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Judicial Watch • Dennis Whitley III v. MD BOE

Dennis Whitley III v. MD BOE

Dennis Whitley III v. MD BOE

Page 1: Dennis Whitley III v. MD BOE

Category:Lawsuit

Number of Pages:19

Date Created:August 10, 2012

Date Uploaded to the Library:May 08, 2015

Tags:Circuit Court, maryland


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DENNIS WHITLEY III, al. THE
Plaintzffr CIRCUIT COURT FOR
MARYLAND STATE BOARD ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY
ELECTIONS, all
CASE NO.: 02-C-I2-171365
Dqfendzznfs >1!
lrIElIORANDUlI OPINION
This matter came before the Court August 10, 2012 for ltearlng Plaintiffs Motion
for Summary Judgment, Defendants Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment, and lntctvenor
Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgtnettt, The Court held the matter sub cu/10.
Upon consideration the written and oral arguments the parties, the Court presents its
conclusions below
BACKGROUND October 20, 2011, the General Assembly passed and the Governor signed into law
Senate Bill SB. which established new congressional districts for the House
Representatives the state Maryland. Following the passage SB. lntervenor
MDPetitionsteom began collecting signatures petition the act referendum the 2012
general election ballot, pursuant Article XVI the Maryland Constitution. its signziture collection efforts, Intervcnor employed both volunteer circulators who
obtained signatures person and its website http://wwwtn1dpeti tions.con1, wherein those Artiele XVI states:
(a) The people reserve themselves power known The Refcrenduin, petition have submitted the
registered voters the State, approve reject the polls, any Act, part any Act the General
Axsetuibly, approved the Governor or, passed the General Assembly over the veto the
Governor.
interested signing the petition could print out signature page, sign it, sign t1e circulator
affidavit, and return lntervenor for collection and transmission the Secretary State for
certi cation the petition May 31, 2012, lntervenor submitted 28,477 signatures for the petition refer SB.
The local election hoards certi 26,763 signatures valid and l,7l4 invalid. Defendant
Maryland State Board Elections MSBB accepted those gures without conducting its own
review the signatures. June 30, 2012, Intervene: submitted additional 36,267
signatures, out which the local boards certi 32,438 valid and 5,935 invalid. MSBE
again accepted the local boards determination without further review. July 20, 2012, MSBE
concluded that MT)Petitions.com had submitted 59,201 valid signatures and 7,649 invalid
signatures, and eeiti S.B. placed the 2012 general election ballot. July 24,
2012, Plaintiffs led their Complaint for Declaratory and Injunetivc Relief. August 2012,
Plaintiffs led their Motion for Summary Judgment. August 2012, Defendants MSBE,
John MeDonough, and Linda Lamonc led Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment and
Declaratory Judgment Favor Defendants. Also August lnteivenor led its Cross-
Molion Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgment} the August hearing, the Court heard
arguments the three Motions for Summary Judgment.
STANDARD REVIEW
Title the Election Law Article governs matters related State Board determination
with respect petition for referendum, including judicial review and declaratory and affidavit the cireulatuor the signature pages petition required Article XVI the Maryland
Cunxtilutinn, Section 6-204 the Maryland Code, and COMAR 33.06.133.08. The requirements under each are
suhstzmtislly similar, and discussed further detail i.nor attempted present claim for affirmative relief its Motion and oral argument regarding MSBLl
invalidation 840 signatures based the format the petitions. InIcrvonur claim that point not only
untimely and impt opeJly pleaded, but also regarding few signatures that ruling the issue would have
hearing the outcome this case. The Court therefore did not consider this claim.
