Oct 23, 2018

Proposed Law: how long must someone live i a city before being allow to run for mayor?

While this law, should it pass, would be too late to help Yitzchak Pindros (this time around), it could help many mayoral candidates in the future, especially among the Haredi parties where it is common to move potential candidates from city to city at the last moment.

MK Michael Malkieli (Shas) is proposing a law to prevent in the future a situation similar to what just happened in Elad. Malkieli is proposing that the obligation of a potential candidate to make his adopted city the central place in his life to only become an obligation after the candidate wins and takes office, and not in advance in order to become a candidate.

Malkieli explains that the right to elect and to be elected is a basic right that without it takes away all value from the democracy. The obligation for the candidate to be living within the place he wants to run for office is so that he will have familiarity with the residents of the town and their needs - for this it is enough to make the town your central home when the candidate takes office. The extra 30 days prior to elections (when the deadline for filing for candidacy takes effect) does not give him any additional familiarity with the needs of the town.
source: Kikar

On the radio Malkieli explained further that 30 days isn't even enough for this and if the candidate really needs to be familiar with the town and its needs he should have to live there for a year before being allowed to run for office.

I actually think the opposit eof what Malkieli said is the better idea. Because 30 days is not enough time to get familiar with the needs of the office, a candidate should have to live there for a year before being allowed to run. If he is right, more time is needed, not less. Why should a candidate get into office and only then start getting familiar with the town and its needs?

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  1. Yet another example of paternalistic limits on democracy which treat the electorate as if they can't decide for themselves who is good for them or not. If for some reason people prefer someone new to a town, without knowledge of local issues, so be it.

    1. And while you're at it, let children run for mayor. Let people who aren't citizens of the country run for mayor. Of course.

    2. uh, yes. If the majority vote for someone, so that's who the majority want to lead them, and who are you to deny them their own bad choice?

  2. If it were an issue of familiarity, you could also rely on whoever they delegate to.
    I would think the purpose is to require that they have "skin in the game" - that they actually care what happens to "their" city, because they live there. And even then I agree - 30 days is too temporary to care whether they do a good job for a city they'll move out of after they serve their term also.

  3. Here in USA, we have far-more-liberal laws about this: City and state officials can move into the district which they represent - after winning the election - as long as it's before they begin to serve. And members of the United States Congress are required to live in the states which they represent - but not necessarily in the districts which elected them.

    1. Not at all. In NY State there is a residency requirement (from https://www.dos.ny.gov/LG/onlinetraining/local_government_public_officers_courseoutline/Local%20Government%20Public%20Officers%20Text.pdf):
      Slide 11
      - Residency
      Generally, to hold public office, there is a local residency requirement. The meaning of
      the term residency is derived from traditional notions
      of domicile, meaning “where you
      New York State Election Law § 1-
      104 (2)
      defines “residence” as “that place where a
      person maintains a fixed, permanent and principal home and to which he, wherever
      temporarily located, always intends to return.” To determine a person’s residence, both
      expressed intent and conduct must be evaluated. To be a resident of a place, a person
      must be physically present with the intent to remain for a period of time.

    2. In NYS, the residency laws are loosely enforced.
      A number of politicians live outside the district, and have an official residency (called domicile) in the district, often in an abandoned home or the like.
      I once lived in a nice quiet cul de sac in flatbush, when I read that my neighbor two doors down, officially lived in the boarded up house across the street, as my and his side of the street are outside the district.
      The former district attorney for Brooklyn never lived in Brooklyn, but in breezy point, queens, a nice Irish neighborhood.

      And US senator Buckley (brother of the national review editor) lived in Connecticut, but had an official address in NYS.

  4. I think his point was that since 30 days isn't enough before the election, then why even bother with this rule. If you want the spirit of the law, then make it a year. Since it's a feeble attempt, get rid of it.

  5. You are completely off base about the US. Take a look here http://www.ncsl.org/research/elections-and-campaigns/who-can-become-a-candidate-for-state-legislator.aspx

    Most states have a serious residency requirement for state legislators fo at least 1 year in the district with many having a 2 or 3 year resdiecny requirement.


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