The following Press Release was just received by the Michigan Report:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Chris Nelson (248) 535-8579
CONTACT: Joe Green (248) 705-9434
Oakland County – Today Oakland County Republican leaders praised Ruth Johnson for her effective leadership as Oakland County Clerk and asked her to fulfill the remainder of her term so that the Presidential Election in 2012 and redistricting of the county commission is not threatened by a new clerk with ties to ACORN.
Ruth Johnson recently became a leading contender for the Republican nomination for Secretary of State. She would have to vacate the position of Oakland County Clerk upon winning the General Election.
The method for filling the vacancy is as follows:
MICHIGAN ELECTION LAW (EXCERPT)
Act 116 of 1954
168.209 County office; vacancy; manner of filling.
If a vacancy occurs in an elective or appointive county office, it shall be filled in the following manner:
(1) If the vacancy is in the office of county clerk or prosecuting attorney, it shall be filled by appointment by the judge or judges of that judicial circuit.
Oakland County Circuit Judge Nanci Grant would preside over the appointment of the new Oakland County Clerk. Grant’s husband ran in 2008 for Oakland County Probate Judge and had the endorsement of the Oakland County Democratic Party, and the support of numerous labor unions and left-wing Political Action Committees (PAC’s).
The frontrunner to replace Johnson in Oakland County is Sheila Smith; her 2008 Democratic opponent — the Michigan statewide coordinator of ACORN. Ruth Johnson and the Republicans barely won re-election in 2008 over Smith and the Democrats by approximately 1% of the vote.
“Ruth Johnson has been a tremendous County Clerk for Oakland County and we need her to stay in that role for redistricting and the Presidential Election”, said Waterford Township Republican Director for the 9th Congressional District Chris NELSON. “Oakland County Republicans and Michigan Republicans cannot afford for Sheila Smith and ACORN to control the Oakland County Clerk’s office.”
Nelson further stated, “Johnson has been a great County Clerk. We need Ruth to stand tall for us on the Reapportionment Commission since it will impact our County Commission district lines for the next ten years. If a Democrat replaces her the Reapportionment Commission will be overwhelmingly weighted toward the Democrats. With Ruth staying as our County Clerk we have a fighting chance for fair County Commission district lines.”
West Bloomfield Republican Director for the 9th Congressional District Joe GREEN said something similar, “Without Ruth Johnson as our County Clerk fair and honest vote tabulation for the 2012 presidential election in Oakland County is in doubt if the Democrats pick up this seat via a liberal appointment by the Oakland Circuit Court Judges. Additionally, our hopes of retaining GOP control of the County Commission will be lost for ten years with a huge Democrat majority on the Reapportionment Commission. We need Ruth to stay in her important office as Oakland County Clerk.”
Judge Grant and the other judges who make up the liberal majority of the Oakland County Circuit Court will be pressed by their Democrat allies to vote for Smith to replace Johnson in the fall. This would give control of the Oakland County Clerk’s office to the Democrat Party and put them in the driver’s seat of Oakland County elections in time for the 2012 Presidential Election.
The election of Ruth Johnson as Secretary of State would also threaten Oakland County Republicans ability to regain control of the Oakland County Board of Commissioners because the Oakland County Clerk has a large role in the redistricting process:
Michigan Compiled Laws Annotated Current ness
Chapter 46. County Boards of Commissioners
Apportionment of County Boards of Commissioners
46.403. County apportionment commission; composition; convening; rules
Of procedure; quorum; majority; meetings; availability of writings to public
Sec. 3. (1) The county apportionment commission shall consist of the county clerk, the county treasurer, the prosecuting attorney, and the statutory county chairperson of each of the 2 political parties receiving the greatest number of votes cast for the office of secretary of state in the last preceding general election. If a county does not have a statutory chairperson of a political party, the 2 additional members shall be a party representative from each of the 2 political parties receiving the greatest number of votes cast for the office of secretary of state in the last preceding general election and appointed by the chairperson of the state central committee for each of the political parties. The clerk shall convene the apportionment commission and they shall adopt their rules of procedure. Three members of the apportionment commission shall be a quorum sufficient to conduct its business. All action of the apportionment commission shall be by majority vote of the commission.
The Oakland County Board of Commissioners is currently deadlocked 12-12 because of the recent passing of Republican Commissioner Jeff Potter R –South Lyon.
The Election of Ruth Johnson as Secretary of State could potentially put the 2012 presidential campaign at risk and severely threaten the Republican Party’s chances of regaining control of the Oakland County Board of Commissioners.