injunctivc relief. See Mo. Coon ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-101 seq. Under Section 6-209 that
Article, two different types ofjudieial review petition are possible. The first option allows
person aggrieved the State l3oard certification statewide referendum petition
General Assembly enactment seek judicial review. MD. Conn ANN, ELEC. LAW
209(a)(l)(i). that situation, [t]he court may grant relief considers appropriate assure
the integrity the electoral process. MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-2l)9(a)(2). Under the
second option, pursuant the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act, MD. CODE ANN,,
Crs, IUD. PROC. 3-401 .seq., any registered voter can seek declaratory relief any
petition under Title other provision law. MD. CODE Ai1N., ELMC. LAW 6~209(b). When
seeking relief under the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act, justiciable issue
prerequisite requesting declaratory relief. Anne /Irzmdel County Ebenrbe/get Md. App,
360, 367-68 (1985).
The scope judicial review administrative decision narrow; limited
determining there substantial evidence the record whole support the agencys
ndings and conclusions, and determin[ing] the administrative decision promised upon
erroneous conclusion law. Avinlia/1 Admin. Noland, 386 Md. 556, 571 (2005).
reviewing court could reasonably have reached the agency conclusion, should not overturn
that decision unless reversal predicated solely error law. State Election B51.
Billliimer, 314 Md. 46, (1988). the instant case, the issues presented the Court are statutory interpretation, and
therefore questions law. See Montgomery County Valzmteer tre Rcscue A.ss
Montgomery Co1mtyBd. ofElec1ionr, 418 Md. 463, 469 (2011). Ordinarily,
[A] court task review not substitute its judgment for the expertise
those persons who constitute the administrative agency. Even with regard
some legal issues, degree deference should often accorded the position
the administrative agency. Thus, administrative agencys interpretation and
application the statute which the agency administers should ordinarily given
considerable weight reviewing courts.
Aviation Admin. Noland, 386 Md. 556, 571-72 (2005) (internal quotation marks and citations
omitted, emphasis original). However, when statute clear and unambiguous, the Court
does not defer the Board interpretation. ire-Rc.rcue, 418 Md. 469. When statutory
provision entirely clear, with ambiguity whatsoever, administrative constructions, matter
how well entrenched, are not given weiglit. Id. (quoting viatimz Admin. Noland, 386 Md.
572)
Under Maryland Rule 2~501(a), [a]ny party may make motion for summary judgment all part action the ground that there genuine dispute any material fact
and that the party entitled judgment matter law. the trier fact can arrive
more than one conclusion based genuine issue material fact, any deduced inferences,
summary judgrnent not appropriate. Sadler Dimensiom Ilealtlicare Carp., 378 Md. 509,
533 (2003). the instant case, there are disputed material facts, the Court
determination based whether Plaintiffs are entitled judgment matter lav. Md.
Rule 2-501 (a).
PRELIMINARY ISSUES its Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment, lntervenor challenges the standing
Plaintiffs Dennis Whitley [11, Anne Neal, Karren Pope-Onukwe, Joanna Hanes-Lahr, Matthew
Thomas Registered Voter Plaintiffs), and Maryland Democratic State Central Committee MSBE did not concede the accuracy the number signatures challenged [laintiFl but stipulated its
Answer that least 5,000 signatures fell into each category, which sufficient number prevent the
certi cation the petition the signatures either category were invalidated.
bring this action for judicial review.5
Intervenor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs fail establish who they are,
how they claim aggrieved, and whether not they are even registered voters. also
contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed establish that there justieiable
controversy, Without these necessary requirements, lntervenor contends that Plaintiffs lack
standing under Sections G-209(a) and 6-209(l1) the Election Law Article, and the Court may
not test the refcrahility the SB. Plaintiffs contend, and MSBE stipulates, that tile
Registered Voter Plaintiffs meet the standing requirements, and the Court properly has
jurisdiction over this matter.
