McCall Hamilton Advocacy and Public Affairs

Updates About Elections

Albert Resigns as Appropriations Chair, Elections Deal Struck

Update: Sep 19-30, 2022

On September 28, one of the final session days ahead of the November 8 election, the Michigan State Legislature finalized a $1 billion supplemental appropriation bill, most of which would additional funding to the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve (SOAR) Fund for various economic development projects.

In light of the negotiations, Representative Thomas Albert (R-Lowell) announced during the House Appropriations committee meeting that he would be resigning as chair due to his concerns with approving additional spending. Albert, who again addressed the chamber during his no-vote explanation, said he could not support the spending during a “period of economic uncertainty”. Representative Mary Whiteford (R-Casco Township) will serve as the Appropriations Chair for the remainder of the 2021-22 legislative session.

Following an agreement struck between the Whitmer administration, local clerks and lawmakers, the Michigan State Legislature also took up a package of bills related to election security and preprocessing of absentee ballots. All bills in the package passed out of both chambers and now head to the desk of Governor Gretchen Whitmer. House Bill 4491 would allow county clerks to remove deceased individuals from the qualified voter file as well as allow absentee ballot preprocessing up to two days before the election. Currently, Michigan only allows preprocessing 24 hours prior to an election and only in municipalities of at least 1,500 voters. House Bill 6071 would increase access to polling locations. Senate Bill 8 defines “verified electronic signature” for military personnel, while SB 311 allows the electronic return of ballots for military voters.

The legislation is expected to be signed into law and be in effect for the upcoming November general election.

Muskegon Prosecutor to Lead Election Fraud Investigation

Update: Sep 5-16, 2022

As previously reported in Updates from the Capitol, Attorney General Dana Nessel filed a petition for a special prosecutor with the Prosecuting Attorneys Coordinating Council (PACC) to investigate alleged statewide election fraud. On September 8, Muskegon County Prosecutor D.J. Hilson was assigned to review the investigation.

Nessel submitted the petition to the PACC asking for a special prosecutor to investigate fraudulent activity surrounding unauthorized access to voting machines following the 2020 general election. Notable targets of the investigation include state Representative Daire Rendon (R-Lake City), Attorney General candidate Matthew DePerno, and Barry County Sheriff Dar Leaf.

Under current law, if conflict exists within the Office of the Attorney General, a petition must be filed with the PACC to appoint a special prosecutor to take over the case. The PACC will review the materials and identify proper placement of the investigation.

Dixon Chooses Hernandez as Lt. Governor, MI GOP Supports

Update: Aug 22-Sep 2, 2022

On Friday, August 19, Republican gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon announced her choice of former state representative Shane Hernandez as her running mate. The announcement was made ahead of the August 27th Michigan Republican Party Convention, which was held to nominate statewide candidates for the November election.

Hernandez, who was nominated by attorney general candidate, Matt DePerno, at the convention, overwhelmingly won the nomination as Dixon’s running mate via a secret, paper ballot. Hernandez amassed approximately 80 percent of the vote, despite concerns that the Macomb County delegation and allies might attempt to thwart the nomination.

In related news, Dixon and Governor Gretchen Whitmer will have two televised debates prior to the November 8 election. The first will be hosted in Grand Rapids on October 13, while the second will be hosted in Detroit on October 25.