Movement to Recall Filner Underway
A San Diego LGBT activist is leading a movement to recall embattled Mayor Bob Filner -- right on the heels of another previously planned, unrelated effort to recall the mayor.
Stampp Corbin, owner and publisher of “LGBT Weekly,” has initiated a formal effort to recall Filner. As dictated by city recall rules, he officially began the process with a notice of intention, which he published in a newspaper on Friday.
Corbin is the second San Diegan to organize a recall of the mayor, but the first to formally begin the process, amid allegations of sexual harassment involving Filner.
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A couple of weeks ago – right after former allies first accused Filner of sexually harassing multiple women – political activist Michael Pallamary announced he would lead a recall to remove Filner from office.
Pallamary, a longtime Republican Filner opponent, runs the Facebook page, “Recall Bob Filner.”
The page was created on Jun. 21 – before Filner’s sexual harassment scandal came to light.
In a previous interview, Pallamary told NBC 7 he has followed Filner’s career since he became a city councilmember and had been waiting for Filner to give San Diegans a reason to boot him from the mayor’s office.
Over the last two weeks, Pallamary’s Recall Bob Filner page has accumulated thousands of supporters. On Jul. 19, Pallamary held a recruitment rally at City Hall, calling for volunteers for his recall effort.
On Friday, Filner announced that he will undergo two weeks of intensive therapy to correct his behavior. However, he did not resign, as various leaders have requested.
After Filner’s press conference, Pallamary said that if the mayor does not resign by 5:01 p.m. Monday, his formal recall effort would begin.
But, now that Corbin is also leading a separate movement to recall Filner, there is some confusion surrounding the timing of Corbin’s effort, which could be a game-changer.
City rules are unclear on whether two separate recalls could take place simultaneously.
NBC 7 spoke with Corbin on Saturday, who said his effort is misunderstood.
"The fact that I did it one day before these other folks announced yesterday, that they were going to do it on Monday, what difference does that make?" he said.
Corbin said he and Pallamary do not know each, nor are they working together.
“He has not reached out to me. I have not reached out to him,” said Corbin. “I just want this to come to an end."
Corbin claims he started his recall on Friday to bring the quickest end to the chaos, and for no other reason or ulterior motive.
NBC 7 reached out to Pallamary to discuss Corbin's recall effort, but Pallamary said he would not be discussing anything regarding any recall until Monday.
Now, as far as recall rules are concerned, city code requires signatures from 15 percent of voters, or about 101,000 votes, in 60 days in order to get a special election.
The start time is crucial.
According to the recall process outlined by the City Clerk’s office, the clock starts ticking once there is a published notice of intention to circulate a recall petition.
Within 10 days, an affidavit stating that the notice has been published has to be filed with the City Clerk. Within five days, the mayor must be notified, and then, within 14 days, the mayor can respond.
Exactly 21 days after the published notice, the petition can be circulated among voters. The signed petition must be filed within 60 days after the notice of intent is published.
That leaves proponents 39 days to gather signatures from 15 percent of the voters in the city. A minimum of 101,000 signatures will then have to be verified by the City Clerk.
If there is an insufficient number of valid signatures, recall proponents get another try -- by filing a supplemental petition within 30 days.
Again, city rules are unclear on whether two separate recalls could take place at the same time.
Timeline: Filner's Time as Mayor
For his part, Pallamary has previously told NBC 7 that he has experience on his side.
In 1990 he successfully led a recall of city councilmember Linda Bernhardt. At that time, Filner also sat on the council.
On Saturday morning, the following message, in part, was posted to the Recall Bob Filner page by Pallamary:
“In between the rapidly changing landscape, we have a lot of work to do. Please continue reaching out to your friends and neighbors and also remember I did this before and am familiar with the ins and outs of this process. Thank you all for your support and vote of confidence.”