Md. ballot question: Removal of elected officials

WASHINGTON – On Nov. 6, voters will weigh in on critical issues facing regional states, including the Virginia government’s right to seize private property and the issues of gay marriage, tuition for undocumented immigrants and expanded gambling in Maryland.

WTOP has compiled additional information on some of these topics. Take a moment to learn a bit more about what will be on the ballot this fall.

Maryland Statewide Ballot

Question 3: Constitutional Amendment
Suspension and Removal of Elected Officials

This changes when an elected official charged with certain crimes can be suspended or removed from office. If this passes, an elected official will be suspended when found guilty of a crime, and will be removed from office when the conviction becomes final or when the official pleads guilty or no contest.

Currently, elected officials are suspended if they are convicted or plead no contest. Removal only comes when the conviction is final.

How it will appear on the ballot:

    “Changes the point at which an elected official charged with certain crimes is automatically suspended or removed from office. Under existing law, an elected official who is convicted or pleads no contest is suspended and is removed only when the conviction becomes final. Under the amended law, an elected official is suspended when found guilty and is removed when the conviction becomes final or when the elected official pleads guilty or no contest.”

  • For the Constitutional Amendment
  • Against the Constitutional Amendment

More Information:

The proposed amendment comes on the heels of last year’s corruption investigation that netted former Prince George’s County Executive Jack Johnson and his wife, former Prince George’s County Councilmember Leslie Johnson.

Leslie Johnson returned to the council after she had pleaded guilty to destroying evidence in a federal case against her husband. She had planned to stay in office until her sentencing at the end of the year, but she resigned under pressure from county officials.

Delegates Jolene Ivey, D-Prince George’s, sponsored the amendment and is nearly certain of its success.

“Without any of us putting out one dollar to promote it, I can’t believe anybody is going to vote against it,” Ivey tells WBAL News.

For more information, visit the Maryland State Board of Elections website.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP and The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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