In this week’s edition, readers in the cities of Montebello and Bell Gardens have an opportunity to start getting acquainted with candidates for their local city councils and the Montebello Unified School District Board of Education. Residents of Commerce will also vote for MUSD board members.
We urge the voters in these cities to study the literature and past records of these candidates. Pay close attention to the election campaigns; question the candidates who are out campaigning for your vote. Get informed and then vote.
There is a tendency in some southeast Los Angeles County cities to start recall campaigns against elected officials, sometimes only a few months after a candidate is elected.
We are concerned that some of those who feel the need to push their recall agendas, especially when those efforts take place soon after an election is held, are failing to abide by the decision made by the majority of the voters in their city.
There is a way to replace an elected official after he or she has been given the opportunity and time for their actions to be judged, it’s called an election.
Does this mean that every recall is unwarranted? Absolutely not.
But the recall of elected officials should be reserved for cases when there is evidence of extreme malfeasance, as was the case in the City of Bell not too long ago. Recalls may well be warranted in cases where there is evidence of criminal wrongdoing, political corruption, fraud, or other types of impropriety, but not just because an official is not liked, or disagreement over one policy decision.
Recall elections place a heavy financial burden on a city’s budget; elections aren’t cheap.
Before supporting a recall effort, voters need to ask themselves if the person being targeted for recall has been proven unfit for the job, or is it just sour grapes, or worse yet, a grab for power on the part of someone in the recall group?
That is why it is so critical for voters to get to know the candidates running for office, and to follow their actions once elected.
EGP believes in the democratic electoral process and the people’s right to have a say in what government does. With that right comes great responsibility.
Recalls are rarely, if ever, productive.