Senator Maynard And The Oath, Ctd.Posted: January 7, 2015
To the pleasant surprise of just about everyone, Senator Andrew Maynard (D-Stonington) appeared in the Senate chamber this morning and took the oath of office with his colleagues. Former Senate President Pro Tem Donald Williams Jr. accompanied Maynard, who apparently did not speak, but smiled and waved to his colleagues.
I wrote a post last November about the legal significance of Sen. Maynard taking, or not taking, the oath. I concluded that even if he did not take the oath today, he could continue to hold office pending a special election based on the oath he took two years ago.
Now that he has taken the oath again, however, my reading of the law is that he is legally entitled to hold the office for the next two years–even if he is mentally and/or physically incapable of performing the duties of his office. Unless he resigns, or unless some legal challenge, such as a quo warranto action, results in a determination that he is unfit to serve (and I have no idea if such a challenge is even remotely possible, much less meritorious), Andrew Maynard will be the state senator representing Stonington for the next two years. That additional two years of state service is significant, for it means that Senator Maynard will have served the ten years necessary to qualify for lifetime medical coverage and other state benefits.
I certainly hope that Senator Maynard’s appearance at the Capitol today is a sign that his recovery is progressing sufficiently to allow him to fulfill the duties and responsibilities of the office to which he was just reelected. Only time will tell.