The committee seeking to recall L.A. County District Attorney George Gascón filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, claiming the office has placed restrictions against its review of invalidated petition signatures and contending that numerous signatures were wrongfully invalidated.
The Recall District Attorney George Gascón campaign has been reviewing invalidated signatures since Sept. 30 after the committee submitted petitions bearing approximately 717,000 signatures in July.
The Registrar-Recorder’s Office determined that 520,050 of those signatures were valid, but that the petition campaign had failed to meet the threshold necessary to put it on the ballot by almost 47,000 signatures.
During the review of the invalidated signatures, Recall Gascón campaign officials said there are several concerns with the processes done to discount them – and are alleging many of them are unlawful.
“The initial review of invalidated signatures demonstrates the registrar’s counting process was seriously flawed, resulting in substantial errors, the wrongful invalidation of many valid signatures, and the disenfranchisement of thousands of Los Angeles County voters,” read a statement that accompanied the complaint. “These extremely disturbing findings necessitate a complete and timely review of all invalidated signatures. This review is currently being obstructed by the registrar’s office.”
The lawsuit is asking for injunctive relief, also known as an injunction, which “restrains a party from doing certain acts or requires a party to act in a certain way,” according to Cornell Law School’s definition of the term.
The campaign is also alleging that restrictions placed on its review – by the registrar’s office – could delay their efforts by up to a year by “limiting review hours, workstations, number of reviewers, access to information necessary to determine the legitimacy of a signature invalidation, and more.” The campaign has called these restrictions “arbitrary and capricious.”
“Given the troubling findings from the initial review of invalidated signatures, it is imperative that a complete and timely review of all invalidated signatures be permitted to take place,” read the campaign’s statement.
The campaign is also alleging the county has inflated the amount of registered voters in the county, citing “estimates from independent and non-partisan data analysts, L.A. County active voter rolls were artificially inflated by at least 208,000, and as much as 515,000.” The campaign also alleges the county had not removed the names of people who had died out of state but were still registered within the county.
In 2019, L.A. County and the state of California had to remove 1.5 million inactive voter registrations as part of a court settlement with a conservative activist group called Judicial Watch.
The county registrar’s office has declined to comment on the matter
A complete copy of the Recall Gascón lawsuit can be found at bit.ly/3TL34iX.