%,6-Z
Inlervcnor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs failed demonstrate that they
are aggrieved within the meaning section 6-209(a). lntervenor contends that they have failed prove that they were aggrieved determination made under Sections 6-202, 6-206
208(a)(2). See Mr). CODE /NN., ELEC. LAW 209(a)(1). However, the alleged aggrievement
resulted froru MSBE decision certify the referendum petition under section 6-208(b)(1)
the subtitle. order that, the chief election official needed determine that the petition
satisfied all requirements established law relating that petition, which specific
requirement the chief election cial section 6-208(a)(2). See MD. CODE /NN., ELEC. LAW
6-208. the decision the chief election official Section 6-208(b)(1) necessarily hinges Section 6-208(a)(2) determination, Registered Voter Plaintiffs are aggrieved Inter-vcnor raised these issues for the first time its nrerrromrrdrrirr led August Z0l2, only two days before
oral argument, having failed previously disclose them the Court Plaintiffs counsel, who hail already led
their Motion for Sunnnnry Jurlgrnent and did not address these issues. Nohvitlrstandirrg the challenge presented
Inter-vcrror sornewlml untimely raising the standing issues, the parties were afforded opporrurrity address
them oral argument and the Court tlrerefore linds that appropriate consider Inter-vennrs elairns this
point.
determination made under Section 6-208(a)(2) required Section 6-209(a)(l) and have
standing pursue this action under Section 6~209(a). such, the Court need not discuss
further the standing Plaintiff Maryland State Democratic Central Committee and can consider
the referahility issue its merits. See, eg, Mr1rnus Montgonzezjir County Cotiiwil, 235 Md.
535 (1964) (stating that any litigant aggrieved, the court will consider the merits even
other litigants are not aggrieved).
Section 6-209 Standing stated, supra, Section 6-209(b) the Election Law Article allows any registered
voter, pursuant the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgment Act, the right sack declaratory
relief petition. When seeking relief under the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgment
Act, Mn, CODE ANN., CTS. IUD. PROC, 3-401 seq., justiciable issue prerequisite
requesting declaratory relief. Amie /Irtmdcl County Ebersberger, Md. App. 360, 367-68
(1985).
The issue whether the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are, fact, registered voters not
serious dispute, despite lntervenors claims. Voter registration matter public record and
MSBE acknowledged its Answer and stipulated the rceord that checked the database and
that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are exactly that, registered voters. Having resolved this issue, clear that any registered voter may seek declaratory judgment any petition.
Next, Intervenor alleges that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed meet the
justicizihle issue requirements Section 3-409 the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgment
Act. Under Section 3-409, Court may grant declaratoryjudgment resolves the underlying
issue that gave rise the proceeding and if:
(1) actual controversy exists between contending parties;
(2) Antagonistic claims are present between the parties involved which indicate
imminent and inevitable litigation;
(3) party asserts legal relation, status, right, privilege and this challenged
denied adversary party, who also has asserts concrete interest it.
MD. CODE ANN., CTS. JUD. PROC. 3-409.
lntervenor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed demonstrate the
existence actual controversy, antagonistic claims, any legal relation, status, right
privilege under the statute. suggests that Voting status alone does not establish eligibility for
judicial review and that some level aggrievement necessary, See Doe Montgomery
County Bd. 0fElectiaIIs, 406 Md. (:97, 715-16 (2008).
While Intervenor correct that the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act guides
Section 6-209(b) the Election Law Article, thus creating justiciable controversy prerequisite,
Intervenors interpretation the justieiohle controversy requirement cuts against the legislative
intent the statute. When dcterinining legislative intent, the primary source the language
the statute, which given its rratnral and ordinary signi cation. Bazrlde/1 1/. Mayor
C0mmrs, Md. 411, 414 (1988). Here, the statute clearly authorizes any registered voter
seek judicial review the form declaratory relief any petition. Mn. CODE ANN., ELEC.
LAW 6-209(b). using this broad language, contrast the stated aggrievement
requirement Section ()-209(a), the General Assembly expanded the class ofpcrsorrs authori7.ed seek declaratory relief.
