Ranked Choice Voting Ballot Petition Case to MN Supreme Court
In June, the Bloomington City Clerk confirmed the validity of 3300 registered voters out of the 3600 signers on a petition circulated by Residents for a Better Bloomington (RFABB) asking for the repeal of Ranked Choice Voting on the November 2022 ballot.
On August 8, 2022, the Bloomington City Council refused the petition. The Council claimed that one of the petition provisions was illegal. In the words of the Bloomington City Attorney, that provision is "manifestly unconstitutional." (Side note: the same provision-wording was part of the garbage petition years earlier but was never flagged then as being illegal.)
The council found nothing wrong with rest of the RCV petition.
The Upper Midwest Law Center, led by Doug Seaton, and attorneys James Dickey and Gregory Joseph, met with the RFABB Board. They resolved to work with the residents of Bloomington to correct an error that they believed the city made.
Three residents brought a lawsuit in District Court to correct that error, but the District Court denied the petition. That case is Court file 27 cv 22 12278.
The very next morning, a petition for accelerated review by the Supreme Court was filed. While a mere 8-10% of all appeals are accepted by the Minnesota Supreme Court, on August 30th, Chief Justice Lorie Gildea issued an order to grant the petition for accelerated review. She however indicated that oral arguments would be held on November 28th, after the November 2022 election. Apparently, the issues brought by Mr. Joseph and Mr. Dickey warrant a more thorough consideration by Minnesota’s highest court. The Supreme Court case is A22-1190.
The issue being appealed is not the “manifest unconstitutionality” of the fourth provision in this RCV Charter petition, but rather the much broader issue of severability of a problem provision for all Charter City resident petitions in Minnesota.
This case asks the court to make crystal clear that, in any petition brought in this state before a local charter government, the local officials (with the cooperation the petitioners) may sever parts of a petition that may be deemed as unconstitutional or unlawful if the rest of the petition is not “substantially emasculated”.
The rest of the petition should then remain intact to present to the voters. This is the case with Bloomington’s petition. This would provide a more collaborative and trusting relationship between city government and its residents. It just makes sense.Read more
Republicans Out of Bloomington Heritage Days Parade
Senate District 50 Republicans (SD50 GOP) have marched in the Bloomington Heritage Days Parade for years, but they will not march this year.
The SD50 GOP registered for the parade in June and awaited word from the organizers of its approved position. The Heritage Days Board finally notified the SD50 GOP volunteers on August 31st that the application was, in essence, denied. Their reply said that “We are not accepting registrations for political office this year.”
In reply, the SD50 GOP noted that the organization is a nonprofit that does not represent any candidates. The Board representative answered that “We make no distinction between candidates and those who support them. Heritage Days is not accepting entries for political office this year.“
The SD50 GOP wishes to thank all of the volunteers that expressed an interest in marching in the parade this year. And hopes that the decision will be to return to more inclusive rules next year.
Volunteers are urged to give of their time to candidates and join them on Saturday, September 17 to door-knock in Bloomington. Sign-up on the SD50 Volunteer Opportunities page.Read more
Volunteers Sought for Republican Booths at State Fair
There are at least two volunteer opportunities at the MN GOP Booth at the State Fair. The response has been very strong. However, it is still possible to get your fair entrance fee covered if you volunteer to work a four-hour shift on either Thursday evening, August 25, or Saturday evening, August 27,
The shifts run from 4:30 to 8:30 pm and are available first-come-first-served. Please contact Jordyn Berwald, MN GOP booth coordinator, at [email protected] or (763) 280-4126.
Alternatively, consider volunteering to work at a booth sponsored by one of our state-wide candidates. For example, Ryan Wilson, Republican candidate for MN Auditor, will have a booth. If you have questions, or wish to volunteer, please contact Jennifer DeJournett at [email protected], (612) 384-1479.
Walk Your Neighborhood with our Candidates
Our candidates are already knocking on doors in our district. Tom Weiler, Doug Fulton, Beth Beebe, and many other local candidates know that to win this election year, they need to meet and talk with your neighbors. They are going out almost every evening and on Saturdays because there are a lot of doors that need to be knocked.
You could make it much easier for them. These are your candidates out trying to meet your neighbors.
You can go out with them when they are in or near your precinct. It always goes faster when you go out together.
Better yet, plan an evening when you invite your neighbors down to your driveway or your backyard to meet the candidates. Grill some hotdogs or serve some ice cream while the weather is warm. Do it on a Saturday or a weeknight evening.Read more
Do You Know Your Voting Location, Alternatives for August 9 Primary?
Local voting locations (“polling stations”) will be open from 7 am to 8 pm on Tuesday, August 9 for the Primary Election. Please note that where you vote may have changed since the last time you voted. Both Edina and Bloomington made major changes in precinct boundaries after the “redistricting” (redrawing of legislative district boundaries) that occurred earlier this year. Other metro-area cities also made changes.
So, even though you didn’t move and your street address did not change, this redistricting could mean that you will be voting in a different location. For an overview of how the precinct boundaries have changed in Bloomington and Edina, CLICK HERE . For more specific information on your own voting location, enter your address into the Secretary of State poll finder before you go to vote.
We highly recommend that you vote in-person to ensure that you can place your ballot directly into a ballot counter. Voting on August 9 is best, but you can also place your ballot directly into a ballot counter if you vote at your local city hall Aug 1 – 8 (the week prior to Primary election day) If you vote earlier than the week prior, your ballot will be placed in a double envelope, to be counted later by Hennepin County.
If you wish to (or must) vote early, absentee and early voting is now open in Minnesota. Mail-in ballots must be received by August 9 to be counted. To request a mail-in absentee ballot, eligible voters must complete an online application at mnvotes.org which is the Minnesota Secretary Of State - Elections & Voting page.Read more
Why Your Vote in the Primary is Very Important
If you doubt the importance of your vote in the upcoming Primary election this year, consider this: your vote in the Primary may very well ensure you have a meaningful choice of candidates for state-wide offices and Hennepin County offices in November.
The following Republican-endorsed candidates for state-wide office have primary challengers to determine who will be on the Republican Party ballot::
• Governor/Lt Governor -- Dr. Scott Jensen/Matt Birk
• MN Attorney General – Jim Schultz
• MN Secretary of State – Kim Crockett
Hennepin County Primary Election is Equally Important
The following Republican-recommended candidates for Hennepin County office are running in “non-partisan” races (see the back of your Primary ballot) in which only the two candidates with the highest Primary vote count will go on to the November ballot:
• Hennepin County Attorney – Tad Jude
• Hennepin County Sheriff – Jai Hanson
CLICK HERE to find these recommendations on a sample ballot you can take with you and use while voting.