Secretary of State
MAY 19, 2021
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson submitted testimony to the state Senate Elections Committee today, denouncing legislation based on the Big Lie that would stop ballot tabulation before all votes have been counted.
"It is appalling that any elected official in this state would seriously consider changing the law to cease the counting of legally cast ballots in an election before a full count of every valid vote is completed," said Benson. "And it's another example of politicians choosing to codify the 'Big Lie' rather than tell their constituents the truth."
Benson noted that Senate Bill 299 would mandate that officials stop the tabulation of ballots at noon the day after the polls close, regardless of whether every valid vote was counted, thereby robbing countless citizens of their constitutional right to have their vote counted.
The bill is part of a 39-bill voter suppression package based on misinformation about the 2020 election, which was in fact the most secure, fair and accessible election in Michigan history. The integrity and accuracy of the election has been affirmed by more than 250 audits conducted by bipartisan election officials across the state.
"The legislation you continue to advance is not - as bill sponsors have claimed - the result of a deliberative, collaborative process that responds to the needs of our election administrators and the will of Michigan voters," said Benson. "Rather, it's part of a national, coordinated and partisan strategy to keep the 'Big Lie' alive and in the national consciousness through legislation that would undo the very policies that ensured the 2020 election results were accurate and the process secure."
Additionally, Benson noted that Senate Bill 297 would enable partisan appointees serving as county canvassers to block the certification of their local election results, thereby disenfranchising every voter in their county.
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