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Recall Effort of Mayor Seminary Fails

Petition to recall Bismarck's mayor fails on the account of numerous discrepancies.

“There will be no Mayoral recall election.” That was the response of Bismarck City Administrator Keith Hunke in announcing the outcome of a petition to recall Mayor Mike Seminary.

The petition, submitted April 18, was determined to be disqualified after declaring numerous entries as invalid.

According to an official press release, the quantity and type of inconsistencies lead to the city seeking counsel from the Secretary of State and Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

In fact, only 72% of the 2,405 signatures were deemed valid… short of the required minimum. The unqualified entries included, as outlined in the press release:

  • 305 due to non-Bismarck or non-existing addresses
  • 198 due to unqualified petition circulators
  • 136 due to incomplete or illegible entries
  • 29 due to duplications and non-eligible voters
  • 667 the total number of disqualified signatures

Mayor Seminary: “I’m incredibly appreciative of all the hard work, over-time and attention to detail City staff put into this effort. I’m the Mayor of the City of Bismarck and we have a lot of work to do.”

Seminary, who previously shared concerns over the costly effort of a recall election so close to the end of his term, was easily elected mayor in 2014 while facing no formal opposition for the position. He previously served a stint as a City Commissioner.