Nonprofits ‘Voters Not Politicians’ and ‘Secure MI Vote’ split on Michigan Proposal 2

Proposal 2 aims to amend the state constitution to make big changes to its election law.
Published: Oct. 18, 2022 at 7:40 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - Election season is upon us, which means many may have already received or cast an absentee ballot.

There are three proposals you may have noticed on this year’s ballot.

One of them is Proposal 2, which if passed, would amend the state constitution’s language on voting policies. Proposal 2 lists nine different provisions, as follows:

  • Recognize the fundamental right to vote without harassing conduct;
  • Require military or overseas ballots to be counted if postmarked by election day;
  • Provide voter right to verify identity with photo ID or signed statement;
  • Provide voters the right to a single application to vote absentee in all elections;
  • Require state-funded absentee-ballot drop boxes and postage for absentee applications and ballots;
  • Provide that only election officials may conduct post-election audits;
  • Require nine days of early in-person voting;
  • Allow donations to fund elections, which must be disclosed;
  • Require canvass boards to certify election results based only on the official records of votes cast.

Nancy Wang, executive director of the nonprofit Voters Not Politicians, said many voters agree that Proposition 2 should be passed.

“These provisions, they are common sense and they are wildly popular,” Wang began.

She continued, “We want to provide access to the ballot to make sure people get their voices heard. That’s why this is so important to pass on Nov. 8.”

Some, however, do have questions about Proposal 2′s provisions. Jeff Litten, executive director of the nonprofit Secure MI Vote, believes Proposal 2′s election donation language could put a strain on clerks across the state.

“It’s going to make it so any private individual, billionaire, special interest group or corporation can donate as much money as they would like to local clerks with partisan elections on the line,” Litten claimed.

Litten went on, “This is just going to put extra burdens on our clerks that are unexpected and unnecessary for what we have right now in the State of Michigan.”

Litten added that he is also concerned about Proposal 2′s voting ID provision. Litten claimed that many Michigan residents are in support of the voter ID requirement.

“The biggest problem that Michiganders have with this proposal is that it is going to make it so that you never have to show an ID to vote,” Litten said.

Litten then noted, “This is despite 80% of Michigan residents supporting requiring an ID to vote with no exceptions.”

Wang countered Litten’s claim, noting that Proposal 2 merely looks to uphold what has already been a law in Michigan since 2007. That being, if a person doesn’t have a photo ID and refuses to sign an affidavit confirming their identity. They cannot vote and will be referred to the clerk.

“As most voters know, our elections in Michigan are some of the safest and most secure in the country and they would continue to be if this proposal passes,” Wang explained.

Another talking point regarding Proposal 2 is that if passed, it could loosen the integrity and security of Michigan elections.

Litten claimed that many voters have been concerned about the integrity of state and federal election results over the past three years.

“Both sides of the aisle have been questioning our results and questioning if we have had fair elections,” Litten said.

He continued, “It is both sides, not just one side, and Proposal 2 is just going to make it so that more questions are asked.”

Wang responded to such claims, noting that election results on the state level have been reviewed hundreds of times with no evidence of voter fraud or unfair election practices.

“In 2020, for example, local and state governments made, I think, over 250 election audits but they were all by election officials to make sure that the election had proceeded smoothly,” Wang said.

Wang even added that Proposal 2 could reduce the risk of unsecured election practices taking place in Michigan.

“With respect to election integrity Proposal 2 would actually put into our constitution at least two provisions that would increase election integrity,” Wang said.

She continued, “One is to ensure that only election officials can conduct audits of the election.”

Litten concluded that despite what supporters of Proposal 2 claim, he and many other Michigan residents are concerned it would make irreversible changes. Litten added that most of these provisions are not needed.

“I am just concerned that Proposal 2 allows more questions to be asked and puts things into our constitution that are unnecessary,” he explained.

Litten then claimed, “The group behind Proposal 2 is the same group behind Proposal 3 in 2018 and they are just continuing to change our constitution instead of letting the legislature do its job to change these laws.”

Absentee ballots have already gone out to many Michigan voters. You can also vote in person on Nov. 8 during Election Day.

For more details on your polling location, how to register to vote and more, visit Vote411 by clicking here.