Michigan lawmakers agree on early absentee ballot processing -- What we know
Michigan lawmakers have agreed on an early absentee ballot processing Wednesday night in Lansing. The deal reached between the legislature and the governor means local clerks will now have the two days before Election Day to preprocess absentee ballots.
Michigan lawmakers issue subpoenas to Detroit, Livonia city clerks for information on 2020 primary, general elections
DETROIT – The Michigan House and Senate Oversight committees subpoenaed Detroit City Clerk Janice Winfrey and Livonia City Clerk Susan Nash. Both cities had a number of precincts where the poll books did not match the vote tally and are not explained. Both city clerks have until Jan. 12 to present documents explaining how the election was handled. The Michigan House and Senate are holding hearings on alleged voting irregularities, which have found no proof of fraud at this point and nothing to suggest the vote in Michigan was not secure or accurate. House Oversight Chair Matt Hall, of Marshall, issued the following statement Tuesday after a joint hearing of the House and Senate Oversight committees:
Texas AG files lawsuit in U.S. Supreme Court against Michigan on election process
LANSING, Mich. – Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a Lawsuit Tuesday claiming that Michigan and other battleground states altered election laws and flooded the state with ballots with no chain of custody. The lawsuit asks the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case after the Court declined to hear a Pennsylvania case that wanted to reverse that state’s vote certification. The lawsuit repeats numerous false, disproven and unsupported allegations of illegal mail-in balloting and voting in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. This year, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson sent out applications to vote, not actual ballots, unless the voter completed the process to vote absentee. Their votes were counted, in some cases, multiple times.”The audits will include a statewide risk-limiting audit, a complete zero-margin risk-limiting audit in Antrim County, and procedural audits in more than 200 jurisdictions statewide, including absentee ballot counting boards, according to the Bureau.
Texas attorney general files lawsuit against Michigan on election process
LANSING, Mich. – Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a brief Tuesday claiming that Michigan and other battleground states altered election laws and flooded the state with ballots with no chain of custody. This year, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson sent out applications to vote, not actual ballots unless the voter completed the process to vote absentee. President Donald Trump’s legal team has not been successful in Michigan so far. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court declined to hear a case that wanted to reverse Pennsylvania’s vote certification. Their votes were counted, in some cases, multiple times.”Watch the full report in the video posted above.
Few Michigan absentee ballots rejected amid record voter turnout in 2020 election
See the full list of reasons for rejected Michigan ballots in the table below. In the August primary election, about 10,600 of 1.6 million absentee ballots (less than 1 percent) were rejected in Michigan. The state’s previous record was 2.5 million votes cast in the Aug. 2020 primary election, which also beat a record of 2.2 million votes cast in the Aug. 2018 primary. The 3.3 million Michigan absent voter ballots cast this November beat the state’s previous record of 1.6 million votes cast in the Aug. 2020 primary election. Before then, the highest number of absent voter ballots cast in Michigan was 1.3 million in the 2016 presidential election.
Republicans face court setbacks, Trump law firm steps down
The legal blows began when a federal appeals court rejected an effort to block about 9,300 mail-in ballots that arrived after Election Day in Pennsylvania. A Philadelphia judge found none as he refused late Friday to reject about 8,300 mail-in ballots there. Porter Wright filed the motion Thursday, as criticism grew that law firms backing the Republican election challenges were helping Trump defy the will of the American people. Porter Wright, which has earned more than $700,000 from the Trump campaign, appeared to take down its Twitter feed Tuesday after it was inundated with attacks. The firm did not reply to specific questions about the posts or whether it would stop representing the Trump campaign entirely.
Election officials get head start on absentee ballots at TCF Center
DETROIT – Election officials are getting a head start inside Detroit’s TCF Center on Monday -- opening envelopes, matching ballots and voters and logging them into the state system, and setting the ballots aside to be counted on Tuesday’s Election Day. As of Monday, more than 2.6 million absentee votes have been returned statewide with at least another 700,000 expected to arrive by Tuesday. On Sunday, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said that it won’t be up to anyone except the state. “Candidates don’t get to choose who wins an election, the voters do. And myself and the 1,500 clerks and 83 county clerks all across the state will be vigilantly committed to counting every ballot vote,” Benson said.
