From: Joseph Wells - Cetero Research Sent: Wednesday, March 24, 2010 4:03 PM To: 'soselect@nd.


Cc: 'Nancy Wells'

SubJect: Questions re: recall in North Dakota

I have some questions for you re: a recall of a Senator in North Dakota.

1. According to what I have read;

Every recall petition must have a sponsoring committee of five individuals and a chairman.

This would require a committee of 6 with a Chairman contained in the group of 6, right? And this is strictly 'informal' if I understand it. They do not need to register as a committee or incorporate somehow, right? They just appoint themselves as a committee.

2. Can the reason of recall be a simple sentence of explanation, or does it face a test from you or others, or is it scrutinized by someone and accepted or rejected?

3. The recall process notes;

Then the Secretary of State will print up signature forms to be distributed. The petition will then be able to be circulated among the voters of the electoral district of the official being recalled.

I assume that signatures can only be taken of people in the politicians district, is that right? And if you were to need 25% of the total number of people voting for Governor from the Senators district last election to sign your petition, who would decide what that number is, and where does it come from? Is that your decision?

Thanks for taking the time to answer these important questions for me. I called and left a message on your phone re: this same issue. Please reply to this e-mail or call me at 701-205- 0449.

Thanks again;

Joe Wells

3309 17th Ave S. #201

Fargo, N.D. 58103

From: Joseph Wells - Cetero Research [] Sent: Thursday, March 25, 2010 10:48 AM

To: -Info-50S Elections

Subject: FW: Questions re: recall in North Dakota


Yesterday, I sent this e-mail to you and followed up with a phone call, and you answered my questions over the phone.

Would it be possible for you to state your position in writing as regards the recall vote we talked about, and how you believe it is not applicable to be used in North Dakota for U.S. Congressmen?

Thanks, I appreciate it.

Joe Wells

3309 17th Ave S. #201

Fargo, N.D. 58103




i .


PHONE (701) 328-2900 FAX (701) 328-2992






March 25, 2010

Joe Wells

3309 17th Avenue S # 201 Fargo NO 58103~4569

Dear Mr. Wells,

You have asked.our office for the procedures by which a member of the Congress of the United States of America could be recalled from the office they hold. This Is not the first time we have received such an Inquiry.

Consequently, my office and our legal counsel, the Attorney General's office, have previously researched the matter. We found no current procedures that exist to recall a member of Congress under the constitutions of North Dakota and the United States of America or under the respective state or federal laws. The current provisions of Section 10 of Article III of the North Dakota Constitution only apply to state offices and not to federal congressional offices. The qualifications for federal congressional offices are governed under the nation's constitution.

Therefore, my office cannot provide the Information you are seeking since no recall procedures exist In North Dakota fot a member of Congress.

The_American Civil

.. Rights Union


Hon. Robert B~ Carleson

Policy Board

Hon. Edwin Meese, III

Hon. Willhun Bradford Reynolds Amb. Curtin Winsor, Jr. Professor James Q. WIlson

. Professor Walter E. Williams Dean J. Clayburn laforce, Jr. Dean Kenneth W. Starr

Members Emeritus Judge RoberfH. Bork

Hon. Linda L. chavez

Hon. Kenneth Y. Tomlinson

Board of Directors

Susan A. Carleson Chairman

Hon. Edwin Meese,lII Wendy Borcherdt Leroy Morton C. Blackwell David A. Leedom


Susan A. Carleson CEO I Treasurer

Peter J. Ferrara Legal Director I

General Counsell Secretary

r(1.ECEIVED APR 05 2010! t)'t:C. OF STATE

"Protecting the civil rights of all Americans:'

April 2, 2010

Mr. Al Jaeger Secretary of State State of North Dakota

\ .'

600 East Boulevard Avenue

Dept. 108

Bismarck, North Dakota 58505~0500

Dear Mr. Jaeger:

I write in regard to your letter of March 25,2010 to Mr. Joe Wells concerning the possible recall of North Dakota Senator Kent Conrad.

I note that the office of Secretary of State of North Dakota includes no power to issue constitutional rulings, whether regarding the Constitution of North Dakota or the United States Constitution. The Secretary of State is compelled solely to follow applicable North Dakota state law. The office has no power to cast words out of the North Dakota Constitution, or to declare any portion of its own state's Constitution unconstitutional.

The North Dakota Constitution provides for the recall of "all elected officials.'" Since Senator Kent Conrad is an elected official, the specified recall procedures in North Dakota law apply to any recall the people of North Dakota wish to pursue against him. The discretion in this matter lies solely with the people of North Dakota, and not with the office of Secretary of State.

Moreover, there is not a syllable any where in the Constitution of the United States that prohibits recall of members of Congress. The U.S. Constitution is silent on the matter, except in the Tenth Amendment, which provides that any powers not delegated to the United States, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people; In addition, there is no Supreme Court ruling, or any other binding precedent, which holds that recall of members of Congress is unconstitutional. In the absence of any federal lawto the contrary, the Secretary of State's office is unequivocally compelled to follow North Dakota law.

3213 Duke Street #625


Alexandria, VA 22314

Phone: S77.730.ACRU

': "".

Fax: 703.566.2322

I note further that rather than prohibiting recall, the U.S. Constitution protects the circulation and signature of recall petitions as political expression and as the petitioning of government for the redress of grievances. I bring to your attention the enclosed recent decision of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, which consequently held that recall petitions against New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez could go forward in that state, reversing an attempted constitutional ruling by that state's Secretary of State holding that her own state's constitution was unconstitutional.


AI Jaeger

Secretary of State State of North Dakota

600 E Boulevard Ave Dept 108, 1 st Floor Bismarck ND 58505·0500


Mr. Jaeger,

Enclosed please find a copy of our Committee's 'first draft' of our petition to recall Kent Conrad. On the example, you will find the names and addresses of our committee members as is required by law.

We found your web site very helpful, and have based our example entirely upon your recommendations found there.

If there are any changes that need to be made to it, please let me know so we can correct them in a timely manner. My contact information is below.

Thanks again,

Joseph Wells

3309 17th Ave. South Apt. #201

Fargo, N.D. 58103

(701) 205-0449







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