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- Editor’s note: After seeing the voter registration and address records, I published a blog entry last week about city council Position 6 challenger Matthew McLellan not meeting eligibility requirements by not residing within the Yelm city limits for at least one year prior to the 2019 election. On March 28, 2019, McLellan updated his voter registration records to within Yelm city limits and a mailing address outside of the Yelm city limits. He was not a registered voter in the city of Yelm at least one year prior to this November’s council election.
- Subsequently, I viewed the voter registration and address records of city council Position 2 challenger Cameron Jayne. Her voting registration and mailing address were changed from rural Thurston County to within Yelm city limits on May 14, 2019, indicating Cameron also has not met eligibility requirements.
- I reached-out to both candidates for a response and have received none at time of publication.
- The Yelm Chamber Forum luncheon is today where the councilors for re-election and their challengers will have an opportunity to state their platforms. These two candidates should inform the public of the facts and seek office another year after meeting eligibility requirements.
- The Laws of the State of Washington and the City of Yelm –
- Revised Code of Washington 35A.12.030 (RCW) as adopted by Yelm Municipal Code: 1.02.040 (YMC) requires, “No person shall be eligible to hold elective office under the mayor-council plan (of government) unless the person is a registered voter of the city at the time of filing his declaration of candidacy and has been a resident of the city for a period of at least one year next preceding his election.” Read more
- Bottom line:
- While I support anyone seeking public office and participating in the process, running for election to a city council seat requires an elevated attention to detail to earn the public’s trust and properly execute their duties of office if elected, not reflective in either of their candidacies. After all, should they have won elective office, they would have taken an Oath of Office to uphold the laws of the United States, State of Washington State and the City of Yelm.
- If a candidate is uniformed about or sides-steps the laws in running for elective office, then what value would their Oath of Office have been?
- The voters of Yelm have a right to know about this information.
- The Nisqually Valley News (NVN) has had the information about council candidate McLellan for a week and obviously chosen not to run this story. Omission has also been used as a powerful tool to sway an election by not informing the electorate in “fair and balanced” reporting, the quoted phrase this newspaper’s publisher has often touted.
- However, the newspaper’s omissions will not matter in these stories. Candidates for public office must be legally qualified to assume office at the time of filing. McLellan and Jayne were not, so even if they should win, their election will be challenged since they would not be legally qualified to assume office.