Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Michigan: State Supreme Court rules in favor of petition language in State Rep. Inman recall; Missing word not a valid reason to toss out petitions

Big unanimous decision by the Michigan Supreme Court allowing a more lenient standard on recall petition language. The decision overturned lower court rulings, including by the Michigan Court of Appeals, which tossed out the 13,991 signatures looking for the recall of Michigan State Representative Larry C. Inman (R). The petition language was originally approved, but the petitions that were printed out left out the word "right" in the sentence: attempted extortion under color of official right."

Among the key findings of the court:
“The recall petition is proper because the reasons give for recall in the circulated petitions were not different that the reasons that were approved by the Board of Canvassers.”
Petitioners needed 12201 valids to get on the ballot, though an initial review claimed that over 1800 signatures were invalid.

Inman, who is term-limited, was also recently found not guilty by a federal jury found of lying to federal authorities, but were hung on charges of attempted extortion and soliciting a bribe.

Inman was indicted by a federal grand jury over attempted extortion, bribery and lying to the FBI continues, with the House voting 98-8 to call for his resignation. Inman is accused of trying to get a bribe from a union group for a vote to repeal the state's prevailing wage law. He has been prevented from going to his old office, though he is able to go onto the House floor. Inman blamed an opiod addiction.

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