Removing elected officials: What does Mississippi law say?

MISSISSIPPI (WCBI) – Recent high-profile incidents involving an elected official have some people asking if there is a way to remove an official before their term is up.

Some states have a mechanism for recall. Voters can start a petition, get a certain number of signatures, and get the measure on a ballot for everyone to vote on.

That’s not the case in Mississippi.

But there is a process for potentially removing county officials.

It’s not easy.

According to Attorney Jeff Hosford, it involves getting 30% of the voters to sign a petition requesting the removal of the official.

That petition must then be sent to the Governor, who will decide whether or not to pursue removal.

The signature threshold to petition the removal of Constables, Sheriffs, and Justice Court Judges is higher, at 51% of voters.

But what about city officials?

“Well, I mean, if somebody wanted to remove a person, I think you would have to follow the statute: sign the petition, get 30% of the electors to sign that petition, and then present it to the governor and see where it goes. They may or may not accept it, because the law says ‘county officials’. There could be an assumption that that applies to municipalities also. But without a direct statute, there’s no way to ensure that to be true,” said Hosford.

One thing that can cause an elected official to be removed from office is being convicted of a felony.

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Categories: Local News, State News