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Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs controversial election recount, fraud bills into law

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Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs controversial election recount, fraud bills into law


(The Center Square) – Michigan’s process of handling election recounts and fraud allegations has changed, with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signing two controversial bills into law Monday.

Senate bills 603 and 604 modify the requirements for conducting ballot recounts and prosecuting election-related crimes.

“Today, with the signing of our common-sense recount law reforms, we are strengthening our democracy and ensuring that we reach the most accurate count of the ballots possible during a recount process,” said sponsor state Sen. Stephanie Chang, D-Detroit.

“These laws achieve critical goals of protecting the security of every vote, modernizing our recount process, and uplifting the voices of Michigan voters.”

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Senate bills 603 and 604 modify the requirements for conducting ballot recounts and prosecuting election-related crimes. AFP via Getty Images

Among other changes, the law will eliminate the board of canvasser’s investigative powers, instead requiring the board to refer any allegations of fraud to the relevant county prosecutor, rather than conducting a recount.

Only alleged errors could merit a recount, and only when the alleged errors could potentially change election results.

It will also increase the deposit for filing a recount petition, modify various guidelines for clerks, and change sentencing guidelines for election law violations.

“For years, clerks and candidates have demanded reforms and updates to Michigan’s 70-year-old recount law so every valid ballot can be subject to a recount in close races,” said state Senator Jeremy Moss, D-Southfield, who co-sponsored the bill with Chang.


Volunteers and city officials recount presidential ballots at the Oakland Schools Conference Center on December 5, 2016 in Waterford Township, Michigan
Among other changes, the law will eliminate the board of canvasser’s investigative powers, instead requiring the board to refer any allegations of fraud to the relevant county prosecutor, rather than conducting a recount. Getty Images

“This legislation will strengthen the integrity of our voting systems and ensure the accuracy of election results.”

Opponents say eliminating the canvassers’ investigatory powers and scrapping protections against election worker interference will make fraud more difficult to address and compromise election security.

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“Watering down protections is counterproductive when several red flags have arisen within the state’s elections process,” said Rep. Jaime Greene, R-Richmond.

“For example, there being no system to tell if someone votes in multiple states, a real issue facing the state of Michigan as evidenced by the secretary of state removing some 170,000 people no longer living here from our voter rolls only after she was sued.”

The new laws are effective immediately and will apply to the August primary races.



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Michigan

Trump’s chances of beating Biden in Michigan, according to recent polls

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Trump’s chances of beating Biden in Michigan, according to recent polls


Donald Trump is leading President Joe Biden in the crucial battleground state of Michigan, according to recent polling.

Trump was riding high as he arrived in Grand Rapids on Saturday for his first campaign rally since narrowly surviving an assassination attempt the week before. A gunman opened fire on the July 13 rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, leaving Trump with a bloodied ear, killing one of Trump’s supporters and injuring two others before he was shot dead by Secret Service agents.

In the days since, Trump formally accepted the GOP nomination, celebrated a legal victory and saw a boost in some national and swing state polls. It comes as Biden is continuing to face pressure to drop out of the presidential race after a disastrous debate performance in late June raised fresh concerns about the 81-year-old’s age and ability to beat the Republican in November.

Biden, who is isolating as he battles a COVID-19 infection, has repeatedly insisted he will remain in the race.

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Donald Trump holds his first public campaign rally since surviving an assassination attempt on July 20, 2024, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Polls showing he is leading President Joe Biden in the crucial battleground state.

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Trump addressed those calls during Saturday’s rally, polling the crowd on whether they would prefer his opponent in November to be Biden or his heir apparent, Vice President Kamala Harris.

Trump first mentioned Harris, mispronouncing her name, which elicited boos from the crowd.

When he named “crooked Joe Biden,” the crowd’s booing intensified significantly. Trump also mentioned Gretchen Whitmer, the Democratic governor of Michigan, who also received boos, but not as loudly as those for Biden.

