Four Candidates Disqualified From the Local November Ballot

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Zachary RunningWolf is running for Berkeley mayor no longer.

After failing to collect enough valid signatures for their nomination forms, RunningWolf and three other local mayoral and council seat candidates were disqualified on Aug. 11 from the November 2008 election.

The three other disqualified candidates are Sam Alcabes, a recent UC Berkeley graduate who filed to run for Berkeley mayor, Michael McBride, senior pastor at The Way Christian Center who filed to run for the District 2 City Council seat and Mary "Redwood Mary" Kaczorowski, a Berkeley activist and former candidate for the District 4 City Council seat.

According to the Berkeley City Clerk Department, candidates must obtain 20 signatures from registered voters by Aug. 8 to be nominated to run. The four candidates were disqualified because some of their signatures were invalid, said acting Deputy City Clerk Mark Numainville.

Numainville said RunningWolf collected 18 valid signatures; Alcabes, 19; McBride, 18; and Kaczorowski, 17.

In addition to the disqualified candidates, intended mayoral candidate Denis McComb and intended City Council candidates Jerry Threet and Jason Ira Majid dropped out of the race after failing to file their papers by the Aug. 8 deadline.

While the general election filing period began July 14, the filing period for the District 4 council member seat started July 16 as a result of Councilmember Dona Spring's death on July 13.

Kaczorowski said she believes the rush to file for Spring's seat created confusion.

"They basically adjusted the filing date for the ... filing fees for us District 4 candidates, so you would think they would adjust the filing date for the nomination papers," said Kaczorowski. "We don't get as much preparation as those running for the general election."

In response to their disqualification, Kaczorowski said she and other former candidates plan to take action.

"I sent (the city) a letter and asked them for a supplemental petition so I can gather more signatures," said Kaczorowski.

Alcabes, a longtime resident of Berkeley, said he plans to conduct a write-in campaign.

Shirley Dean, one of the two remaining mayoral candidates, said she feels sympathy for those disqualified.

"I hate to see anybody who wanted to run not run," said Dean. "But, there are certain rules and people need to follow them."


Contact Victoria Gu at [email protected]

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