Michigan Judge Rules State Secretary’s Ballot Signature-Matching Guidance Invalid | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: DENY X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

Michigan Judge Rules State Secretary’s Ballot Signature-Matching Guidance Invalid

A Michigan judge ruled last week that Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s last October guidance relating to ballot signature verification was not in compliance with the law and thus it’s invalid.

Michigan Republican Party and Allegan County clerk Robert Genetski filed the lawsuit on Nov. 2, 2020, against Benson and Jonathan Brater, director of the Michigan Bureau of Elections.

The plaintiffs claimed that the guidance Benson issued last October violated the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) and should be nullified. They also asked the court to declare that they have the right to request an audit of their choosing, saying the state-wide audit in November did not review whether signatures were properly evaluated.

On Oct. 6, 2020, Benson issued guidance titled “Absent Voter Ballot Processing: Signature Verification and Voter Notification Standards.”

The guidance stated that clerks “must perform their signature verification duties with the presumption that the voter’s application or envelope signature is his or her genuine signature.”

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