Judge tosses GOP challenge to exception for recall donations


Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs legislation to allocate $1.5 billion in economic development spending for businesses during a ceremony, Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in Detroit. The legislation creates the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund, which will be funded from state revenue with $1 billion to be used for assistance to companies. The legislation, which includes four bills, passed the GOP-led Legislature with bipartisan support. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed Republicans’ lawsuit challenging the ability of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s reelection campaign to collect excess donations under an exception for recall attempts, saying they lack standing to sue.

District Judge Janet Neff in Grand Rapids ruled this week that state GOP chairman Ron Weiser and the party failed to show they had suffered a “concrete and particularized injury.”

Republicans will appeal.

At issue is roughly $4 million in contributions to Whitmer that exceeded the $7,150 per-person limit.

The funds not spent on litigation or other recall-defense activities can be given to political parties or charities.

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