Michigan court blocks 2-week absentee ballot extension
DETROIT – Absentee ballots must arrive by Election Day to be counted, the Michigan Court of Appeals said Friday, blocking a 14-day extension that had been ordered by a lower court and embraced by key Democratic officials in a battleground state. Any changes must rest with the Legislature, not the judiciary, the Republican-appointed appeals court judges said in a 3-0 opinion. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson last week said 2.7 million people had requested absentee ballots, a result of a change in law that makes them available to any voter. Michigan law says absentee ballots must be turned in by 8 p.m. on Election Day to be valid. The case was heard by appeals court judges Boonstra, Michael Gadola and Thomas Cameron.
Detroit Pistons work to get out the vote, record turnout expected
LANSING, Mich. – We are less than three weeks away from the United States Presidential election and the work continues to help make sure everyone’s voice is heard. The Detroit Pistons worked Thursday to reach out to Detroiters to offer critical information to get them to the polls. Pistons were making sure residents knew how to register, where to vote and how to get the help they need. Michigan Secretary of State, Jocelyn Benson, said the voter turnout is expected to be record breaking. Whitmer signs historic legislation giving clerks more time to process absentee ballotsBe prepared: 2020 General Election in Michigan: Key dates, deadlines to know
Are face masks required to vote in person in Michigan for Nov. 3 General Election?
But are Michigan voters required to wear face masks to the polls? The answer is no, Michigan voters are not required to wear face masks while voting in person for the General Election on November 3. Michigan voters who feel uncomfortable voting in person amid the pandemic now have the option to vote by mail using an absent voter ballot. The state of Michigan mailed absentee voting applications to all registered Michigan voters in May for this year’s August and November elections. There is still time for Michigan voters to request a mail-in ballot for the General Election on November 3.
Can you vote in person in Michigan for the 2020 General Election amid the coronavirus pandemic?
Michigan voters who feel uncomfortable voting in person amid the pandemic now have the option to vote by mail using an absent voter ballot. The state of Michigan mailed absentee voting applications to all registered Michigan voters in May for this year’s August and November elections. There is still time for Michigan voters to request a mail-in ballot for the General Election on November 3. You can apply to receive an absent voter ballot on the state’s website right here. Learn more: Voting by mail in Michigan for 2020 General Election: What to knowDo you need a voter registration card in order to vote in person?
Shelby Township to offer drive-thru voting this Saturday amid COVID-19 pandemic
All rights reserved)SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Township officials will be holding a drive-thru voting event this Saturday in Shelby Township. Residents will be able to drive to the Township Hall, fill out an absentee ballot form and vote there. The drive-thru voting event will run from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Members of the clerk’s staff will be there to assist voters. Residents can either fill out the absentee ballots there, or take them home to complete them. The drive-thru voting event will take place at the Shelby Township Hall located at 52700 Van Dyke Avenue.
Michigan Gov. Whitmer signs historic legislation giving clerks more time to process absentee ballots
LANSING, Mich. – With less than a month to go until Election Day, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has signed new legislation hoping to help local clerks manage the record turnout that’s expected. Whitmer and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson spoke out on Tuesday and revealed what’s being done to ensure every vote will be counted. Whitmer signed historic legislation giving clerks more time to process ballots. Because of the turnout expected, the election may not be certified until the Friday after votes are cast.
Michigan Gov. Whitmer approves earlier processing of absentee ballots for November election
LANSING, Mich. – Clerks in Michigan cities or township of at least 25,000 people can start processing a surge of absentee ballots a day before November's presidential election under legislation signed by Gov. Election officials previously couldn't remove ballots from outer envelopes until 7 a.m. on Election Day, which this year is Nov. 3. The law also includes security requirements for newly installed boxes where voters can drop off absentee ballots instead of using the mail. Benson, a Democrat, urged people who plan to return their ballot by mail to do it no later than two weeks before Election Day due to potential postal delays. Benson cautioned that because absentee ballots cannot begin to be counted until 7 a.m. on Election Day, the count may not be final until three days after the election.