The justiciable controversy for Registered Voter Plaintiffs simply that they don agree
that SB. subject refererIdum, they argue that MSBl:I decision certify the
referendum petition was error. percentage registered voters required successfully
petition act referendum, and the decision registered voters will outcome cleterminative
should SB. included the general election ballot, registered voters have immensely
important status, right, privilege this process. The legislative intent clearly give them
broad grant declaratory judgment actions. Through their status registered voters,
Registered Voter Plaintiffs are therefore eligible for relief under the Maryland Uniforin
Declaratory Judgments Act and thus section 6-209(1)) the Election Law Article. The Court
therefore nds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing seek declaratory relief
regarding MSBE certi cation the petition refer the Congressional Districting Plan the
November 2012 general election. the other hand, Plaintiff Maryland State Democratic Central Committee not
registered voter and therefore cannot have standing under Section 6-209(b). Having found that
the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing pursue this action, the Court proceeds despite the
fact that the Democratic Central Committee does not. Sec, e.g, Marcus Montgomery County
Council, 235 Md. 535 (1964).
Conclusion Standing
The Court therefore nds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing seek
declaratory and injunctivc relief regarding the State Board certi cation the petition refer
the Congressional Districting Plan the November 2012 general election. Further, this Court
nds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are eligible seek relief under both types judicial
review authorized section 6-209 for reasons stated hcrein.
DISCUSSION
Plaintiffs challenge the certi cation SB. based the ccrlilieation two groups,
buckets, ofsiguaturcs:
Counsel for MSBE made clear that this Court need not even much determination regarding which review
process will followed since the analysis two speci issues will essentially the same. Signatures voters who attested their own signatures the
circulator: 14,254 Signatures forms that were pre- lled with the Voter name and
address lntcivcner computer software: 7,578
Plaintiffs allege that MSBE erred matter law when certi the signatures those two
buckets. 55,736 signatures are necessary petition act referendum, tl1c
disqualification either the tvo challenged buckets signatures would prevent S.B.
liom being placed the ballot.7 their Cross Motions for Summary Judgment, MSBE and
lnteivenor argue that MSBE was correct when certi the challenged signatures.
The Court Appeals has consistently stated that constitutional and statutory provisions
related referendum petitions should followed strictly, Montgomery County Volunteer
Fire-Rescue Ass Montgomery County Dd. ofElections, 418 Md. 463, 477 (2011).
These provisions are contained within Article XVI the Maryland Constitution and Title
the Election Law Article the Maryland Code. MSBE also has regulatory provisions governing
the petition process Title 33, Subtitle the Code Maryland Regulations (COMAR). CircuIator davit
Plaintiffs allege that MSBE erred matter law certifying signatures where the
signer attested his her own signature the circulator aftidavit. The form and content
the circulator affidavit prescribed Article XVI the Maryland Constitution, Section
6-204 the Election Law Article the Maryland Code, and Title 33, Subtitle the Code
Maryland Regulations (COMAR). The Constitutional provision regarding the cireulator
affidavit states that:
There shall attached each paper signatures tiled with petition
affidavit the person procuring those signatures that the signatures were affixed The signatures three percent the quali voters the state, calculated the number votes the last
gubernatorial election, are required successfully petition act referendum Mu. CUNST. Al{l XVI his presence and that, based upon the person best knowledge and bclio every
signature the paper genuine and bona tide and Iliat the signers are registered
voters the address set opposite below their naines.
Mi). CDNST. ART. XVI Section 6-204 the Election Law Article substantially similar
its requirements:
(a) general. Each signature page shall contain davif made and executed the individual whose presence all the signatures that page were affixed
and who observed each those signatures being affixed.
(b) Requirements. The affidavit shall contain the statements, required
regulation, designed assure the validity the signatures and the fairness the
petition process.
(c) Age eirculator. eireulatur must least years old the time any the signatures covered the affidavit are affixed.
MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-204 (emphasis added). Finally, COMAR 3106.03.08 provides follows:
.08 Cireuator Signed and Dated Affidavit. Allidavit Required. Each signature page shall include affidavit
signed and dated the eireulater, required by:
(1) Election Law Article, 6-204(a), Annotated Code
Maryland; and
(2) This regulation. Scope and Tenor. The affidavit shall state that:
(1) All the iiifoimation given the cireulator under Regulation
.07 this chapter true and correct;
(2) The eireulater was years old older when each signature
was affixed the page;
(3) The eirculator personally observed each signer the page was
signed; and
(4) the best the eireulator knowledge and belief, all:
(a) Signatures the petition are genuine, and
(b) gners are registered voters the State.
COMAR 33.06.0108.
The Court Appeals recently considered the purpose and construction Sections 6-203
and 6-204 the Election Law Article:
When read together, 6-203 and 6-204 are not ambiguous. Section 6-204
requiies that every signature page petition include affidavit made and
executed the individual whose presence all the signatures that page
were affixed and who observed each those signatures being affixed. The
purpose the cireulator attestation assure the validity the signatures
and the fairness the petition process. 6-204(b). This statutory provision for
the affidavit cireulatoi who attests under penalty peijuiy that the signer
affixed his her information the eirculator presence clearly addresses
prevention fraud the petitioning process and plainly intended bolster the
validity the signature entries.
Montgomery County Volimicer F[Ie-Rescue Ass Montgomery County Bd. Electiorix, 418
Md. 463, 478-79 (2011).
Plaintiffs claim that the language used the constitutional, statutory, and iegulatory
provisions governing the cireulator affidavit contemplates person other than the signer the
petition. MSBE and Iiitervenor counter that the Court should defer MSBF. interpretation
the statute charged with implementing and regmlating. However, noted supra, when
statute clear and unambiguous, the reviewing C0u1 does not defer the administrative
agcney statutoiy inteip1etation. Fire-Rescue, 418 Md. 469. the Court Appeals
explicitly stated just last year, [w]hen read together, 6-203 and 6-204 are not ambiguous.
Id. 478. Thus, the Court owes MSBE deference its interpretation Section 6-204. The
Court nonetheless agrees with MSBE and MDI- etitions.eom that Section 6-204 does not prohibit eireulntor from serving the alliant for his her own signature. the Court were accept Plaintiffs argument that Section 6-204 not clear this point, the statute would not clear and unambiguous, and the Court would therefore owe MSBE seine deference its interpretation the
statute. Seem-ialian Adniin. Noland, supra, 386 Md. 572 (stating that when statute not entirely clear,
The language Article XVI the Maryland Constitution and Title the Election
Law Article does not contain express requirement that person other than the signer the
petition serve the circulator. Section 6-203(b)(4) requires that the signature attested
affidavit appearing the page which the signature appears. MD. CODE ANN., ELUC. LAW
6-203(b)(4), undisputed that each the signatures validated using the process developed
lntervenor contain affidavit. Nothing the Constitution, the statute, the promulgated
regulations requires that the affidavit someone other than the person signing the petition.
See MD. Conn ANN., Er.F,C. LAW 6-i0l(d) Cireulatoi means individual who attests
one more signatures affixed petition the General Assembly wanted include such
requirement, could have done so, did when required that the cireulator least
years age. See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-204(e). Plaintiffs argue that allow
individual signer attest their ovn signature would invite fraud. MSBE counters saying
that evidence claim has ever been made that such fraud exists. Further, MSBE argues that
the legislative framework provides for criminal penalties the event that this might occur. See
Mn. Conn ANN,, ELEC. LAW 16-401. Even this Couit were agree with Plaintiffs, who
challenge the wisdom allowing the signer petition also sign the cireulatois affidavit,
the legislature determined that the provisions Title the Election Law Article would best
serve the interests preventing fraud. The Court finds legal support for Plaintiffs asseition
that person other than the signer the petition must serve the eireulator. MSBE was
therefore correct its application the law and correct certify these signatures.
adniiiristrative ageiicy interpretation and application the statute administers should given considerable
weight); Fire-Rescue, supra, 418 Md. 469. Accordingly, whether the statute not entirely clear and the Court
accepts MSBE interpretation, nnambiguoiis and the Court interprets it, the result the same: that there prohibition the challenged conduct.
