Thoughts for the Day – March 15, 2012

Opinion by Patricia L Johnson

Rick Santorum’s Alabama Primary Win

Was it really a win?

On February 28, 2012, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama issued an injunction extending the length of time allowed for receiving UOCAVA [Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act of 1986] ballots cast until March 31, 2012. That’s more than two weeks from now, so if these absentee ballots are not going to be counted until March 31, 2012 is it possible to call anyone a winner?

When I contacted the Alabama Secretary of State’s office the answer I was given when asked how the media could possibly call a winner, when their website doesn’t declare a winner, is the media sends reporters out to the precincts and they supposedly stay until the count is complete and phoned in. The Alabama election site is indicating 64.18 percent of the precincts reported (as of 12:54:31 PM CDT on March 14, 2012 – the day after the Alabama primary) so I’m wondering who it was that received the counts that were supposedly ‘called in’.

As a former election judge, normal operating procedure in my county is to provide the numbers immediately upon totaling the votes. Unfortunately, there are no statutes on the books in Alabama providing a timetable for Secretary of State notification before certification.

The vote has to be certified by the 23rd of March, but because of the injunction on Federal UOCAVA votes, the winner for the Federal office cannot be certified unless the winner is so far ahead in votes that the number of absentee ballots won’t impact the count.

Gerald A. Sandusky Trial

On March 13, 2012 a decision was made on the “Application for More Specific Bill of Particulars” stating the Commonwealth failed to provide specific details regarding the alleged crimes committed. The law in Pennsylvania states the Commonwealth must supply a date “fixed with reasonable certainty” when a defendant is accused of having sexually assaulted a child. It was determined the Commonwealth was unable to offer any details beyond what was already indicated in its “Bill of Particulars”; therefore the application was denied based on the fact it was a ‘moot’ point.

An attorney needs specifics, names, dates, times, and locations in order to prepare an adequate defense for any defendant; therefore the attorney for former Penn State Coach Gerald Sandusky, Joe Amendola, has stated he will be filing a motion to have charges dismissed and will submit to the court next week.

Sandusky is charged with 52 counts of child sexual abuse pertaining to the abuse of 10 children over a 10-year period of time.

Loopholes in our tax code has put us trillions of dollars in debt over the past three year period of time, let us hope and pray that loopholes in our legal system will not allow this man to walk away from these charges with no more than a slap on the wrist with a wet noodle.

© 2012 Patricia L Johnson

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