Michigan is one of several swing states that could determine the outcome of November’s election. Trump narrowly won the state in 2016, but Biden won in 2020 by just 154,000 votes. There have been concerns about his ability to win Michigan—which has the largest concentration of Arab Americans in the nation—in November after more than 100,000 Michigan voters cast ballots for “uncommitted” in the state’s Democratic primary in February as a protest against Biden’s support for Israel’s war in Gaza.

FiveThirtyEight’s average of polls shows that Trump is leading Biden by 2.2 percentage points (43.6 percent to 41.4 percent) in Michigan as of Sunday.

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Polls conducted since the assassination attempt have all had Trump leading.

A Civiqs survey of 532 registered Michigan voters conducted between July 13 and 16 had Biden trailing Trump by 3 percentage points, 46 percent to 43 percent. The same survey found that Trump and Harris were tied, with 46 percent support each. The survey has a margin of error of 5.3 percent.

An Emerson College poll, which surveyed 1,000 registered voters between July 15 and 16, also found Trump leading by 3 percentage points in a two-way matchup, with 46 percent supporting Trump, and 42 percent backing Biden. Trump maintained the same lead when third-party candidates were added. The poll has a margin of error of 2.1 percent.

Biden visited Michigan last week, where he touted his administration’s achievements and sought to hammer home the high stakes of November’s election.

“Another four years of Donald Trump is deadly serious,” he said during a rally in Detroit on July 12. “America needs to wake up and realize that Trump and his MAGA Republicans—what they’re trying to do. We’re going to join them, we’re going to engage them and we’re going to stop them.”

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Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.



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Donald Trump attacks Joe Biden, Kamala Harris at Michigan rally: ‘Stupid, stupid person’

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Donald Trump attacks Joe Biden, Kamala Harris at Michigan rally: ‘Stupid, stupid person’


Donald Trump blasted Joe Biden and Kamala Harris during a rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This rally was the former president’s first rally after he survived an assassination attempt in Pennsylvania last week.

Donald Trump attacks Joe Biden, Kamala Harris at Michigan rally (Photo by BILL PUGLIANO / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP, Photographer: Bonnie Cash/UPI/Bloomberg)

Attacking his rivals Biden and Harris, Trump said, according to The Mirror, “If you vote for Biden, you are voting for Harris as well.”

‘They’re not after you but I’ll always stand in the way’

“They’re after me, they’re not after you but I’ll always stand in the way,” Trump said while casting the indictments against him as a witch hunt. Speaking about Biden, Trump said “he’s a stupid, stupid person” who claims “weaponized justice against me.”

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Trump described how well he gets along with Chinese president Xi Jinping, a “brilliant” man who “controls 1.4 billion people with an iron fist.” Trump said Jinping “makes guys like Biden look like babies.”

At the same rally, Trump said he took a bullet for “democracy” and vowed to “fight, fight fight” after the Pennsylvania rally shooting. “I’m saying, ‘What the hell did I do for democracy? Last week, I took a bullet for democracy,” he said.

Trump was accompanied by his running mate JD Vance, who hailed the former president at the rally. “I find it hard to believe that a week ago, an assassin tried to take Donald Trump’s life, and now we have got a hell of a crowd in Michigan to welcome him back on the campaign trail,” Vance said before Trump arrived.

After being introduced, Trump said he was “thrilled to be back in the great state of Michigan.” “I stand before you only by the grace of almighty God. I shouldn’t be here. Maybe JD or someone else should be here. Something very special happened. Something happened,” he said.

Trump was wounded in the assassination attempt, as were two other people. One person died in the shooting, and the suspect, Thomas Matthew Crooks, was killed by Secret Service snipers.

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Donald Trump, JD Vance make first campaign stop in Michigan

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Donald Trump, JD Vance make first campaign stop in Michigan


Donald Trump, JD Vance make first campaign stop in Michigan – CBS Detroit

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Former President Donald Trump held his first campaign rally since he survived an attempted assassination, returning to the battleground state of Michigan alongside his new running mate.

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