Law
4:36 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Elections officials refuse to block ballot question

The state Court of Appeals could be the next stop for a business group that’s trying to keep a proposal to protect collective bargaining off the November ballot. That’s after state elections officials said they don’t have the legal authority to block the question.
    
The business-backed group Citizens Protecting Michigan’s Constitution asked the Secretary of State to rule a question not eligible to appear on the ballot – even though the union-backed petition drive collected 650,000 names. That’s double the number needed. But the business group says the question itself is broad and sweeping when it should be narrow in scope.

The ballot question would amend the state constitution to guarantee collective bargaining rights and preempt a right-to-work law in Michigan. It would also roll back Republican-sponsored efforts to limit union fundraising and organizing.

The state’s election director says in a letter that the law does not give the Secretary of State the authority to unilaterally declare a question invalid. Attorneys say they may seek a court order to keep the question off the ballot.