to wait to get his signature on the document?

Not only is this irresponsible behaviour as a paid public servant WHO HAS only BEEN PUT THERE IN A CARETAKER POSITION, but this is really a slap in the face to the ELECTORATE of the province.

Changing the rules according to Mr. Craig James's dictionary(anybody can publish a "standard" dictionary,- which usually takes into account the usage of the prevalent expressions.) MLA is a standard title for B.C. provincial elected representatives (as stated in the Social Studies textbook for all Gr.4 students in the province of B.C.( Oxford,"Outlooks 4 Our Beginnings",page182) and the HST is well known across all provinces in Canada (as a tax that can inflame public anger ie; watch how Ontario electorate deals with the present provincial gov't in the next election). The Saskatchewan electorate threw out the government that brought that tax to that province and THE NEW GOVERNMENT proceeded to eliminate the HST.
There appears to be scull duggery going on here. How can we Call in the RCMP to investigate.

By the way...What does our elected NDP loyal opposition have to say about this attempt to stall democracy.

Can we request to have the GG ,sorry; The Lieutenant Governor General, the Hon.Steven Point, of the province of B.C. comment on this travesty of democracy?

Anonymous said...

"Can we request to have the GG ,sorry; The Lieutenant Governor General, the Hon.Steven Point, of the province of B.C. comment on this travesty of democracy?"

LG would not get into such matters.

The only travesty of democracy is that Delaney and The Zalm plus their idiot supporters didn't do their homework.

They can start by looking up the definition of "word" in the dictionary and learning how to count to 200.

Blaming others for simple errors.

Is this what Delaney is all about?

If it is, this guy will be a real treat for being an MLA or worse a Minister or Premier.

Anonymous said...

I just emailed Mr. James ("Here's an abbreviation for you: 4Q!") and his email is so swamped that webmaster had to queue my email to him.

Take heart, everybody -- with this last move, he's politisized countless more British Columbians, who hopefully won't just be rounded up and shot...

Paul said...

@Mr/Miss/Mrs/Ms Anonymous 11:11 AM PST

"The act has never been revised since it was passed"

"That can't be done without changes to the legislation"

What a dump load of PABlum.

Obviously the application was submitted on November 22nd and obviously the media covered it.

Just as obvious to everyone here is that the definitions of what counts as a word were changed sometime between the submission and the rejection of this Recall Petition.

You posted 19(2)(c)

That's before Craig James decided to add a new clause to 19(2)(c) and name it "Number of words in proponent statement"

He did this on November 24th.

The Recall group were not given the "new" definitions until AFTER the Recall Petition was filed.

Included in the notification of the rejection of the Recall Petition was the notice of the "new" definitions and the information that those "new" definitions were "NOW" on the website.

So please spare us the "can't be done without changes to the legislation" nonsense.

Craig James did this WITHOUT changes to the legislation and then conveniently created documentation in support of his decision to deny the application.

And that "Blame the NDP" crap makes you sound like a mindless PAB Poodle who takes orders from the same master as Craig James.

Anonymous said...

"his email is so swamped that webmaster had to queue my email to him."

A bit odd. Emails aren't usually handled by a webmaster, they are automatically forwarded to a receiving address into Outlook or some other application.

terrence said...

@Anonymous at 12:01 PM PST

Maybe YOU should look up dictionary definitions BEFORE you a make FOOL of yourself in public. But, I really doubt you would know where to look or what the definition means.

For others on Bill’s blog, I will copy and paste from Norm Farrell at Northern Insights who quotes the Oxford Dictionary,

"An abbreviation composed of the first letters of other words so that the abbreviation itself forms a word. . .

Acronyms are treated just like ordinary words in a sentence, and may be composed of all capital letters, or of an initial capital followed by small letters. . . "

nruff said...

The Elections BC spokesperson should check their records before asserting no petition has ever come close to 200 words. The 1997 first Skeena petition contained 201words using the new criteria.

