Guam – The terms of 2 of the 6 appointed members of the Guam Election Commission expired prior to the November 2ed General Election.
They are Martha Ruth and Joseph Mesa. Both are Republican members of the GEC Board.
Mesa was appointed to the Board in June of 2007. His appointment expired in June of this year. In Ruth’s case, she was appointed to the GEC Board on October 29th 2008. Her appointment expired on October 28th of this year, 5 days before the General Elections and 9 days before the machine re-count on Saturday November 6th.
It was Ruth who introduced the the motion to certify the election results after that machine recount. The 6 members of the Board present that night voted unanimously to accept the results and the Calvo-Tenorio team was declared the winners of the 2010 Gubernatorial Election.
However, the expiration of her term raises the question of whether or not a motion made by a Board Member whose term has expired is a valid motion, and is the vote on that motion valid?
GEC Attorney Cesaer Cabot declined to directly address the question because saying he needed to review the issue and discuss it with the Board members first.
However Cabot did point out that rule that automatically extends appointments to GovGuam positions 90 days beyond the date of expiration.
That rule may clear Ruth, but Mesa, whose term expired in June, was well beyond the 90-day rule allowance by October 1st.
The November 6th certification of Calvo-Tenorio following the machine recount was unanimous. Even if Ruth’s and Mesa’s votes were discounted, the 4 other GEC Board Members present voted for it, and that’s still a majority on the 7 members board.
GEC Board Members:
1. CHAIRMAN – John Taitano – Republican
2. JOE MESA – Republican
3. MARTHA RUTH – Republican
4. BOB CRUZ – Independent
5. VICE CHAIR – Alice Taijeron – Democrat
6. JOSH TENORIO – Democrat
7. JOHN TERLAJE – Democrat