Michigan GOP Leaders Tell Election Board to Break the Law

Mish

Laura Cox and Ronn McDaniel tell the Michigan election certification board to break the law.

Illegal Maneuver

As noted in Trump's Maneuver to Intimidate Michigan Lawmakers Fails, the request by Cox and McDaniel is against the law.

Michigan Certification Monday

The Michigan State Board Meets Monday to Certify Election Results.

The role of the board is very narrow and limited. It is to canvass and certify election results. Michigan election law experts told reporters on a press call Friday that the language of the law, which states that the board "shall canvass the returns," is key to understanding the requirements of the board.

"The Michigan Supreme Court has been very clear that 'shall' means 'shall.' It's mandatory. It's ministerial. They have no choice," said Mark Brewer, the longest serving chair of the Michigan Democratic Party and an attorney at the lawfirm Goodman Acker.

The board cannot ask for an audit prior to certification, according to Michigan law.

If the board becomes locked in a 2-2 partisan deadlock, like what initially happened with the Wayne County Board of Canvassers on Tuesday, two parallel processes can occur.

Liedel said the court has proceeded with contempt proceedings in the past for members of the board failing to certify and that board members refusing to certify could be charged with a misdemeanor or willful neglect of duty. If the issue is not resolved by the Court of Appeals it would go to the Michigan Supreme Court, but Michigan election lawyers agreed Friday that it going to that level is unlikely.

At the same time, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, has the power to remove and replace any board member, according to Michigan law, and can act without waiting for a court or anyone else.

Can the legislature get involved and appoint their own electors?

The short answer, according to Michigan election experts, is no.

Even if the State Board of Canvassers refuses to certify results and the issue goes to the courts and Whitmer potentially steps in, Michigan election lawyers explained that the legislature cannot try to appoint their own electors.

"You can look through the entire Michigan election code that was written by the legislature and signed by governors of both parties. There is no role for the legislature in this process," Brewer said.

MICHIGAN ELECTION LAW Act 116 of 1954 

  1. The board of state canvassers shall canvass the returns and determine the result of all elections for electors of president and vice president of the United States, state officers, United States senators, representatives in congress, circuit judges, state senators and representatives elected by a district that is located in more than 1 county, and other officers as required by law. The board of state canvassers shall also determine the result of an election on a proposed amendment to the constitution or on any other ballot question that has been submitted, pursuant to law, to the qualified and registered electors of this state at large for ratification or rejection. The board of state canvassers shall canvass the returns and determine the result of an election on a ballot question submitted to the qualified and registered electors of more than 1 county under the regional transit authority act, 2012 PA 387, MCL 124.541 to 124.558. Upon making the determination, the board of state canvassers shall immediately prepare a certificate of determination and deliver the properly certified certificate of determination to the secretary of state.
  2. Upon receipt of a properly certified certificate of determination from a board of county canvassers pursuant to section 826, the board of state canvassers, at its next meeting, shall record the results of the county canvass contained in the certificate.

The above from MICHIGAN ELECTION LAW (EXCERPT)  Act 116 of 1954 

MICHIGAN ELECTION LAW Act 116 of 1954

  1. In order to ensure compliance with the provisions of this act, after each election the secretary of state may audit election precincts.
  2. The secretary of state shall prescribe the procedures for election audits that include reviewing the documents, ballots, and procedures used during an election as required in section 4 of article II of the state constitution of 1963. The secretary of state and county clerks shall conduct election audits, including statewide election audits, as set forth in the prescribed procedures. The secretary of state shall train and certify county clerks and their staffs for the purpose of conducting election audits of precincts randomly selected by the secretary of state in their counties. An election audit must include an audit of the results of at least 1 race in each precinct selected for an audit. A statewide election audit must include an audit of the results of at least 1 statewide race or statewide ballot question in a precinct selected for an audit. An audit conducted under this section is not a recount and does not change any certified election results. The secretary of state shall supervise each county clerk in the performance of election audits conducted under this section. 
  3. Each county clerk who conducts an election audit under this section shall provide the results of the election audit to the secretary of state within 20 days after the election audit.

