News, Brooklyn: Eugene challenged on grounds he refused seat

While of little interest to those outside Brooklyn's 40th City Council District, the serial comedo-drama (drami-comedy?) that is our super-special election takes another twist. I heard about this last night at our neighborhood association meeting. It's been reported in several venues this morning:
The Wellington Sharpe campaign has filed a Request for Judicial Intervention ( RJI ) in the Brooklyn Supreme Court to invalidate Mathieu Eugene's Nominating Petition. There will be a hearing on the matter on April 12. Sharpe is a candidate in the April 24 th City Council 40th District Special Election.

The Sharpe campaign in a statement insisted that "The 40th District seat became vacant as a result of Eugene's declination of the office and his refusal to execute his Oath."
- Residency and Eligibility in the 40th, Room Eight
It would be morally satisfying to see Eugene go down in this way. But NYC election politics has nothing to do with justice, and my cynicism for politics is surpassed only by Eugene's.

The section of law cited in the Request reads, in part:
Every office shall be vacant upon the happening of one of the following events before the expiration of the term thereof:
... His refusal or neglect to file his official oath or undertaking, if one is required, before or within thirty days after the commencement of the term of office for which he is chosen.
Eugene himself, the putative winner of the first special election, requested the second special election just so he wouldn't have to prove he lived in the district he was elected to represent at the time he was elected. But again, a decision on this Request will probably hinge on the timing of Eugene's "refusal," which came after the Board of Elections certified his win, but before he was sworn in. Of course, he refused to be sworn in, because that would have required proof of residence.

Got it?

Sharpe is another carpet-bagger. He also didn't live in the district when he began campaigning for the first special election. By apparently moving in before the date of the first previous special election, he seems to demonstrate at least some basic competencies Eugene lacks: the ability to read a calendar, and to know what day it is.

Petition challenges will also be heard by a judge this Thursday. Hopefully, that evening we'll know who we can vote for in two weeks on April 24. Again.

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