California secretary of state faces lawsuits over recall candidate listing

California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KRON) — The California secretary of state’s office could face at least two lawsuits from the list of dozens of candidates running to replace Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The are two days left before Dr. Shirley Weber is expected to certify the list of candidates, but one Republican is ready to battle in court just to be on the ballot, another wants to use his preferred designation and a Democrat wants to make sure his name is recognized.

Potential recall candidate Larry Elder reacted Monday to the secretary of state’s office rejecting him from the official list of candidates.

The office told him he did not qualify because of redaction issues with his tax returns.

“We filed both redacted and unredacted tax returns,” Elder said. “So I guess what they’re saying is we redacted something that shouldn’t have been redacted or we didn’t redact something that should have been redacted. Never has anybody been disqualified from the ballot here in California for a reason like that.”

In a Twitter video Monday, Elder criticized a newer law requiring candidates running for governor to submit five years’ worth of tax returns.

In his effort to be the 42nd recall candidate, Elder gave a message to Weber.

“I’ll see you in court,” Elder said.

Late Monday afternoon, Republican candidate Kevin Faulconer announced he was suing Weber over his ballot designation, which was listed as under review in the list Weber’s office released Saturday. Faulconer’s preferred designation is “retired San Diego mayor.”

His campaign said the use of “retired” being under review “defies common sense.”

Another candidate, YouTube star and financial analyst Kevin Paffrath, also known as Meet Kevin, says he is also suing the Secretary of State’s Office.

Although the Democratic candidate met the filing requirements, the secretary of state will not allow him to be listed as Kevin “Meet Kevin” Paffrath, arguing it’s not a bonafide nickname.

But the candidate says Meet Kevin has been his identity since 2003 and how he’s branded across social media

“So not having my nickname Meet Kevin is something that would be devastating to our campaign,” Paffrath explained. “I don’t know that people, who are my supporters, would identify me as Kevin Paffrath without the Meet Kevin.”

Paffrath made a YouTube video asking followers to email the secretary of state’s office to let them know how he’s identified. He says 4,000 emails were sent within 10 minutes.

Paffrath says he got a phone call from the secretary of state’s attorney.

“She asked like, ‘Hey, please, please don’t have people email us,” Paffrath said, paraphrasing the conversation he says he had with the attorney. “And I’m like, ‘We just wanted to make sure you had all the documentation you could before you make your decision.’ And she says, ‘Kevin, I’ll do this for you, I’ll call you before 5 o’clock tomorrow, just make the emails stop.’ So, I private the video, it was only up for 14 minutes, and she never called me.”

Judges would need to make decisions on these cases by Wednesday, which is the last day the secretary of state can certify the list of candidates and send it off to counties.

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