Paul said...

Friday morning news conference in downtown Vancouver

Carole James: "I believe there’s a problem with the way this was handled"

Wow Carole, way to put the boots to Craig James.

Liberal anointed Craig James must be trembling in fear and changing his underwear after that severe beating.

Did Carole James answer the question of whether or not she thought "non-partisan" Craig James made a partisan decision?

Of course not.

Did Carole James join Fight HST’s calls for the Liberal anointed Craig James to resign?

Of course not.

The REAL leader of the opposition Bill Vander Zalm:

"We call on Craig James to admit he has lost the confidence of the people of BC and done irreparable damage to the independent reputation of Elections BC, and resign."

"Failing that, we call on the premier to remove him and we call on the entire BC Liberal caucus and all of the potential leadership candidates to immediately denounce this charade.
"

The Liberals don't want to get rid of Craig James and they love that Carole James is still hanging around slapping people with a doily.

Bill Tieleman said...

A word of warning once again to posters - libellous comments will not be posted - and I am the judge of that.

Comments with overly personal attacks are also not acceptable - just rejected one on this item.

Anonymous said...

"The act has never been revised since it was passed"

""That can't be done without changes to the legislation"

What a dump load of PABlum."

Call it whatever childish name you want, but live with it, it is fact.

"Obviously the application was submitted on November 22nd and obviously the media covered it.

Just as obvious to everyone here is that the definitions of what counts as a word were changed sometime between the submission and the rejection of this Recall Petition."

Seems "everyone here" according the annoymous poster carrying the name Paul doesn't know what a word is.



You posted 19(2)(c)

That's before Craig James decided to add a new clause to 19(2)(c) and name it "Number of words in proponent statement""

Sorry. there was never any revision or clause to Sec. 19 as you claim. Visit Revised Statutes of BC and locate the act and you'll see it has never been changed.

Revisions to legislation can only be made in the Legislature not by the Acting Chief Electoral Officer.

He did this on November 24th.

The Recall group were not given the "new" definitions until AFTER the Recall Petition was filed.

The Recall group delivered a statement which was over the 200 word limit.

Should be been 100 words.



Included in the notification of the rejection of the Recall Petition was the notice of the "new" definitions and the information that those "new" definitions were "NOW" on the website.

Sure, according to this poster.


So please spare us the "can't be done without changes to the legislation" nonsense.

It's a fact. Live with it.


Craig James did this WITHOUT changes to the legislation and then conveniently created documentation in support of his decision to deny the application.

And that "Blame the NDP" crap makes you sound like a mindless PAB Poodle who takes orders from the same master as Craig James.

The NDP initiated the legislation and it has never been revised since then. So they are to blame for the alleged mess.

But seriously folks, why the perpetual whining over errors made by Fight HST? They are the cause of their own errors and this once again erodes their credibility.

Stick to the rules. I certainly would not have submitted something that has 197 words in it to reach a 200 word limit. I would have submitted something in 100 words to 120 to leave room for a margin of error.

But Fight HST continues to stumble once again.

Anonymous said...

I also sent word overseas. I had 3 brothers, 2 brothers-in-law and a sister in the armed services during WW11. Two of them were in the liberation of Holland. We stay in touch with each other, even into the second and third generations. I told them all about Campbell, and asked the people to spread the word, all through Holland. I told them about, Campbell's evil of having the highest number of children in poverty, in all of Canada. That our BC children are too hungry to focus on their lessons. I told them, the Liberal ministers and mla's and Mr. James, back that monster to the hilt. Anyone else having relatives or friends overseas, tell them to spread the word. I know people have sent the word, to Australia. The people of Holland, starved during the war, many starved to death. They took a very dim view, of Campbell's treachery against our BC children.

DPL said...

So to keep it short, changes were made, the volunteers paper work will no doubt be over at Elections BC by now, and maybe when James gets back from Ottawa he will get things back in motion. I suggest a fitting wording would be "Recall all elected Liberal

Island Man said...

