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SPECIAL COVERAGE: Living With Wildfires: San Diego Firestorm 10 Years Later

Filner Recall Organizers Pallamary, Corbin Will Combine Efforts

Stampp Corbin, Elisa Brent and Michael Pallamary announce at a press conferen...

Photo by Claire Trageser

Above: Stampp Corbin, Elisa Brent and Michael Pallamary announce at a press conference they are combining their campaigns to recall Mayor Bob Filner.

The organizers of two separate efforts to recall Mayor Bob Filner announced Friday they will combine their efforts.

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All of the accusations, statements and apologies from the key players in the developing story about allegations of sexual harassment in Mayor Bob Filner's office and calls from former mayoral supporters for his resignation.

The organizers of two separate efforts to recall Mayor Bob Filner announced Friday they will combine their efforts.

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City Attorney Memo on Recalls

City Attorney Memo on Recalls

A memo from the City Attorney's office clarifying whether multiple recall efforts can go on at the same time.

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Stampp Corbin, the publisher of LGBT Weekly, and land use consultant Michael Pallamary told reporters they would work together on one recall petition going forward. They will use the recall statement published by Pallamary and abandon Corbin's published statement, they said.

While the City Attorney's office said two recall efforts could be run simultaneously, the separate sets of signatures could not be combined at the end.

"That was a clear signal to us that we needed to bring both campaigns together, in order for the citizenry of San Diego to be be able to have its say," Corbin said.

Although Corbin said previously he was against the use of paid signature gatherers because of their use in putting Proposition 8 on the ballot, he said Friday he was open to the idea. Pallamary said they hope to use as many volunteer signature gatherers as possible, but will also hire people if necessary.

"When you get a lot of volunteers, there's a lot of energy, but hardworking people, men and women, work every day and they can't be there at 3:30 pm on a Tuesday in front of a Wal-Mart," Pallamary said. "So as any initiative proceeds, there are signature gatherers."

Elisa Brent, who will co-chair the recall effort with Pallamary and Corbin, added, "if we do not win this campaign to recall Mayor Filner, he will have more power. We need to ensure that he's going to be out by having those petition gathering companies with us."

Corbin said he hopes the seven councilmembers who have called on Filner to resign will "engage their organizations to collect signatures." He also hopes the San Diego Camber of Commerce and the Regional Economic Development Corporation will ask businesses to participate.

Pallamary acknowledged he and other organizers met last night at the home of investor Fred Applegate, but said the meeting was not a fundraiser and that Applegate is not funding the recall effort. He said he plans to use small, individual donations collected at the website recallbob.com.

Until now, Corbin and Pallamary have been running separate recall efforts, leading to legal questions about whether Corbin's recall campaign could cancel out Pallamary's because Corbin's was filed first. Questions have been raised about whether Corbin's effort was an attempt to derail Pallamary's recall campaign, a claim Corbin vehemently denies.

Corbin did not say Friday whether he decided to join his effort with Pallamary's because Pallamary threatened legal action against him.

Pallamary, a registered Republican, led San Diego's only successful recall effort, which ousted City Councilwoman Linda Bernhardt more than two decades ago. Corbin has been called a Filner supporter, although he says he does not endorse any politicians.

While Filner appointed Corbin chair of the Citizens Equal Opportunity Commission soon after taking the mayor's office, Corbin had already been vice chair under former Mayor Jerry Sanders.

Susan Jester, the leader of the local chapter of Log Cabin Republicans, says Corbin described to her a plot to derail Pallamary's recall campaign by launching his own campaign. Corbin denies this, writing in his publication Thursday, "I am not trying to save Filner; I am trying to save our wonderful city."

On Thursday, the City Attorney's office also released a memo clarifying that two recall efforts can go on at the same time. Once a recall petition, which includes the more than 103,000 signatures necessary to trigger a recall, is filed, no other recall petitions can be filed for six months, the memo said.

However, one person posting their intention to conduct a recall and beginning to collect signatures does not prevent someone else from also posting their intention and collecting signatures.

"It is the filing of a successful recall petition—i.e., one that results in a recall election—that triggers the prohibition against filing another petition for six months," the memo says.

Filner has until August 11 to respond to the recall petition. Signature gathering can begin August 18.

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