Capo recall gets way too many signatures, in way too little time.

UPDATE 5/4/10 – New, fairer poll:

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Capo Trustees Winsten & Maddox - up you-know-what creek without a you-know-what.

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Can’t get over that poll – since January, over 400 of you have taken it, and 84% want to see these two recalled.  Oh, right – today’s news.  Recall advocates had 160 days to collect 22,000 signatures to recall these two knuckle-dragging foes of education this November;  they managed to get 32,000 in SIXTY days. Talk about overkill – reminds me of this poll.  Here, check out the press release (hat-tip to the OC Progressive’s tireless Heather) :

For Immediate Release May 2, 2010

Over the past 60 days, petitions have been circulated within the Capistrano Unified School District to recall Mike Winsten and Ken Maddox from the CUSD Board of Trustees. Parents for Local Control is pleased to announce that, as of May 2, 2010, more than 32,000 signatures have been collected on recall petitions for both Winsten and Maddox.

Unlike previous recall attempts, the current effort was accomplished using only volunteers. The recall was financed from individuals living within CUSD, most of whom donated up to $99 to Parents for Local Control. Less than $10,000 was spent for printing, advertising and other costs.

The Orange County Registrar of Voters allowed 160 days to collect 22,000 valid signatures for each of the trustees being recalled. We began on March 1, 2010. Parents for Local Control collected over 32,000 signatures in less than 60 days in order to qualify this recall for the November 2, 2010 General Election ballot. There is minimal cost for the recall election if it is part of the November General Election. In contrast, the June 2008 Recall election that first elected Trustee Maddox cost CUSD almost $800,000 and was scheduled just weeks after the June primary election and only a few months before the November 2008 General Election. The $800,000 for this unnecessary election came directly out of the CUSD general fund and therefore out of the classrooms. Parents for Local Control refuses to force a special election and place this recall on the General Election ballot.

Over 80% of the volunteers who circulated the recall petitions were parents. Petition signatures were gathered from voters living in all areas and communities within the Capistrano Unified School District. The teachers “union” (CUEA, CTA, NEA) was not involved in initiating, planning, organizing or financing this recall effort. Parents for Local Control has maintained a strict distance from other groups active within CUSD.

No other recall effort has attempted to qualify a recall in less than half of the allowable time or without paid signature gatherers. The fact that volunteers collected over 10,000 more petition signatures than needed in less than two months is unprecedented. Parents for Local Control will submit all petitions and signatures to the OC Registrar of Voters later this month to allow sufficient time to verify the signatures and permit the recall election to be scheduled for the November ballot. Signature gathering will continue up to the time that the petitions are submitted to the Registrar of Voters.

Years of broken promises, out of control spending, secret meetings, and votes to award financial settlements to individuals that financially supported their campaigns has created the necessity to remove Trustees Winsten and Maddox from office before they complete their terms. The voters of South Orange County are highly motivated to remove and replace both Ken Maddox and Mike Winsten from the CUSD Board of Trustees at the earliest possible opportunity.

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official political troubadour of Anaheim and most other OC towns. Regularly makes solo performances, sometimes with his savage-jazz band The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.