Exclusive poll: Joe Biden extends lead in Michigan
Exclusive new poll numbers show Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden extended his lead by three, bringing him to eight points in Michigan over President Donald Trump. “The biggest shift of all came among white senior citizens in Michigan,” said Richard Czuba, CEO of the Glengariff Group. The new WDIV/Detroit News poll was conducted after the first presidential debate and before the president was diagnosed with COVID-19. It is the fulcrum point of this election,” Czuba said. A majority of the people who participated in the poll watched the presidential debate.
Trust Index: Fact-checking claims about absentee voting made during Trump-Biden debate
The issue of absentee voting has become the hot button issue in the weeks leading up to the election. The President has been repeatedly critical of the process, despite voting absentee himself in Florida, and has worked to sew distrust with the processes of certain states, including Michigan. The President had more to test when it came to claims about absentee voting during Tuesday night’s first presidential debate, but we’ll start with this from Vice President Joe Biden. Biden does appear to confuse the director of homeland security with DHS’s cyber security director who said last month election integrity may actually improve with more absentee ballots. According to the findings of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, 1 percent of the absentee votes were deemed invalid.
Republicans want to appeal major Michigan ballot decision
DETROIT – The Republican-controlled Michigan Legislature is seeking to intervene in a major court decision that will allow absentee ballots to be counted days after the election. The House and Senate want to join the case and appeal the decision. State law normally requires absentee ballots to be received by the time polls close on Election Day, not days later. Michigan's absentee ballots will flood local governments after voters in 2018 expanded eligibility. “We want to get as many ballots in by 8 p.m. on Election Day," Benson told The Associated Press.
Michigan appeals court: SOS Benson’s mass mailing of absent ballot applications OK
When Benson announced the mass mailing, she was criticized by President Donald Trump, who wrongly stated that she was sending absentee ballots, not applications. The previous record for absent voter ballots cast in a Michigan election was 1.3 million in the 2016 Presidential Election. Already, about 2.3 million absentee ballots have been requested for the fall election, which Benson said puts Michigan on track to receive more than 3 million that are completed. Of the 7.7 million registered voters in Michigan, about 5 million are expected to participate in the upcoming election, officials said in August. About 10,000 absent voter ballots were rejected in Michigan’s Primary Election in August.
Michigan Court of Appeals to review Detroits absentee ballot precinct inaccurate count
DETROIT An activist is suing Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson for an inaccurate count reported from Detroits absentee ballot precincts in the August primary. The Michigan Court of Appeals has agreed to hear the case. Robert Davis, who is suing Benson over the miscount and attended the canvass of Detroits votes, said he had no choice. During the primary election, 72 percent of Detroits absentee ballot precincts had an inaccurate count. If the books dont match that means a recount is not legally possible which in a tight race is problematic.
Identity thieves are targeting absentee voters
DETROIT – Absentee voting is presenting an opportunity for criminals to take your personal information. Millions of voters are expecting to vote absentee in November and scammers are aware of that. The BBB is tracking one regarding fake absentee ballot information. The scammer will ask if you want to sign up to get an absentee ballot, then will start asking for personal information. If you have questions about absentee voting you should contact your local clerk’s office or visit the Secretary of State’s website.
Detroit primary election irregularities may lead to state stepping in
DETROIT The Michigan Board of Canvassers is asking the Secretary of State to get more closely involved in Detroits next election. According to officials, 72 percent of Detroits absentee ballots werent re-countable based on irregularities in ballot handling. READ: Board of Canvassers: 72 percent of Detroit absentee precincts have inaccurate countsEarlier this month, there were a lot of new election workers. Start with that, and then get as many qualified people as you can and know what theyre doing for at least this Novembers election, Shinkle said. Wayne County Board of Canvassers member Jonathan Kinlock agrees with Shinkle and said a lot needs to change with the citys election department.
