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Maryland Democrats Legal Complaint Against GOP Redistricting Referendum 7/24/12

Maryland Democrats Legal Complaint Against GOP Redistricting Referendum 7/24/12

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Published by David Moon

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Published by: David Moon on Jul 24, 2012
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07/24/2012

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DENNISWHITLEY
III
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14706NorthfieldCourt
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Laurel,Maryland20707
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ANNENEAL
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7ColdwaterCourt
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Baltimore,Maryland21204
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KARRENJOPOPE-ONWUKWE
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600143
rd
Street
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Hyattsville,Maryland20781
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JOANNAHANES-LAHR
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6StehleStreet
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Annapolis,Maryland21401
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MATTHEWTHOMAS
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7810NewAscotLane
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Clinton,Maryland20735
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-and-
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MARYLANDDEMOCRATIC
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STATECENTRALCOMMITTEE
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33WestStreet,Suite200
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Annapolis,Maryland21401
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JOHNP.MCDONOUGH
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inhisofficialcapacityas
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SecretaryofState
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16FrancisStreet
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Annapolis,Maryland21401
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*
INTHECIRCUITCOURTFORANNEARUNDELCOUNTY,MARYLANDCASENO.,_
 
LINDAH.LAMONEinherofficialcapacityasStateAdministratorofElections151WestStreetAnnapolis,Maryland21401
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Defendants.
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COMPLAINTFORDECLARATORYANDINJUNCTIVERELIEFPlaintiffsDennisWhitleyIII,AnneNeal,KarrenJoPope-Onwukwe,JoannaHanes-Lahr,MatthewThomasandMarylandDemocraticStateCentralCommittee,byandthroughtheirundersignedattorneys,filethisComplaintforDeclaratoryandInjunctiveReliefandJudicialReviewagainsttheMarylandStateBoardofElections,HonorableJohnP.McDonough,inhisofficialcapacityastheSecretaryofStateofMaryland,andLindaLamone,inherofficialcapacityastheMarylandStateAdministratorofElections.Insupportthereof,Plaintiffsallegethefollowing:
I.
NATUREOFTHEACTION1.ThisisanactionfordeclaratoryreliefandjudicialreviewofadeterminationmadebytheMarylandStateBoardofElections(the"StateBoard")thatthatthenumberofsignaturesonpetitionstoplaceSenateBill1,Chapter1ofthe2011SpecialSessionoftheGeneralAssembly,theCongressionalDistrictingPlan("SenateBill1"),ontheNovember2012generalelectionballotinMarylandmettheminimumrequirementsforholdingareferendumonthatlaw;andfordeclaratoryandinjunctiverelieftoreverseandsetasidethatdeterminationandenjointhereferralofthelawtoreferendum.2.Assetforthbelow,thepetitionsubmittedbythepetitionsponsorstotheSecretaryofState(the"Petition")containedsubstantiallyfewervalidsignaturesthanthe55,736requiredunder
2
 
theMarylandConstitutiontoreferanactoftheGeneralAssemblytoreferendum.Specifically,ofthesignaturessubmittedtoandvalidatedbytheStateBoard,anumberofsignaturesappearonformsonwhichthesigner'sinformationwascomputergenerated,ratherthanprovidedbythesigner,andlackedanyreviewofwhetherthepersonsigningwasactuallythevoterwhoseinformationhadbeenfilledinbycomputer.Anumberofotherpersonssignedpetitionforms(notcomputergenerated)thattheyhadalsosignedascirculator,attestingtothesignaturesaffixedtothepetition.Finally,anumberofadditionalsignaturesdeterminedtobevalidbytheStateBoardareinvalidbecausetheyfailedtomeettherequirementsofstatelawandregulationsinnumerousotherrespects,asallegedbelow.Significantly,morethan5,000ofthetotalnumberofsignaturesfoundvalidbytheStateBoardareactuallyinvalid.3.Accordingly,andforthereasonsexplainedbelow,(1)theStateBoard'sdeterminationunderMd.CodeAnn.,Elec.Law§6-208(a)thatthevalidatedsignaturescontainedinthepetitionaresufficienttosatisfytherequirementsestablishedbylaw,and(2)theStateBoard'scertificationthatthepetitionhasqualifiedSenateBill1tobeplacedonthe2012generalelectionballot,arenotsupportedbysubstantialevidenceandarepremiseduponerroneousconclusionsoflaw.4.PlaintiffsbringthisactioninaccordancewithMd.CodeAnn.,Cts.
&
Jud.Proc.§§1-501and3-403,andMd.CodeAnn.,Elec.Law.§§6-209(a)and6-210(e),seeking:(1)anorderreversingthedeterminationandcertificationoftheStateBoardmadeonJuly20,2012;(2)judgmentdeclaringthatthepetitionforreferralofSenateBill1toreferendumhasnotsatisfiedallrequirementsnecessarytoreferanActoftheGeneralAssemblytothe2012
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