Benson declines invite to testify in front of Oversight Committee

Elections

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has declined an invitation to testify at a state Oversight Committee hearing regarding the 2020 elections.

Benson said she’s concerned the April 20 hearing could serve as a platform for misinformation on the election.

The invitation to testify comes as Senate Republicans are trying to pass a bill they say will improve election security. The bill includes stricter ID requirements and a shortened deadline for returning absentee ballots in drop boxes.

Chair of the Oversight Committee Republican Sen. Ed McBroom pushed back on Benson’s refusal to testify, sending a letter to her office Monday.

“Your decision to refuse our invitation, while recently testifying in front of the United States Congress on election procedures and policies … is disappointing and perplexing,” McBroom stated in the letter.

Benson’s office released a statement Monday backing her decision to obtain from testifying.

“The Oversight Committee and its members have on several occasions taken action and made statements to undermine public faith in our democracy by spreading misinformation about the 2020 elections,” Jake Rollow, a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of State, said. “Secretary Benson has repeatedly affirmed that she cannot in good conscience participate in such a charade …”

While Benson has declined to participate in the hearing, she said the director of elections, Jonathan Brater, would be available to testify.

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