II. ompnter-l< illcd Idcnti cntlon Data
Plaintiffs argue that signatures from lntervener website were pre- lled the sollwarc
and tlieretbre Violate the provision Section 6-203 the Election Law Article that requires
signer include his her name and address. Section 6-203 states, relevant pm:
(a) general. sign petition, individual shall.
(2) include the following information, printed typed, the spaces
provided:
(1) the signer name was signed;
(ii) the signcr address;
(iii) the date signing; and
(iv) other information required regulations adopted the State
Board.
MD, CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-203. The regulations adopted the State Board permitted Section 6-203(a)(2)(iV) are found COMAR 33.06.03.061
.06 Signer Identi cation. General. Each signature page shall contain labeled spaces for
providing, adjacent each sigliature, the information speci this
regulation. Required Information. When signing the signature page, each signer
shall:
(1) Sign the individual name appears the Statewide voter
registration list the indiVidual surname registration and
least one full given name and the initials any other names; and
(2) Provide the following itiformatioit, primed typed the
appropriate spaces:
(a) Date signing,
(b) Signcr name was signed, and
(:2) Current residence address, including house number,
street name, apartment number (if applicable), town, and
ZIP code. Optional information.
(1) The circulator shall ask each signer also provide the signe1s
date birth or, minimum, month and day ofbirth.
(2) signer failure provide this birth information docs not
invalidate the signature.
COMAR 3106.03.06. The statute requires the signer ine1udc name and address
information, whereas the rcgulation requires the signer provide it.
The process which signer interacted with the Inteivenor website set forth
great detail the affidavit Neil Parrott, Chairman MT)Petitions.com, attached Exhibit lntcrvcnor Cross Motion Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgment. For the purpose
deciding these motions, tl1c Court accepts the following relevant portion that affidavit
accurate description the process: order use the software program, registered Maryland voter who wished
sign thc pctition had log MDPetitions.con1 intcrnct website,
www.MT)Petitions.com, click box marked redistricting petition and follow series prompts commands that led them through different screens. clicking either the Sign thc petition now button the underlined
statement sign the pctition today, the second screen would appear.
The second screen contained two distinct elds.
The field the left hand side the screen stated, Get Your Petition, and
contained the following instructions:
Maryland has strict rules regarding how the petition lled out.
This site will help insure that your petition lilled out properly easy
steps.
Stop Provide inforrnntion requested the petition, indicated the
right.
Step Sclcct members your household who might also want sign
the petition.
Step Download the petition
Step Print the petition
Step Sign and date the petition.
The eld the right hand side the screen displayed series boxes where
the user could enter unique identi ers:
Get Started Its Easy
Fill out the information form with your information.
First Name
Last Name
Suffix (optional)
Email Address
Phone Number
Zip Code digit)
Birth Date Month (Dropdown) Date (Dropdown) Year (Dropdown)
Underneath Birth Date was box that could checked receive updates
about lntervener activities.
Undemeztth the Updates box was button that stated Continue, followed
this aclmuwledgomcnt: clicking Continue you agree the terms and
conditions.
