Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Six Bounced From Feb. 24 Ballot by Elizabeth Benjamin - The Daily Politics - NY Daily News

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Elections commissioners voted today to remove from the ballot six of the 22 candidates who filed petitions to run for three vacant City Council seats in the Feb. 24 special elections.

The candidates bounced were:

- Frank Gulluscio (Community First), 32nd CD.

- Glenn DiResto (Families First), 32nd CD.

- Sam Dibernardo (Independent), 32 CD.

- Anthony Cosentino (Common Sense and Experience), 49th CD.

- Rajiv Gowda (People First), 49th CD.

- Angel Del Villar (Community First), 21st CD.

In every case but Dibernardo's, the commissioners were acting based on challenges (generally filed by people close to or representing other candidates).

Dibernardo was far short of the 1,098 signature threshold - he only filed 30 pages of petitions - and the commissioners acted on their own accord to remove him from the ballot.

Former Sen. Marty Connor, who is now a full-time election attorney, which used to be something of a sideline when he was still in office, called in to say he had succeeded in two of the three cases he was handling today.

Connor, whose client is Geraldine Chapey (Community First, 32nd CD), said it was clear Gulluscio didn't have enough signatures after 1,436 of the 2,465 he filed were ruled invalid.

In DiResto's case, Connor reminded the commissioners that statute forbids any candidate to run on a line that uses all or part of an existing political party's name. "Families First" runs afoul of this rule beacuse of the existence of the Working Families Party.

Connor was hoping to bump Eric Ulrich from the ballot, too, but he withstood the challenge and made it onto the ballot. Connor said he plans to go to court Monday both to defend the commission's decisions on DiResto and Gulluscio and to take another crack at Ulrich.