This week, Governor Rick Snyder signed a piece of legislation eliminating straight ticket voting in Michigan. Under the newly enacted law, a vote must be cast for each partisan race on a ballot, instead of casting one vote by party for all partisan races on the ballot. It also includes a $5 million appropriation for the purchase of new voting equipment, making the law referendum proof. Upon signing the bill, the Governor called on the legislature to pass a House bill allowing for no-reason absentee voting. Later that day, Secretary of State Ruth Johnson issued a statement also encouraging the legislature to enact no-reason absentee voting to help alleviate local clerk’s concerns of longer lines at the polls due to the new law. When the House passed the bill eliminating straight ticket voting they tie-barred it to legislation allowing for no-reason absentee voting. However, prior to passage in the Senate, the tie-bar was removed.
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