Sixteen months after the COVID-19 pandemic began in Michigan, the GOP-led Legislature has revoked Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s pandemic powers.
The House of Representatives sealed the end of her powers Wednesday with a vote of 60-48. The Senate approved the petition on July 15 on a 20-15 vote.
Democratic Rep. Sam Steckloff said petitions are meant to go on the ballot to voters instead of enacted through the Legislature and contended petition gatherers “lied” to those who signed the petition.
After two orders from the Michigan Supreme Court, the State Board of Canvassers unanimously certified the Unlock Michigan petition aiming to revoke Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers.
The petition heads to the GOP-led Legislature where its expected to be quickly approved, spokeswoman of Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey of Clarklake, Abby Walls, said.
“Seeing as opponents have finally run out of absurd challenges, we will take it up as soon as Secretary [Jocelyn] Benson sends.”
For the second time, the Michigan Supreme Court has ordered the State Board of Canvassers certify the Unlock Michigan petition that will likely revoke Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 1945 emergency powers.
On June 11, the top court ordered the State Board of Canvassers to certify the petition after the board deadlocked 2-2 on multiple motions. But Keep Michigan Safe (KMS) lawyer Mark Brewer filed a motion asking the top court to reconsider the order.
The top court answered, again ordering the petition to be certified.
The Michigan Supreme Court ruled Friday the Board of State Canvassers must certify the Unlock Michigan petition to remove Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 1945 emergency powers.
In April, the Board of State Canvassers deadlocked 2-2 three times on votes whether to certify or investigate further Unlock Michigan.
“In the present case, the Board approved the form and content of the petition in July 2020,” the state’s top court wrote. “The Bureau of Elections analyzed the signatures using a random sampling method and estimated that Unlock Michigan submitted at least 460,000 valid signatures when they only needed about 340,000. The Board rejected, by deadlocked vote, a motion to investigate the collection of signatures. The Board thus has a clear legal duty to certify the petition.”
The Board of State Canvassers on Thursday deadlocked 2-2 three times on votes whether to certify or investigate further the conservative Unlock Michigan petition to remove Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 1945 emergency powers before adjourning.
On Oct 2, 2020, Unlock Michigan filed signatures with the Secretary of State’s office. The group gathered roughly 460,000 valid signatures, more than the 340,047 needed. Those petitions are normally handled within 60 days, but this time, 202 days after filing, two Democrat members are refusing to certify the petition.
Instead, Democrat Vice-Chair Julie Matuzak motioned to engage in the Administrative Procedure Act regarding promulgation of a new rulemaking process for petitions and to pause the petition. Matuzak said she didn’t know who would fund that investigation or how long it would take.