Zellner Chairmanship Challenged
by Buck Quigley - posted 4:53 pm, October 5, 2012
A show cause order was filed today in State Supreme Court, questioning the recent election of Jeremy Zellner as chairman of the Erie County Democratic Committee. The lawsuit is being brought by Frank C. Max, Jr. (Chairman of the Town of Cheektowaga Democratic Committee; Daniel S. McParlane (Chairman of the Town of West Seneca Democratic Committee); and John F. Fracos (City of Buffalo Democratic Zone Chairman Zone 21).
Respondents include Erie County Board of Elections Commissioner and Secretary of the Erie County Democratic Committee Dennis E. Ward; Erie County Board of Elections Commissioner Ralph M. Mohr; former Erie County Democratic Chair Leonard Lenihan; The Erie County Democratic Committee; “purported” Chairman of the Erie County Democratic Committee Jeremy Zellner; and David A. Rivera, Betty Jean Grant, James Connolly, Robert E. Brown, Molly McLaughlin, Gayle Syposs, Dennis Ward, and Ivory L. Payne, Jr.—in their official capacities as officers of the Erie County Democratic Committee.
A court date has been set for Thursday, October 11, at 9:30am, with Hon. M. William Boller, J.S.C., presiding. Correction: Hon. Diane Y. Devlin is scheduled to hear the case.
The show cause order calls for a new election, among other things, claiming an unlawful redistricting process that created “two classes of committee members, those whose districts were altered and those whose districts were not altered.” It boils down to the issue of weighted votes.
Click here to read the court papers. Check out Exhibit B, which illustrates under-represented voters throughout the county. Cheektowaga is under-represented by 43%; West Seneca by 71%. In the city of Buffalo, the South district is under-represented by 54%.
And check out Exhibit E, which is simply this Artvoice story.