Challenges filed to disqualify Nez, Shirley

LOS ANGELES

Navajo Times | Donovan Quintero
Vice President Jonathan Nez was the top vote-getter in the Navajo Nation presidential primary election. He will face former president Joe Shirley Jr. in the general election.

Complaints have been filed against the two winners of the Navajo Nation Primary Election for president in an effort to get them removed from the general election ballot.

Vincent Yazzie, one of the unsuccessful candidates in the primary, submitted two complaints against Vice President Jonathan Nez and former president Joe Shirley Jr. Yazzie filed his complaints at the Office of Hearings and Appeals, saying both have violated election laws and should be disqualified as candidates.

With Nez, Yazzie claims that he lied on the application to be a candidate when he failed to state that he had been convicted of a extreme driving under the influence of alcohol charge in 2002 or 2007 (could be either in hand-written complaint) in Flagstaff Municipal Court after being arrested with an alcohol blood level of .15.

Joe Shirley Jr.

For Shirley, Yazzie claims the election law limits a candidate to two terms as president, which Shirley has already served.

Yazzie submitted the complaints himself without use of an attorney and on hand-written forms.

According to Pat Sandoval, the campaign manager for Shirley, hearing officers will decide if the complaints have any merit. If they decide they do, a hearing will be scheduled.

Sandoval said he is confident that the complaint against Shirley will be dismissed since this question came up when Shirley ran in 2014 and the Navajo Nation Supreme Court issued a ruling saying that the law allowed a two-time president to run again after he sat out one election cycle.


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Categories: News

About Author

Bill Donovan

Bill Donovan has been writing about the Navajo Nation government since 1971 and for the Navajo Times since 1976. He is currently semi-retired and is living in Torrance, California, and continues to report for the Navajo Times.