For Immediate Release
August 18, 2008
Contact: Don Cookson
Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap Announces People's Veto Certification Results
Augusta- Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said this afternoon the organization operating under the name Fed Up With Taxes submitted a sufficient number of signatures of registered voters to satisfy the statutory requirements for a People's Veto question to appear on statewide ballots November 4, 2008 . “After careful scrutiny, the Bureau of Elections has determined Fed Up With Taxes has submitted 72,432 valid signatures,” Dunlap said, continuing, “this exceeds the required number by more than 17,000.”
The group's veto effort is aimed at legislation entitled “An Act to Continue Maine 's Leadership in Covering the Uninsured”. The question approved for inclusion on Maine ballots reads “ Do you want to reject the parts of a new law that change the method of funding Maine 's Dirigo Health Program through charging health insurance companies a fixed fee on paid claims and adding taxes to malt liquor, wine, and soft drinks?”
“Fed Up With Taxes submitted nearly 12,000 petitions containing in excess of 95,000 signatures to this office between July 15 and 17, 2008,” Dunlap explained, noting
“an exhaustive review of those petitions resulted in 22,788 signatures being found to be invalid. Both people's veto petitions and citizen initiated legislation petitions are subjected to the utmost scrutiny, as our office conducts the only complete review of petitions submitted for these purposes. I am confident the review process was as effective as it was thorough.”
The complete text of the Secretary of State's determination appears below.
STATE OF MAINE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE
DETERMINATION OF THE VALIDITY OF A PETITION FOR PEOPLE'S VETO OF LEGISLATION ENTITLED:
“An Act To Continue Maine 's Leadership in Covering the Uninsured”
- On July 15, 16 and 17, 2008, petitions containing 95,220 signatures were submitted to the Secretary of State pursuant to the Constitution of Maine, Article IV, Part Third, Section 17 on behalf of the people's veto on the legislation entitled, “An Act To Continue Maine 's Leadership in Covering the Uninsured”.
- Following a review of the petitions I find the following signatures to be invalid for the following reasons:
- 15,856 signatures are invalid because they were not certified by the registrar as belonging to a registered voter in that municipality.
- 3,231 signatures are invalid because the voter's signature was withdrawn from the petition.
- 928 signatures are invalid because they are duplicates of signatures already counted.
- 653 signatures are invalid because the petition was not on the approved form.
- 612 signatures are invalid because the circulator's oath was not complete or not administered properly.
- 412 signatures are invalid because the circulators collected signatures prior to becoming registered to vote in the State of Maine .
- 389 signatures are invalid because the circulator's status as a registered voter in the State of Maine could not be confirmed.
- 228 signatures are invalid because the voter dated his or her signature after the date of the circulator's oath before the notary or the voter's signature was not dated and it could not be determined that the voter signed the petition before the circulator took the oath.
- 153 signatures are invalid because of material alterations to the petition.
- 144 signatures are invalid because the petition was submitted to the municipal registrar for determination of whether the petitioners were qualified voters after the deadline set by the Maine Constitution, Article IV, Part Third, Section 20.
- 99 signatures are invalid because the petitioner failed to provide a signature.
- 51 signatures are invalid because the circulator's status as a resident of the State of Maine could not be confirmed.
- 27 signatures are invalid because the registered voter's signature was made by another.
- 5 signatures are invalid because the certification of the registrar was not completed.
- For the reasons set forth above, I find that 22,788 signatures are invalid. Petitioners have therefore submitted 72,432 valid signatures. The number of signatures required to determine the petition to be valid is 55,087. Because the number of valid signatures exceeds the required number by 17,345 signatures, I find the petition to be valid.