It's truly unfortunate that the mainstream BC press has not jumped on this issue and demanded that Election's BC work with the anti-hst team to quickly resolve this. The changed the rules after the fact and they should have caled the team and explained the situation and offered them an opportunity to make changes.
If Craig James is an honourable man he will step up and fix this issue today...otherwise we are left with only one conclusion regarding James and Elections BC

Anonymous said...

From the word counting document of EBS's website:

"Subject to the standard on hyphenated terms above, numerals are to be
spelled out in words before calculating the number of words
e.g. “85” is two words (eighty-five)
e.g. “one hundred” is two words
e.g. “twenty-three” is two words
e.g. “2010” is three words (two thousand ten)"

Another bogus reason the word count was over in the petition.

Craig James needs to resign over this. Rules after the fact? I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

OT but Christy Clark taking next week off to "think about it" (just on CKNW).

Wow. B.C.'s own Sarah Palin.

Gantry said...

Unbelievable? No, I don't think so. I was flabbergasted and speechless when I first read about it but this was a Liberal appointee taking an all too typical position on a BC political matter. Petty is the best word to describe Craig James ruling (if it didn't come from the Liberal cabinet itself) but not unbelievable. Not in Liberal BC.

This decision angers me more than the HST, more than the way it was introduced and more than Liberal MLAs (sorry that's Members of the Legislative Assembly for you PAB writers) not fighting Campell and Hansen on behalf of their constituents. How do we go about recalling Craig James?

cosmicsync said...

@ nruff said

Where can we see that Skeena petition?

Beth said...

Angry appalled kinda scared I cant find the words to explain
where do i sign to have mr james de- throned, maybe we should be sending a signed petion to the rcmp to launch a criminal investigation in to elections bc

Anonymous said...

I just wish I was surprised, or shocked,or disappointed with the process.

Unfortunately after all this time living under such a corrupt regime it is no more than I expected. How sad is that.

Anonymous said...

I think Mr. James had better keep, Basi and Virk in mind. Campbell never does his own dirty work, he gets people like Mr. James to do it for him. If James goes down, for tampering with BC Elections. Campbell will not hesitate, to call James a criminal, who acted with out his knowledge, Campbell will cut Mr. James throat. There are stupid people, who sell their souls, to the devil Campbell. Beware Mr. James!!! Campbell hand picked you for this, dirty job.

Paul said...

ELECTION ACT (Current to November 17, 2010)

[RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 106
Part 2 — Election and Other Officials
Division 1 — Chief Electoral Officer

Appointment of chief electoral officer

4 (1) On the recommendation of the Legislative Assembly, the Lieutenant Governor must appoint as Chief Electoral Officer an individual who has been unanimously recommended for the appointment by a special Committee of the Legislative Assembly.

Impartiality

5 (1) Before beginning to perform the duties of office, the chief electoral officer must make a solemn declaration before the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly to faithfully and impartially exercise the powers and perform the duties of office.

3 The chief electoral officer must not

(a) hold another office or engage in other employment

Resignation, removal or suspension

8 (2) On the recommendation of the Legislative Assembly based on cause or incapacity, the Lieutenant Governor must, in accordance with the recommendation,

(a) suspend the chief electoral officer, with or without salary, or

(b) remove the chief electoral officer from office.

(3) If the Legislative Assembly is not sitting, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may suspend the chief electoral officer, with or without salary, for cause or incapacity.

Election Act Link!
-----
Where are you Carole James?

Where is your anger these days?

Where was your anger during last years election?

Carole James (Nov 20): "I am drawing a line in the sand."

"It’s time now to say, 'Enough.'"

It seems that Carole James gets angry only when her own job is threatened.

Carole James (Nov 20): "Some members in our caucus have disagreed with me as leader and do not support me."

The BC Liberal Party supports Carole James though.