MDPetitiou.con1 internet-based program used the most current voter registmtion
rolls made available the Maryland State Board Elections identify whether user was registered Maryland voter. the user was not registered Maryland voter, had entered his her unique
identifiers incorrectly, there was some other mismatch between the
identi ers entered the user and the voter rolls, the following screen appeared:
Oops, couldn find you
This could happen for couple reasons: You are not registered vote Maryland. this the ease,
you could register vote and then sign the petition after you get
your voter card, The zip code you provided doesn match the zip code the
voter database. The name entered does not match the name provided the
Board Elections when you signed up. example, Debra
may required instead Debbie. you Feel that you reached this message iI1 error, please contact
(/redistristiug/petitions/sb l/contact). the user was registered Maryland voter, had entered his her unique
idcntilicrs correctly, and these identi ers matched the voter rolls, the fourth
screen appeared.
The fourth screen identi each registered Maryland votcr the same address
and instructed the user deselect the name any registered Maryland voter
the address not wishing sign the petition clicking the box ncxt the
voters name:
Voters Household
You almost done NAME! selected everyone vho registered vote your address. Please
unsclect anyone who will not signing the petition:
Box Name
Box Name
Box Name
Beneath the name was Continue button.
Affidavit Neil Parrott 3-7 (paragraph numbers and citations omitted). After clicking
Conlinuo, thc signer was taken through several additional screens and iristructcd download,
print, and sign the petition. clear that following Intervenor process described above, each signer
irtcluclecl and provided his her information for the petition required the statute and
regulation, respectively. The plain language Section 6-203 set forth herein does not
expressly provide how the individual signer must include his her printed typed name,
address, and date signing. Neither the statute nor the regulation requires that each person must
physically print type this information the petition, thus the use computer does
not rcrrrlcr the signature invalid,
While might well the case that process like the one implemented lntcivenor was
not contemplated the legislature when the statute was written, the Court linds legal support
for the argument that lntcrvcnor process does not comply with the law. MSBE was therefore
correct its application the law and correct certify these signaturcsy
CONCLUSION
For the reasons set forth this memorandum opinion, the Court shall enter the order
attach hereto. g;//4/go/.2 SILKWORTH, Judge
Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County
The parties and the Court were under greatly accelerated schedule for this in-attcr, pursuant MD. CODE [NN.,
El.l!C. LAW 6-209(n)(3). the extent that the ourt analysis ofthe computer- lled data issue less completue
than would olhetwise pnefer given more typical sohedulc, the Court agrees with MSEE this issue mid adopts
the analysis laid out MSBE Memorandum Opposition Plaintiffs Motion.
DENNIS VVIIITLEY HI, (ll. THE
Pltlillfi/f3 CIRCUIT COURT FOR
MARYLAND STATE BOARD ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY
ELECTIONS, 11]. CASE NO.: 02-C 17136S
Defendants
2}: 5I< >34
ORDER ANT) DECLARATORY JUDGMENT
This matter came before the Court August 10, 2012 for hearing Plaintiffs Motion
for Sutnmmy Judgment, Defendants Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment, and Intervenor
Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgment. The Court held tl1e matter sub curia.
Upon consideration the written and oral arguments the parties, this day August,
2012, the Circuit Court fotA1uic Arundel County, hereby
ORDERED, that Plaintiffs Motion for Summzuy Judgment DENIED, Defendants
Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment GRANTED, and lntervenor Cross-Motion Dismiss
and/or for Summary Judgment GRANTED PART, pertains the sufficiency the
petition refer Senate Bill Chapter the 2011 Special Session the General Assembly,
and pertains the standing Plaintiff Mmylzmd Democratic State Central Committee, and
DENIED PART, pertains the standing Plaintiffs Dennis Whitley III, Anne Neal,
Karrcn Pope-Onwukwe, Joanna Hanes Lahr, and Matthew Thomas; and further,
ORDERED AND DECLAREI), that the petition submitted the Marylancl State Board Elections refer Senate Bill Chapter the 2011 Special Session the General
Assembly, legally sullieient refer the lnws the voters under Article XVI the Maryland
Constitution; and further,
ORDERED, that Senate Bill Chapter the 201 Special Session the General
Assembly shall placed the November 2012 General Election Ballot; and further,
ORDERED, that any and all other requests for relief are DENIED.