Activists submit signatures to put voting rights on Michigan ballot | Politics & Elections | Detroit

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Steve Nevling

Polling station in Detroit.

Voting rights activists submitted nearly 670,000 signatures on Monday to trigger a November ballot initiative that would create a constitutional amendment to protect and expand access to the ballot box.

Promoting the vote calls for nine days of early voting, secure ballot boxes, ballot tracking, public funding for mail-in ballot postage, and additional time for military and foreign voters to return their ballots by mail. The initiative would also allow voters to request an absentee ballot for all future elections.

To appear on the ballot, the initiative must obtain more than 425,000 valid signatures from registered voters.

“The Promote the Vote 2022 campaign is extremely grateful to our team of partner organizations who have worked tirelessly to collect signatures from all corners of our state,” said Michael Davis, Executive Director of Promote the Vote. “Michiganians demand and deserve to know they can vote safely, securely and conveniently, and we are already building momentum for the months leading up to the November general election. »

A Republican initiative, Secure MI Vote, would have made voting more difficult, but the group failed to collect enough signatures to put the initiative on the ballot.

Republicans have attempted to curb the franchise by falsely claiming there was widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed efforts by the GOP-led legislature to restrict voting access.

Monday was a victory for suffrage advocates.

“Promote the Vote 2022 provides nonpartisan solutions to ensure that every eligible voter has the opportunity to exercise their right to vote, and that’s why the League of Women Voters of Michigan and our volunteers have worked so diligently to collect signatures,” Christina Schlitt, co-chair of the Michigan League of Women Voters, said. “We are thrilled to deliver hundreds of thousands of signatures from Michigan voters who want to be sure their voices are heard, their votes are counted, and no one is left behind.”

Also on Monday, a coalition of abortion rights activists collected more than 753,000 signatures to force a vote that would change the state constitution to affirm abortion rights – the most signatures ever. ever collected for a ballot initiative in Michigan’s history.

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