LANSING, Mich. (WLNS/WOOD) — A group pushing for early in-person voting in Michigan and for the state to pay for mailing absentee ballots says it has submitted enough petition signatures to put its proposals before voters in November.
Promote the Vote 2022 says it delivered 669,972 signatures to the Michigan Secretary of State’s Office Monday.
The group says its ballot proposal would do the following:
- Allow Michigan voters serving in the military to have their ballot counted if postmarked by Election Day;
- Give voters nine days of early in-person voting;
- Require the state to pay for postage for absentee applications and absentee ballots; provide secure ballot drop boxes and a statewide tracking system for absentee ballots.
“The common-sense solutions in the Promote the Vote 2022 ballot initiative will make voting more convenient and secure especially for working parents, military families who move frequently or get deployed overseas, elderly voters, voters with disabilities, and rural voters who live or work far from their polling location,” Promote the Vote 2022’s website says.
The initiative has the support of Voters Not Politicians, which was behind the 2018 independent redistricting ballot proposal; the NAACP; the League of Women Voters and APIA Vote Michigan. Supporters say it would empower marginalized communities and limit voter intimidation.
“Today, Promote the Vote 2022 delivered 669,972 petition signatures from Michigan voters who want to make sure their voices are heard and their votes counted in every election,” Micheal Davis, executive director of Promote the Vote, said in a Monday statement. “The Promote the Vote 2022 campaign is extremely grateful to our team of partner organizations who worked tirelessly to gather signatures from every corner of our state. Michiganders demand and deserve to know they can vote safely, securely and conveniently, and we are already building momentum for the months leading up to the November General Election.”
Monday was the deadline for signatures to be submitted for petitions to qualify for the November ballot. In addition to Promote the Vote, Reproductive Freedom for All, which would put the issue of abortion on the ballot, delivered its 753,759 signatures. A little over 425,000 valid signatures are needed to qualify. The signatures must be verified by the state Bureau of Elections and certified by the Board of State Canvassers.