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CA: Convicted sexual predator running for Coalinga City Council as write-in candidate

Coalinga, California – A convicted child sex predator who’s currently being housed in a state mental hospital in Coalinga wants to run for city council district 5 seat.

An election flyer is being passed around the state hospital telling inmates to vote for Micheal St. Martin as a write-in candidate for the district 5 seat.  Full Article



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  1. Dustin

    He’ll never win, of course. But for the sake of argument, suppose he did.

    I would think that would be a pretty clear indication of an effort by Coalinga (or the county or whoever) to inflate their population? Add in their failed effort to deny voting rights to that same population and I would think a lot of worm-cans could/would/should be opened regarding the corruption and overall shiftiness of the local government officials there. Think about it – budgets, grants, and requests based on population, many of whom will not be affected or receive the presumed benefits. Several tops to skim off the top of, in theory.

    The point could still be made if St. Martin gets a significant number of votes or portion of the overall electorate, since all of his votes will come from the hospital. Really interested in how this plays out.

    • David Kennerly

      Dustin, well no, actually he could well have won in that district as there are more registered voters among CSH “patients” than there are outside of CSH, from what I gather. The problem is is that he hadn’t registered as a candidate and had no intention of doing so in THIS election cycle. We had talked about him doing so some months ago (and I kind of wish that he had) but he decided that the time wasn’t yet right given other legal irons in the fire. I just spoke with Mike a moment ago to confirm all of this. He said, as we could well believe, that this was a set-up by Mayor Vosburgh and the local tv news hacks to get out the vote from easily-led Coalinga voters to support the 1% sales tax. One of the voter registration flyers that was illegally ripped-down by CSH staff was then sent to that reporter who then ran the specious story on Mike’s ostensible run for city council.

      • Dustin

        Point taken. Would argue that the purpose of candidate registration is solely to get their names on the ballot and nothing should preclude the victory of a write in candidate (unlikely it may be), but still…

  2. CR

    I don’t know what the qualifications are to run for a city council seat, but I don’t see why St. Martin couldn’t fulfill his obligations from the state hosprison. His office could be there, and his constituents who are not already there would have to go there if they want to work with him in person. Big deal. It might be good for them. I’m sure the city could arrange a teleconference or video conference for council meetings.

    The hosprison staff would almost certainly have to be forced to allow him the accommodations of his office, and to grant communication and visitation requirements and other governmental necessities of the job.

    But I’m sure the city will do everything in their power to block him.

  3. Harry

    I hope he wins with a landslide.

  4. AO

    LOL I love this! The citizens of the institution account for 33% of all Coalinga city votes. This now makes way more sense why they had the numbers to vote down that tax two years ago and why the city sued to remove their voting rights. He actually has a real shot of winning this election if everyone in the institution votes for him. Especially if free candidate isn’t the only one running. The other candidates will split that 66% while he gets all 33%. I so hope he wins and makes everyone’s heads explode.

    • CR

      @AO — “The citizens of the institution account for 33% of all Coalinga city votes.”

      Coalinga hosprison voters represent 33% in district 5, not the entire city. Good observation all the same.

      And yes, I hope they can’t stop him from being a write-in candidate, and I hope he wins.

    • Dustin

      Good info since my first post on this topic. Forgot about a lot of the history of Coalinga.

      Now thinking if he does win, Coalinga might try to reverse their annexation of the hospital (not sure what the legal term is). Still an awesome story, though. Think I want to tell it at my next stupid group meeting.

  5. Janice Bellucci

    I have spoken with Michael St. Martin and he assured me that he did not initiate a write-in campaign so that he could be elected to the Coalinga City Council. The fact is he has not properly “registered” as a write-in candidate with the appropriate elected officials and therefore he cannot be elected even if 100 percent of those who vote added his name to the ballot. His biggest concern is that the purpose of the write-in campaign is to spread fear about him and other Coalinga patients in order to cast doubt on their votes in next week’s election. It is reported that the number of patients eligible to vote has increased significantly (perhaps an additional 100 patients) in recent months due to a voter registration drive. It is also reported that fliers properly posted on hospital “bulletin boards” that voiced opposition to the new sales tax increase were removed by hospital staff.

    • AO

      @Janice, So then who started this and has requested the opposite of all residence? Is this entering a potential conspiracy of people on the “outside” doing this in order to hurt the residence of the institution?

    • jist a nobody

      I am wondering if the staff did this to spread fear in the community…

      • David Kennerly

        They did this to scare the “community” into voting for the 1% local sales tax increase.

    • totally against public registry

      Yet another vicious attack (by this state hospital) against innocent but detained citizens! What a shameful state we live in!

  6. cool CA RC

    If that hospital can beat that tax votes. This guy can win!

    Vosburg said there are 963 eligible voters in district five and 342 voters are housed in the state hospital. If none of the 621 didn’t vote then he can win.

    but I just read that Janice Bellucci wrote that he is not actually running for it. Maybe someone else will run just to rub it in Coalinga’s face!

  7. cool CA RC

    If someone does run I am not sure how that person can pull this stunt off because of the

    The Fresno County Elections Office has prepared a nominations packet containing a number of documents required to be completed and submitted prior to the close of the filign period. In addition to these nomination papers, candidates will also be required to comply with the City of Coalinga’s CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT RESIDENCY POLICY. The Policy was enacted to help ensure that City Council candidates and sitting City Councilmembers reside in the district they will or do represent.

    In order to qualify as a candidate for the City of Coalinga City Council, and have your name appear on the November 6, 2018 ballot, the following additional documentation shall be required:

    1. Proof of Homeownership / Rental Property
    2. Proof of Motor Vehicle Registration
    3. PG&E / City of Coalinga Utility Bill
    4. Candidate Affidavit

    • Eric Knight

      Every one of those items can be challenged. For instance, what if the potential candidate resides in his parents’ or sibling’s home, and the utility bill is not in their name? And what about residents who don’t (or can’t) drive? If the city tried to impose these restrictions, then they would be susceptible to a slam dunk lawsuit. The same should persevere for the potential candidate from Coalinga prison (not hospital).

      Having said that, one obvious qualification that has been defended numerous times is the requirement to be able to attend meetings at a location where everyone has to attend, in virtually every circumstance a city council meeting room. Just the inability to attend such meetings is probably enough to disqualify a candidate, or at the very least give means to impeach/remove the candidate if elected, as the State is not likely to give a Coalinga sitting council member a variance in being able to leave the prison.

  8. Eric

    This is the future: direct political involvement by registrants. Remember to vote on Tuesday!

  9. FinallyOffTheReg

    I think this is great. It’s got “Moxy”. It’s kind of a great tale. Kudo’s to this person just in the fact that someone forced into the darkest part of the RC paradigm has the “*alls to do this.

    A cold beverage is hoisted to the cause.

  10. Popeye

    There were just 22 write in votes in District five. The inmates probably couldn’t vote.

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