She lost the last two elections to Gordon Campbell.

The BC Liberal Party loves her to death.

On the leadership question, this months Mustel poll puts her only 1 point ahead of Gordon Campbell, the most unpopular premier in BC history.

They love her to death alright.

When's the last time anyone heard a Liberal MLA criticize Carole James?

Anonymous said...

Has anyone else noticed that the cbc has disabled comments on all stories? It seems as though comments on old stories cannot be seen either. Has anyone heard why?

By the way - I feel Bill T could teach Gandhi a thing or two about patience, open mindedness, and never losing your cool. Your stability is appreciated at times like this when it is so easy to get really angry.

RossK said...

I have done the comparative analysis of the 1997 Skeena petition mentioned by 'nruff' above.

Using ' MLA', which appears twice, I get 194 words.

Using 'Member of the Legislative Assembly', I get 202 words.

The analysis can be found here.

.

G West said...

Paul: You need to look at Section 9 - that`s the one that covers the appointment of an acting chief electoral officer...

Section 4 doesn`t apply...Craig James was appointed under Section 9 (note 9 (2) a)

I`ll quote it below:
Acting chief electoral officer
9 (1) On the recommendation of the Legislative Assembly in any of the following circumstances, the Lieutenant Governor must appoint an acting chief electoral officer:

(a) the office of chief electoral officer is vacant;
(b) the chief electoral officer appointed under section 4 is suspended;
(c) the chief electoral officer appointed under section 4 is temporarily absent because of illness or another reason.
(2) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may appoint an acting chief electoral officer in any of the following circumstances:
(a) the office of chief electoral officer is or becomes vacant when the Legislative Assembly is not sitting;
(b) the chief electoral officer appointed under section 4 is suspended when the Legislative Assembly is not sitting;
(c) the chief electoral officer is removed or suspended or the office of the chief electoral officer becomes vacant when the Legislative Assembly is sitting, but no recommendation is made by the Legislative Assembly under subsection (1) or section 4 before the end of the session;
(d) the chief electoral officer appointed under section 4 is temporarily absent because of illness or another reason.
(3) An acting chief electoral officer holds office until the earliest of the following:
(a) a new chief electoral officer is appointed under section 4;
(b) the suspension of the chief electoral officer ends;
(c) the chief electoral officer returns to office after the temporary absence;
(d) in the case of an acting chief electoral officer appointed under subsection (2), when an acting chief electoral officer is appointed under subsection (1);
(e) at the end of 30 sitting days after the start of the next session of the Legislative Assembly.
(4) An individual may be reappointed as acting chief electoral officer in accordance with this section.


Not much anyone - including Carole James - can do about this as long as the legislature is NOT in session.

However, the fact that James was appointed by the LG in C (the Cabinet) and not the Legislature on the unanimous recommendation of the Committee DOES SAY A LOT ABOUT HIS supposed impartiality and loyalty...

In fact, Craig James has had a cozy relationship with the Speaker and it shows!

Anonymous said...

Doesn't this mean Craig James appointment was signed under the hand of Mike De Jong.......

Approved and Ordered June 4, 2010

ORDER IN COUNCIL 313

Ministry Responsible: ATTORNEY GENERAL

Statutory Authority: Election, s. 9 (2) (a)

Effective June 5, 2010, Craig James is appointed acting Chief Electoral Officer.

http://www.qp.gov.bc.ca/statreg/oic/2010/RESUME16.HTM
=======================================

"Committee Activity

On May 6, 2010, the Legislative Assembly established a Special Committee to Appoint a Chief Electoral Officer to recommend a Chief Electoral Officer, as the incumbent’s term expired on June 5. Craig James, Clerk Assistant and Clerk of Committees of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, has temporarily been appointed Acting Chief Electoral Officer until a permanent appointment is found."
http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Sites/LOP/Infoparl/english/issue.asp?param=199&art=1403
===================================

Hon. M. de Jong: I have two

Snip

The second relates to the work of the committee of selection charged with the task of recommending the appointment of a Chief Electoral Officer. Members will know that that work has not been completed thus far, and there is no recommendation from that committee. Pending the completion of that work, it will be necessary to ensure that an acting Chief Electoral Officer is in place to oversee the important responsibilities of that office.

