Monday, October 31, 2016

Curtis Sliwa Faction Wins NY Reform Party Leadership

In 2014, Rob Astorino, the Republican Party's nominee in that year's Gubernatorial Election, petitioned to create the “Stop Common Core Party,” a single-issue ballot line designed to declare opposition to the Common Core State Standards Initiative.

Under New York State Law, the Stop Common Core Party would qualify to automatically appear on the ballot for every Election through 2018 if it received at least 50,000 votes in the Gubernatorial election, a threshold it narrowly achieved despite Astorino's overall loss.

On February 17, 2015, Astorino announced he would change the name of the party to the "Reform Party" to broaden its appeal beyond a single issue. The party initially ran into opposition from the Conservative Party of New York State, who balked at allowing another ballot line to cross-endorse its candidates.

Marie Smith was made the Chairman of the New York State Reform Party (NYSRP).

Marie Smith stepped down, and Bill Merrell was elected on January 12, 2016.

The NYSRP as authorized by the National Reform Party is in full support and cooperatively working together to benefit all members of the Reform Party. The NYSRP has added its opposition to Common Core to its web site and values page.

National Reform Party Presidential candidate Rocky De La Fuente is not on the NYSRP line and is running in the State as a write-in candidate.

No candidate appears on the State Reform Party's Presidential ballot.

On October 27, a New York State Supreme Judge in Albany County ruled that the Reform Party’s Organizational meeting of September 24, 2016, is valid.

There are two factions in the Reform Party of New York. The faction that held the Organizational meeting declined to choose any Presidential Elector candidates, and elected Curtis Sliwa as State Chair. Sliwa is best known for having founded the Anti-Crime group Guardian Angels.

The other faction is beholden to the New York Republican Party and has generally nominated candidates for District and County office who are also Republican Party nominees.

The attendees at the Sliwa faction’s meeting had all been Elected at the September 13, 2016 Primary to the NYSRP State Committee.

The other faction challenged the meeting on the grounds that, potentially, there were 456 members of the Party’s State Committee that might have been elected in the September Primary.

But the decision points out that the 2015 Party rules did not say the Party needs to elect a State Committee in every single District in the State.

Because 16 of the 18 actual members of the State Committee participated in the September 24 meeting, which is more than the required two-thirds quorum, the Judge said the meeting was valid.

The Judge also said that the people who filed the lawsuit to invalidate the meeting had failed to serve one of the 18 members, and had failed to serve the Reform Party itself, which also means that the lawsuit should be dismissed.

The case is Merrell v Sliwa, Albany Co., 5829-16.

The outcome: The National Reform Party lost control of the State Party when Curtis Sliwa and Frank Morano led a coup of the Party, installing Sliwa as Chairman.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker
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