Worried about whether your vote will count? Here’s how to submit a ballot without using the mail
Restrictions and types of early voting vary by state, but 40 states and the District of Columbia do offer some form of early voting. Turning in ballots at a local election office or polling locationJust about every state allows voters to bring ballots in person to turn them in at local election offices. If you’re not close to a local election office to turn in a ballot, some states allow ballots to be turned in to alternate locations or the polling locations. New Hampshire and Vermont allow voters to return ballots to a polling place. Drop boxesThese are special containers that allow voters to drop off absentee or mail-in ballots in sealed envelopes.
SOS urges Michigan lawmakers to allow absentee ballot counting before election day
LANSING, Mich. Michigans Secretary of State is urging lawmakers to allow absentee ballots to be counted before election day. With 2.5 million people voting absentee or in person Tuesday, the previous record of 2.2 million in 2018 was shattered. She said as it stands right now, clerks cant open and begin to count absentee ballots until election day. Almost 20 other states allow clerks to count absentee ballots as they roll in, but Michigan isnt one of them. More than 10,000 absentee ballots had to be rejected during Tuesdays primary because of postmarking errors.
Michigan Secretary of State addresses concerns ahead of primary election
DETROIT Michigans Secretary of State said her team is ready for Tuesdays primary election, but she admitted there will be some challenges. The Michigan Primary Election is a major test as residents look forward to the general election in November. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said her team is prepared for the challenges ahead. Benson is hopeful Tuesdays primary will go according to plan. The numbers are huge and the work ahead for clerks and staff members will be difficult as counting gets underway.
COVID-19 creates spike in absentee ballot requests ahead of Michigan Primary Election
DETROIT Tuesday is Michigan Primary Day, and more than 1 million people have already handed in their ballots. One reason is the sheer number of absentee voters. Mark Center was one of the many people handing in his absentee ballot in Downtown Royal Oak. While absentee ballots have been an option for years, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has created the spike in requests. There were more than 2 million requests for absentee ballots for this primary, and 1.2 million have been returned so far.
Are face masks required to vote in Michigan?
Gretchen Whitmer clarified on Friday the states new face mask requirements amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, naming five situations in which face masks are not required to be worn -- including at polling places. The new order also requires businesses to deny entry or service to individuals who dont comply with face mask requirements. The state of Michigan mailed absentee voting applications to all registered Michigan voters in May. To determine if your local clerk has a drop box available to receive absentee ballots, contact their office directly. Related: Court: Michigan absentee ballots that come after election wont count
Heres what your ballot will look like for the 2020 Michigan Primary Election on Aug. 4
The 2020 Michigan Primary Election is coming up on August 4 -- and if you plan to vote in person, it may be helpful to know what your ballot will look like ahead of time. Because the upcoming Michigan Primary Election focuses on supporting local representatives, ballots will significantly vary from district to district and county to county. Every Michigan ballot will, however, share the first line of candidates running for seats in the U.S. Congress (pictured below). A sample ballot for the Michigan primary election on August 4, 2020. Those who applied to receive an absentee ballot for the Michigan primary should have already received it in the mail.
Can you vote in person for the 2020 Michigan Primary Election amid the coronavirus pandemic?
The 2020 Michigan Primary Election is coming up on August 4 amid rising coronavirus (COVID-19) cases across the state. Face masks are not required to be worn when voting in person in Michigan, according to Gov. Michigan voters who feel uncomfortable voting in person amid the pandemic now have the option to vote by mail with an absentee ballot. The state of Michigan mailed absentee voting applications to all registered Michigan voters in May. Those who applied to receive an absentee ballot for the Michigan primary should have already received it in the mail.
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson touts high voter turnout
DETROIT – Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said she sees nothing wrong with paper ballots and for multiple reasons that she touched on when she sat down with Local 4′s Hank Winchester. Benson said the amount of absentee ballots is way up this year. In Michigan, all eligible and registered voters can fill out an absentee ballot without having to provide a reason why. This higher than usual number of absentee ballots could mean election results will be delayed. Benson said that Michigan will not have the same problem as Iowa.