I wanted to take the opportunity to advise the members here before we depart that the Clerk of Committees, Mr. Craig James, has agreed on a temporary basis to serve as acting Chief Electoral Officer for British Columbia. He has agreed to serve in an acting capacity until such time as a permanent Chief Electoral Officer has been appointed. He will not be applying for the position of Chief Electoral Officer, and at the conclusion of his time as acting CEO, he will be returning to the Clerk's table, where he has served this Legislature with distinction for almost 25 years.

I thought members would like to know that, and we are grateful to Mr. James for fulfilling that function on a temporary basis."
http://www.leg.bc.ca/hansard/39th2nd/h00603p.htm

Useless said...

G West, good to see you back. You may have missed my last message for you because I was busy, took me a while to respond and then of course all hell broke loose in both the Liberal and NDP parties prompting several articles from Bill. Anyway, it's there if you want to read it.

Anonymous said...

Craig James has just cut the heart out of democracy. What little of it that was left limping along during the Campbell era is now completely been put to death. After that, like a true coward, he scuttled off to the other institution known as Ottawa to hang out with his brethren, the Harperits.

Cariboo Carl said...

Yep, Craig James is making it up as he goes along for sure. But is FightHST also? What gives, could they have honestly bungled this Recall Statement so badly by accident? First of all, I got the same count as nruff in the 1997 Skeena petition at 201 with James' "rules" and who knows what method of counting they used because it was never mentioned and maybe they didn't even count or just estimated it as being close. Only Craig James seems to think democracy revolves around counting words.

But I checked the FightHST website. Or is it Fight HST or Fight-HST? We'll get back to that. According to the response, James never issued a total word count or specifically said it was rejected because of the "words" MLA and HST although those were among the post word policy factors. So lets look at that word count :

170 regular words + 6 uses of the proper names Gordon, Ida and Chong and the abbreviation Ms is a basic total of 177. Then there are various acronyms (BC, HST and MLA) appearing a total of 10 times, 7 instances of numbers and 4 hyphenated "words" : re-elected, Fight-HST, anti-HST and Bay-Gordon (part of Oak Bay-Gordon Head which was in the statement twice but only hyphenated once). I think we can agree that re-elected is 1 word and Bay-Gordon should be counted as 2. That brings us to 177 + 10 + 7 + 3 = 197 and the status of Fight-HST and anti-HST still must be established.

Of course there is no such word as FightHST except as the name of a tax revolt group and on their own website they clearly in all press releases refer to themselves as Fight HST, no space, no hyphen, two separate words (198, 199) and similarly with anti also being a word it follows that anti-HST is at least two words (200, 201)

That's without even counting BC as 2, HST as 3 and MLA as 5 which would have been an extra 26 words by the way. Oh, and if you want to vehemently argue about anti-HST because you're desperate to save a word, we haven't yet counted the dollar sign that was used in place of a word or even considered the 8 extra words in the numbers.

According to The Vancouver Sun, "Fight HST says the application came in at 180 words. Elections BC will not say what the word count was before acronyms were spelled out." So it appears that whoever was in charge of preparing this statement was either completely out to lunch or deliberately mangled it so they could be tripped up on a stupid technicality and after being delayed in this rush, time sensitive campaign have an excuse for their failure. Don't forget it's not as important in politics to do the right thing as it is to blame someone else when things go wrong.

G West said...

The point is, in my view, that Craig James has no claim to impartiality - which would be the case if he had been appointed 'Chief Electoral Officer'.

