LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — The Michigan Board of State Canvassers is deadlocked along party lines over whether to place a voting rights initiative on the November election ballot.
Promote the Vote 2022 says they turned in more than 664,000 signatures, roughly 400,000 more than they needed to qualify.
In order to appear on the ballot, a proposal must get a majority vote. So as it currently stands, the initiative will not appear on the November ballot.
However, Promote the Vote 2022 is expected to appeal the decision up to the Michigan Supreme Court.
The group said they are very upset with the board’s decision.
“We are extremely disappointed by the Board of State Canvassers’ deadlock. This is a disservice to the people of Michigan and is indicative of the obstructionist partisan politics that have taken over truly non-partisan issues like election reform and equal access to the ballot,” said Khalilah Spencer, board president for Promote the Vote 2022. “Sadly, despite the clear facts and the independent validation of our proposal by the Bureau of Elections, these two Board of State Canvassers’ members are standing in the way of Michigan voters having their say on this important proposal. Nonetheless, we are confident that the courts will remedy this needless and unjustified attempt to block our proposal.”
Meanwhile, Secure MI Vote, a group that opposes the initiative, said the board made the right call.
“Michigan’s Constitution has strict rules that must be followed before a proposed amendment can be put before the voters, and Promote the Vote violated those rules,” said Secure MI Vote Spokesman Jamie Roe. “This proposal would render meaningless Article 2, Section 2 of the Michigan Constitution and voters who were asked to sign the petition were not told this fact. Worse yet, the elimination of this provision would allow convicted and incarcerated felons to vote in our elections. Rapists, armed robbers, drug dealers, and home invaders would now be able to vote while still in prison. Murderers would be able to vote, while their victims remain silenced. If voters had been made aware of that fact it is highly unlikely they would have signed the petition.”
“If this terrible proposal were adopted it would not only let murderers vote from prison, it would also make certain that no voter in our state would ever have to show a government issued photo identification before voting and give special interests a constitutional right to fund aspects of government run election administration that benefits their interests. Simply put, this terrible proposal does not belong in our state constitution, and the canvassers got it right in denying it a place on the ballot,” Roe concluded.