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Validity of Thanedar's nominating petitions upheld by state

Jun 1, 2018

The Michigan Board of State Canvassers has unanimously upheld Shri Thanedar's nominating petition signatures in his bid to be the Democratic nominee for governor, The Associated Press has reported.

The board on Friday rejected a challenge from a primary rival, Abdul El-Sayed. The grievance claims most of Thanedar's petitions contain offenses ranging from voter information clashing with the qualified voter file to potentially falsified signatures of petition circulators.

In a review of the nominating petition, the board said that El-Sayed filed nearly 40,000 challenges against Thanedar’s 30,554 filed signatures. The board processed 45 percent of those challenges, and found that even if the outstanding challenges were accepted, Thanedar still had nearly 1,300 more signatures than the 15,000 minimum required to qualify for the ballot.

The board backed the state Bureau of Elections' previous review of Thanedar's nominating petitions and deemed the candidate had more than enough legitimate signatures to qualify as a candidate.

The challenge was filed in early May, when Thanedar lobbed his own complaint about El-Sayed's eligibility.

Thanedar challenged El-Sayed’s candidacy on the grounds that El-Sayed was registered to vote in New York state from 2012 to 2015. Michigan’s Constitution requires candidates for governor to be registered in Michigan for at least four years prior to taking office.

The state Bureau of Elections said that El-Sayed has been continuously registered to vote in Michigan since 2003, and is eligible to run for governor.

Thanedar and El-Sayed will face former Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer in the Democratic primary this August. Polls in early May showed Thanedar and Whitmer deadlocked, with El-Sayed trailing in third.