That would mean that had been vetted by a Special Committee appointed to select an new chief - the committee must, by law, have the UNANIMOUS agreement of the committee's members - who are chose from both parties in the legislature.

On James's part nothing similar can be claimed because:
a. He neither applied formally for the job nor was he vetted by 'any' committee (see section 9 of the ACT), and;
b. He WAS chosen solely by the Executive Committee - that is the Cabinet - who are, as we have seen, hardly capable of claiming to be impartial themselves, and therefore;
c. This is reflected in James's own words in a letter he wrote to MLA John Horgan - his allegiance is not to the job nor to his duties as acting chief - but to the Speaker of the House and to the House leader of the Government side.

As is always the case in matters such as the above - 'Justice must not only be done - it must appear to be done'


There is NO appearance of Justice in either James's appointment or in his actions as acting chief electoral officer.

Full disclosure said...

The word counting is just the vehicle - the abuse of process is the way this has been handled and that's exactly the same MO James used when he refused to send the petition to the legislative committee forthwith because of a forthcoming court challenge.

The man is either incompetent or he's a tool of the BC Liberals - I suggest everyone make the effort to 'read' his letter to John Horgan before they come to a conclusion about exactly what he is.

You can find the letter here:

http://tinyurl.com/2f4kx2o

Click on 'Letter to John Horgan' at the bottom of that item.

Anonymous said...

Craig James can't count over 200, that's why he changed the Elections BC wording. Hence, James fits right in Campbell's asylum. You would have to be a lunatic, to work for Campbell. It's a requirement, none of the BC Liberal ministers or mla's, are allowed to have a mind of their own. If you can imagine? They all support Campbell's treatment of our BC children, who are so hungry, they can't even do their school work. Way to go BC Lib, ministers and mla's, you will be in the history books, as the stupidest politicians, ever known in Canada, for your support of a monster. No decent person I know, would ever sell their souls, to a ogre, or let a child go hungry. So much for the best place to live. BC has the highest number, of children living in poverty. Take pride, all of you BC Liberals. This is your finest hour. We are aware of Campbell's dirty tactics. That is what, all of you deserve a medal for. Hungry children, can't fight a filthy monster like Campbell.

Anonymous said...

The cbc has still disabled comments on all stories. Has anyone heard why yet? I heard a rumor that they were updating their webpage

DPL said...

Ok folks. Lots of reasons to hate C. James, but what he did is no longer the big issue here. The big issue is that Ida is due to be under the recall gun as soon as the latest application is approved. Now that the word counts etc have been thrashed out, the next recall should be much more smoothly done. When the house finally gets up and running, will be the time for the committee to approve a new person. James says he won't be on the list of applicants. Yes we figure the recall has been sidetracked for awhile, and yes it means more work time and effort for the folks to refile. And yes, we have all no doubt learned a few things about the meaning of the word( one word) manipulation, or possibly different ways to count. And of course we feel shafted by a system. I too want to see the back of Ida and others as they exit stage right. The opposition can and no doubt will, make the apparent manipulation an issue during the house sitting.

Anonymous said...

I for one am not surprised, Campbell and James tampered with words, from Elections BC. Remember, the FOI papers were tampered with. Don't forget what De Jong did regarding, Campbell's corrupt sale of the BCR. Can you imagine, having De Jong or Colin Hansen as premier? The BC Liberal party, is a party of such disgrace, it should be abolished. The good people of BC are, absolutely ashamed of them. Global TV had a program, where teachers said, our BC children are so hungry, they are unable to do their school work. Shame on Harper, for perpetuating, Campbell's treatment, of our hungry BC children. We will not forget this, nor, his part in the HST, come Federal Election time. Canada, has produced the worst crop of politicians, ever remembered in our country. It's the greed and corruption, that governs, this entire country.

Anonymous said...

Craig James can't count over 200, that's why he changed the Elections BC wording"

Wrong. The maximum number of words (200) is set by the Legislation, not by the Acting Chief Electoral Officer. The Legislation was passsed by the NDP, and the 200 word maximum is clearly written into information sheets and the brochure about the process.

