‘Recruitment Rally' to Kick Off Filner Recall Effort

A San Diego political activist who’s leading a movement to recall embattled Mayor Bob Filner will advance his efforts with a “recruitment rally” calling for volunteers this Friday at City Hall.

Michael Pallamary created a “Recall Bob Filner” Facebook page back in June.

In the past week, Pallamary’s page has racked up thousands of “likes” in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment surrounding Filner.

Accusations against Filner came to a boiling point this past Monday at a heated press conference held by former ally Donna Frye and attorneys Marco Gonzalez and Cory Briggs, who presented detailed accounts of unidentified women claiming to have been sexually harassed by Filner.

Now, for his part, Pallamary is ready to move forward with his plan to recall Filner.

On Friday, Pallamary – a longtime Republican Filner opponent -- will hold a rally to recruit volunteers for the recall, and inform people about the process.

Pallamary says he’s been overwhelmed by the interest in his Recall Bob Filner Facebook page, with thousands of people eager to help in the effort.

“The majority of inquiries have been ‘What we can do?’ and ‘When can we start?’” Pallamary told NBC 7.

The start time is crucial.

According to the recall process outlined by the City Clerk’s office, the clock starts ticking once there is a published notice of intention to circulate a recall petition.

Within 10 days, an affidavit stating that the notice has been published has to be filed with the City Clerk. Within five days, the mayor must be notified, and then, within 14 days, the mayor can respond.

Exactly 21 days after the published notice, the petition can be circulated among voters. The signed petition must be filed within 60 days after the notice of intent is published.

That leaves proponents 39 days to gather signatures from 15 percent of the voters in the city.

In this age of social media, Pallamary hopes time is on his side. He hopes people can download the recall petition online and sign it.

“Twenty years ago we used fax machines and went door-to-door walking to people,” he said. “What I don’t want to do is run and have volunteers waste their time going to Tom or Mary’s house and give them some recall petitions.”

Pallamary says he needs a minimum of 101,000 signatures, which will then have to be verified by the City Clerk.

If there is an insufficient number of valid signatures Pallamary says recall proponents get another try -- by filing a supplemental petition within 30 days.

His main mission is to be organized, swift and successful in his recall efforts.

“The most important thing for a recall is that it succeeds. If you fail at a recall you empower that person, and knowing the mayor, if this recall effort fails that will validate everything he is saying. Doing [this correctly] will be critical so it has to be a thoughtful process, well thought out, it has to be articulated, it has to be vetted,” said Pallamary.

And if the recall effort should fail, recall proponents would have to wait at least six months before another effort to recall the same public official.

Pallamary’s “Recall Recruitment Rally” is scheduled for Friday at 4 p.m. at the community concourse at City Hall.

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