The frequency of recall elections over the past year has inspired the legislature to suggest changes to the current process. AJR 63 would limit the availability of recalls, while AB 472 would make it a crime to entice recall signatures.
Under current law, no justification is needed for petitioners to seek a recall. AJR 63 proposes a constitutional amendment to limit recalls to those instances where an elected official is charged with a serious crime or there is probable cause that the official violated the state code of ethics.
The Assembly voted 60-37 in favor of the bill, with all Republicans voting yes, and all Democrats voting no except for Rep. Peggy Krusick (D-Milwaukee).
Since this is a constitutional amendment, it would need to pass the Legislature in two consecutive sessions and win voter approval to become law.
A second bill concerning the recall process, AB 472, would make enticing recall signatures a Class I felony. Under the bill, attempting to coerce someone to sign, or not to sign, a recall petition would be punishable by a fine up to $10,000 and three years and six months in jail. The Assembly has scheduled a vote on this bill for Tuesday, March 13.