It's comical that a few people can't understand what "maximimum" is and then try to write something that is 100 to 130 words which allows for more room.

Anonymous said...

If a Liberal gov is re-elected all their corruption and criminal actions will be kept under the carpet .BC taxpayers will never know and the right wing news outlets,who are on the corporate payroll will be told to keep it quiet. We are not Danny Williams fans but he is leaving politics properly.
In BC it's like the warden(Campbell)giving his inmates a new cell to handle their business. Anyone voting for or supporting this gov prefers corruption over honesty.
Newfoundland,Labrador,and PEI?are putting together a Hydro package that I assume will be carried out by Canadians for Canadians. If Campbell sells out BC Hydro to foreigners that could be an act of TREASON carried out by a psycho.

Anonymous said...

The point is, in my view, that Craig James has no claim to impartiality - which would be the case if he had been appointed 'Chief Electoral Officer'.

"That would mean that had been vetted by a Special Committee appointed to select an new chief - the committee must, by law, have the UNANIMOUS agreement of the committee's members - who are chose from both parties in the legislature."

That exactly what took place.


On James's part nothing similar can be claimed because:
a. He neither applied formally for the job nor was he vetted by 'any' committee (see section 9 of the ACT), and;
b. He WAS chosen solely by the Executive Committee - that is the Cabinet - who are, as we have seen, hardly capable of claiming to be impartial themselves, and therefore;
c. This is reflected in James's own words in a letter he wrote to MLA John Horgan - his allegiance is not to the job nor to his duties as acting chief - but to the Speaker of the House and to the House leader of the Government side."

Wrong. He is not accountable to the House Leader of the Government side. No Chief Electoral Officer is. He or she is accountable to the Legislature as a whole.

James was vetted by a Special Committe which was comprised of a majority from the government side with representatives from the Opposition side (as per parliamentary procedure). Sue Hammell and Bruce Ralston were representatives from the NDP:

http://www.leg.bc.ca/cmt/39thparl/session-2/ceo/5-39-2-12-1.htm

The committee was formed for the purpose of selecting a Chief Returning Officer (in the case of the NDP:

http://www.leg.bc.ca/cmt/39thparl/session-2/ceo/5-39-2-12-2.htm

As is always the case in matters such as the above - 'Justice must not only be done - it must appear to be done'

It was. The procedings were held in camera, no public disclosure of meetings, as per a motion filed by Sue Hammell, NDP and approved:

http://www.leg.bc.ca/cmt/39thparl/session-2/ceo/hansard/Min-CEO-39-2-12-2010-MAY-18.pdf

and

http://www.leg.bc.ca/cmt/39thparl/session-2/ceo/5-39-2-12-7.htm

Cabinet does not make the decision as to who becomes Chief Returning Officer, only the committee can recommend a person.

If you have a problem with the process, write to Bruce Ralston and/or Sue Hammell.




There is NO appearance of Justice in either James's appointment or in his actions as acting

Anonymous said...

" If Campbell sells out BC Hydro to foreigners that could be an act of TREASON carried out by a psycho."

That's comical. Treason in a legal sense can only be done against an entire nation, not a province.

There isn't any policy about selling BC Hydro to forigners.

Strange how there's no concern if ICBC was sold off in pieces to private insurers or private insurers were allowed to sell basic complusory insurance in competition with ICBC.

Anonymous said...

There were two excellent members, of Elections BC, who were shoved out. Campbell installed one of his toads. An "acting" Elections officer, changing the wording of Elections BC, after the recall was submitted??? Mr. James, you are a man, after Campbell's own heart. However, if push comes to shove, Campbell will not hesitate to, cut your throat, as he did to Basi and Virk. You are already in enough trouble, because of Campbell. I have no understanding of why anyone, would destroy their careers, for the likes of Campbell.