The above from MICHIGAN ELECTION LAW (EXCERPT)  Act 116 of 1954

‘No Legal or Factual Basis’ to Question Election Results

What does the secretary of state say? 

The Michigan secretary of state says ‘No Legal or Factual Basis’ to Question Election Results.

Blatantly Illegal Plea

Cox and McDaniel "encourage the board to adjourn for 14 days to allow for a full, transparent audit of Wayne County's 2020 General Election results."

That is a request for the certification board to do something that is blatantly illegal.

The bizarre and illegal plea by Cox and McDaniel also refers to events in Georgia which have no bearing in Michigan. 

Incitement

Cox and McDaniel "encourage the board to adjourn for 14 days"

That is encouraging the board to do something illegal. 

At best, it is incitement. 

In criminal law, incitement is the encouragement of another person to commit a crime.

Appalling and Disgusting 

Trump and his minions will do anything, even encourage clearly illegal acts, to steal the election.

Money vs Principles

Mish

Comments (52)
No. 1-16
PecuniaNonOlet
PecuniaNonOlet

No surprise, republicans have always been scumbags, people wont tolerate their bs anymore though, that is the real change.

Louis Winthorpe III
Louis Winthorpe III

Trump and his enablers are enemies of American Democracy. We're way past the point of recounts and legal gotchas. This is moving into sedition.

Anyone that calls themselves an American should be condemning this behavior.

Woodturner
Woodturner

I say impeach Trump for treason.

Eddie_T
Eddie_T

These highly partisan Republican political operatives in Michigan have no respect for our laws or our traditions.....they are without a moral compass and lacking basic ethics and moral courage.

The beauty of our system, so carefully constructed and preserved for two centuries, is going to hell because we have way too many people in politics just like them....these people are greedy, ignorant, dumb, and completely corrupt.

huck
huck

There is too much fake news out there. No one can believe left nor right any longer. The media is totally fake . Google is fake. There is nothing left except the history books of past years and even then can you trust those?

Mr. Purple
Mr. Purple

Is this the sort of behavior we can expect in every future election? Is that what they're saying?

GawdHelpUs
GawdHelpUs

Well... it’s clear illiteracy, like COVID-19, continues to spread among the GOP. This situation is a serious indictment of the U.S. education system.

kurtellis
kurtellis

mish you are a very strange man. as an internet person are you not aware that every time you criticize republicans you just keep losing followers? Disgruntled libertarians don't want to hear about how you think democrats won. don't you care about social media? if you were smart you'd parrot trump and then monetize big bucks

GawdHelpUs
GawdHelpUs

Well...hmm. Further evidence that illiteracy and ignorance, like COVID-19, continue to spread among members of the GOP.

Mish
Mish

Editor

Money vs Principles

shamrock
shamrock

This is more than illegal, it's sedition and treason. Lock them up.

EGW
EGW

I don't see how writing a letter is illegal or "treason" as some say in the comments. They can't compel the board to not certify the election results, they are simply asking. If the law requires the board to certify the results then the board will probably do it.

Sechel
Sechel

Its illegal, it will fail but we will have drama. Hate to say I told you so, but this is exactly why people were wrong to vote Trump in 2016. You don't elect despots and hope they follow Democratic principles.

Jojo
Jojo

The obvious solution to all of this is a return to the old ways where the victor slays or enslaves the losers on the other side. This brings agreement and purity of thought.

humna909
humna909

There have been two US economic blogs (with a bit of politics) that I've been following for more than a decade. This is one of them.

What is start about the commentary and earns my respect is that both blogs have been quite forthright in condemning their "own team".

The other blog is liberal/democrat leaning blog has been very condemning of the democrats. This blog has been not held back in condemnation of the republicans.

Respect to you Mish. I'm definitely more on the liberal/democrate side of the fence. But I don't agree with everything you write. However that is the point.

If you only choose to read commentary that is wholly aligned with your world view then you condemn yourself to ignorance and even worse condemn society to polarization in politics.


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