LANSING, Mich. – Michigan lawmakers today rushed through committee bills – without providing opportunity for citizens to review the bills and offer testimony – that would lead to chaos at voting places all over Michigan.
Senate Bills 303 and 304 seek to change long-standing Michigan election law that allows voters to sign legally binding affidavits of identity to vote. The bills would give unelected partisan poll watchers a new, uncontested right to challenge signatures for all voters if they “think” they do not match existing voting records.
“This is part of the trend we are seeing nationwide, of Republican-led legislatures injecting partisan politics into what has been an administrative process that has been run safely and securely by local clerks who are accountable to voters,” said Nancy Wang, executive director of Voters Not Politicians. “We in Michigan saw firsthand at the TCF Center in 2020 the chaos and disruption that results when partisans choose to challenge multiple signatures without reason. These bills would make that chaos standard practice in Michigan elections.”
No evidence has been provided to show that even one of the ballots cast with affidavits in the November 2020 election was voted by an ineligible voter. Even a newly released report by Michigan’s Senate Oversight Committee found no evidence of fraud, and went so far as to call attempts to investigate the election further a ‘waste of time’. Instead, some lawmakers are choosing to join in advancing the “Big Lie” that the 2020 election was not conducted fairly – even though 250 audits have been conducted in Michigan with the initial results being upheld repeatedly.
“Voters in Michigan could not have been more clear when we overwhelmingly approved Proposal 3 to expand voting rights for all in 2018, and again when we voted in record numbers by mail or in person in 2020. We want safe, secure and accessible voting,” said Wang. “We urge the House to reject these bills, which would take away long-standing voting options from voters, while making our elections chaotic and less secure. Our lawmakers must instead listen to the voters — take steps to make Michigan a top 10 state in voter turnout by increasing opportunities for early voting, increasing access to secure drop boxes and providing voters with more choices on how to vote by making it easier to apply for an absentee ballot.”
Voters Not Politicians is a nonpartisan advocacy organization that works to strengthen democracy by engaging people across Michigan in effective citizen action. Learn more at www.votersnotpoliticians.com.