Related stories, videos and links of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner's sexual harassment allegations. More >>
Related stories, videos and links of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner's sexual harassment allegations.More >>
SAN DIEGO (CNS) - More than 80 supporters of a fledgling effort to recall San Diego Mayor Bob Filner rallied outside City Hall Friday and signed up volunteers to collect petition signatures.
The effort is being spearheaded by land-use consultant Michael Pallamary, who needs to collect nearly 102,000 valid signatures to get a recall effort on the ballot.
Filner has been hounded over the past week by sexual harassment allegations that have made national news.
Pallamary read a long list of Filner's alleged transgressions, which he said included disrespecting and intimidating women, acting in a "divisive" and "disruptive" manner, creating chaos in the city, failing to maintain the dignity of the mayor's office and discussing being possessed by a "monster" in a recent interview.
As of Friday afternoon, nearly 5,200 "likes" were recorded on the "Recall Bob Filner" Facebook page.
Pallamary started the page last month, well before three of Filner's former top supporters went public with sexual harassment allegations, which they say involve two constituents and a city employee who used to work in the mayor's office. Numerous other local office-holders, many Democrats like Filner, also have called for the mayor to step down.
Filner apologized at first, but later demanded due process rights and an investigation.
On Thursday, around 30 Filner supporters demanded the same for the mayor at a news conference held at the Civic Center Plaza.
"We all stand for due process," Pallamary said. "Due process, though, is a legal process. That's what happens with a court. Now, whether Mayor Filner resigns or he's recalled, he is facing due process, and none of us can influence that in any way."
Mike Slater, a radio talk show host with 760 KFMB, said the harassment issue with Filner was "all about power," not a sex scandal.
"Mayor Filner was not lustful for women as much as he is lustful for power," Slater told the audience. "And for that reason, he is not going to resign and relinquish his power until we the people tell him, and remind him, whom he works for."
It will be a long process for Filner to repent, and during that time he shouldn't be mayor, Slater said.
Before the harassment allegations were raised, Filner had to return $100,000 donated to the city by a developer right around the time the mayor's office made a policy about-face regarding one of the donor's projects. That transaction is the subject of a federal investigation, according to published reports.
Also, Filner has been criticized for berating and having police remove a top official with the City Attorney's Office from a closed session meeting with the City Council.
The mayor has also come under question for a trip to Paris in which his travel was paid for by an Iranian resistance group, but taxpayers had to pick up a tab of thousands of dollars for his police detail.