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Wayne Co. judge to decide secretary of state candidate's challenge to Detroit absentee ballots

person dropping absentee ballot into ballot box
Jodi Westrick
Michigan Radio

A Wayne County judge is expected to rule Monday in a court case challenging thousands of absentee ballots already dropped off in Detroit. The challenge was filed by the Republican candidate for Michigan Secretary of State, Kristina Karamo.

The lawsuit targets absentee ballots turned in by Detroit voters. Karamo says those ballots should be declared invalid if voters didn’t show an ID or if the ballots were deposited in unmonitored drop boxes.

Detroit’s attorneys call the lawsuit “frivolous,” and want the judge to reject the request and to order Karamo to pay the city’s legal costs.
The city’s final response in the case says the Karamo legal team offered no evidence that any laws were broken or that any impropriety occurred.

"Instead, Plaintiffs have offered preposterous conspiracy theories. They have misrepresented evidence to this Court. To say their case is based on speculation and innuendo gives speculation and innuendo a bad name," city attorneys wrote in a brief.

Karamo is an election denier who supports the "big lie” that former President Donald Trump won the 2020 election. Her campaign missed the deadline to file a final response brief.

Karamo faces incumbent Democratic Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson on the ballot. Benson is not a direct party in the case.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.