AG outlines procedure for filling Senate District 30 vacancy

Attorney General Bob Cooper has issued an opinion on the procedures to be followed in choosing Democratic and Republican nominees to succeed Senate Minority Leader Jim Kyle of Memphis, who is resigning his Senate District 30 seat to become a Chancery Court judge. The opinion is HERE.

And here is Jackson Baker’s summary of what it means:

(1) require nominations to be made by the two major parties’ local governing bodies — the Shelby County Democratic executive committee and the Shelby County Republican steering committee;

(2) limit the number of eligible voters to those committee members who represent precincts that lie within Senate District 30.

In the case of Democrats, who elect most of their executive committee members by House District, this effectively franchises all members representing House Districts which contain such precincts.

Republicans also elect many of their steering committee members from House Districts, but a majority of their committee members are at-large and will also be enabled to vote.

(3) require House members seeking the Senate nomination to withdraw from the November ballot before attempting to win their party’s nomination for the Senate. This requirement places a clear burden upon rumored candidates like Democratic state Reps. Antonio Parkinson and G.A. Hardaway, inasmuch as the withdrawal of either from the November ballot would necessitate a write-in campaign to fill the ballot void for their party’s House race.

Preliminary word is that the county’s Democratic committee will be asked by chairman Bryan Carson to convene on September 8 to name a candidate.

All candidacies, whether by party nomination or by independents, must be certified by a date 45 days from the date of the November 4 election. That would seem to make the September 20 the effective deadline for application to the Election Commission.