State Moves to Bar Top Republican Candidates From Ballot

State Moves to Bar Top Republican Candidates From Ballot

’s Bureau of Elections may have just handed incumbent Gov. a big win.

According to findings from the bureau, Whitmer might very well not have to face off against the most formidable Republican candidates running against her.

The two candidates best positioned to challenge Whitmer are former Detriot Police Chief , the most well-known GOP hopeful, and businessman , the wealthiest. However, the state bureau of elections has revealed neither man submitted enough valid signatures to get their name on the ballot.

And they’re not the only candidates who may be removed from the ballot.

As The Detriot News reports:

If the bureau’s reviews hold, five of the 10 candidates who submitted signatures to run for governor wouldn’t make the ballot. Three other GOP candidates for governor were also found to have insufficient signatures: financial adviser Michael Markey of Grand Haven, Michigan State Police Capt. Michael Brown of Stevensville and entrepreneur Donna Brandenburg of Byron Center.

In a staff report, the bureau said it had tracked 36 petition circulators “who submitted fraudulent petition sheets consisting entirely of invalid signatures.” The bureau said it was “unaware of another election cycle in which this many circulators submitted such a substantial volume of fraudulent petition sheets consisting of invalid signatures.”

“In total, the bureau estimates that these circulators submitted at least 68,000 invalid signatures submitted across 10 sets of nominating petitions,” the report said. “In several instances, the number of invalid signatures submitted by these circulators was the reason a candidate had an insufficient number of valid signatures.”

The bureau found that Craig’s campaign had turned in 11,113 invalid signatures, including 9,879 signatures from “fraudulent petition circulators.” Only 10,192 of the 21,305 signatures Craig submitted were “facially valid,” leaving him short of the 15,000 signature threshold, according to the bureau.

John Yob, an advisor for Johnson, told The Detroit News that the bureau didn’t have the right to unilaterally dismiss all of the signatures collected by the alleged forgers.

Yob added that the Johnson campaign looked forward “to winning this fight before [the Michigan Board of State Canvassers], and if necessary, in the courts.”

The Board of State Canvassers will meet to review the Bureau of Elections’ findings on Thursday. The board is made up of two Democrats and two Republicans.

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