SOS Benson, State Republicans clash over GOP Election Reform Bills

A voter walks with her ballot to vote in the November Election
A voter walks with her ballot to vote in the November Election(Eric Fletcher/ WJRT)
Published: Apr. 21, 2021 at 5:30 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) -”Election Administration is not a partisan issue. And access to the ballot box should not be either,” said Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum.

Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum-- speaking out ahead of a committee meeting with State Republicans on Election Reform Bills introduced as a response to the results of the 2020 November Election. Byrum joined Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson for a press conference today--to voice opposition to the bills.

“We’ve seen nearly identical legislation also introduced in Florida, Arizona, Iowa, Texas, Montana, and Arkansas. They include legislation to limit drop boxes restrict the right to vote by mail, and ban proactive distribution of absentee ballot applications and other educational information to embark on this endeavor is not just un-American and anti democratic,” said Secretary of State, Jocelyn Benson.

State Senator Ruth Johnson - a co-sponsor of the package of 39 bills says the effort to reform how Michiganders cast their ballots-- is about protecting the integrity of future elections for all legitimate voters in the state.

“It’s to make it usable harder to cheat we know after Proposition three went through in 2018 November, that there’s some holes in the system, we know that protocol wasn’t followed, we have an auditor general’s report that says that there were problems, and you must keep up and continually make sure you have a good system, one that’s fair, one that’s easy to use, but you can’t cheat, and when you can’t game the system on, said State Senator Ruth Johnson. (R)

Johnson says there were issues with the 2020 election and in prior elections-- to warrant a closer look at how people vote to make it’s fair for all.

“And we did see more than I’ve ever seen in 32 years, again, not enough to change any outcomes, but those are red flags that you make sure you take care of so that everyone’s voice will be heard,” Johnson said.

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